“Gluttony starts when no you are no longer hungry.” This is not from me but from Alphonse Daudet and I happen to agree with him!
Today, I am taking you to Congo for a peanut butter mousse. But before we embark on this trip to the Republic of Congo so I can tell you more about the dessert I chose, I have a question for you: when and how was “dessert” born as an after meal treat?
The art of pastries dates back to the time of the pharaohs. At the time, it was just small and simple candies made wild honey, citrus and nuts. The Romans and the Greeks followed suit.
The dessert as a gastronomic stage in any meal, although spread throughout the world today, is considered typically French. The term dessert is actually associated with a specific moment: it refers to the time of the meal where you eat dessert and not the dish that is served is. The action of “des-serving” the table occurs when the meal is finished.
Before the beginning of the seventeenth century, sweet and savory dishes were not separated in the order of the meal. Meat or fish could be sweet or savory, a sweet dish could appear between two meat dishes and dessert could be a savory dish. In short, it was anarchy!
The clear separation between savory and sweet dishes only started in France after the Renaissance. Since the seventeenth century, the term has applied to sweets that are brought to a table after the table is cleared (desserte of the table).
But back to the Republic of Congo!
In the Gulf of Guinea, straddling the equator, the Republic of Congo which extends over 1,000 miles is divided into 12 departments. This is one of eight states that make up Central Africa. It is also called Congo-Brazzaville to distinguish it from neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire), also known as Congo-Kinshasa.
Culinary specialties are as numerous and diverse as the number of ethnic groups. Some recipes that originated from certain ethnic groups are now considered national dishes. For example, chicken moamba , “the” national dish of the country, similar to chicken nyembwe from Gabon.
If savory Congolese cuisine is rich and varied, the country’s desserts are almost exclusively composed of fruits including the fruit of peanut, the main ingredient of my recipe today, more specifically peanut butter.
If peanut butter has sometimes been featured in some of our savory recipes including Indonesian tahu telor , Liberian palava , or chicken satay from Brunei , this is the first time we feature this ingredient in a sweet recipe.
Agar-agar gives the peanut butter mousse I prepared a rather light and airy texture. I am talking about the texture… calories are another story!
Note this dessert fits well with the country’s tastes in terms of feminine beauty. Congo, men like that women with a well filled belly! No, it is definitely not good to be thin for a woman!
Yes! In Brazzaville, buttocks are a major asset in the arsenal of seduction! A pill named the “C4 pill” that helps shape a nice rounded ass is all the rage right now in Congo and DRC.
And what better and more natural than peanut butter to seduce your man?
Suddenly gluttony is not a bad thing… and this peanut butter mousse is rather succulent!
Click here to read more about agar-agar.
- 5 oz. peanut butter
- ¾ cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons agar-agar (or 3 tablespoons gelatin)
- 6 egg whites
- 1 cup heavy cream
- Cocoa powder and/or chocolate chips for garnishing
- Beat the egg whites until stiff while gradually incorporating the sugar.
- Dissolve the agar-agar in a little water (hot or cold according to the instructions on the package).
Melt the peanut butter over low heat and stir in the agar-agar (or gelatin).
- Let cool for 10 minutes.
- Whip the heavy cream.
Stir the peanut butter and gelatin mixture into the whipped cream and beat for 2 minutes.
Gently fold the beaten egg whites into the whipped cream and peanut butter mixture.
- Refrigerate for at least 6 hours.
- Sprinkle with cocoa powder and/or chocolate chips before serving.