Make Ahead

Mocha Whiskey Mousse Tart with Pretzel Crust

January 19, 2016
Photo by James Ransom
Author Notes

Even though it's *technically* a tart, this was all I ate on Pi Day last year. As much as I wished it were summer, so I could make a really good fruit pie or tart with all the fresh peaches and berries, we can’t always get what we want. So I settled (and by settled, I mean I was perfectly happy to select) chocolate and cherry preserves. With regards to the mousse filling, you can use your preferred recipe, be it vegan (made with nondairy milk or avocados) or filled with cream and egg whites. As long as these decadent things exist, life will be pretty good. So grab a fork and cup of coffee and dig in! Recipe inspired by Oh, Ladycakes. —Rebecca Firkser

Test Kitchen Notes

The finished tart was delicious. The salty, cinnamon-flavored crust paired perfectly with the bittersweet chocolate. And the cocao nibs and walnuts added crunch and texture. While the directions say to add espresso and whiskey to the chocolate mousse I feared it would mess up the consistency of the mousse, so I added them to the melted chocolate instead. The tart also needed some more time to set up; a few hours did the trick for me. —Angela

  • Makes 1 9-inch tart
  • Pretzel Crust
  • 2 cups pretzels
  • 5 cinnamon graham crackers
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 6 to 8 tablespoons solid coconut oil
  • Filling
  • 3 cups your favorite chocolate mousse (Editors' note: We're partial to this one:
  • 2 tablespoons whiskey
  • 2 tablespoons espresso
  • 1/4 cup cherry preserves
  • 1 or 2 tablespoons cocoa nibs
  • Chopped walnuts and cashews
  • Shredded coconut
In This Recipe
  1. For the crust: Preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease a tart pan with a removable bottom (I use canola spray). Combine pretzels, graham crackers, sugar, and cinnamon in a food processor and grind until they are flour-like crumbs. Add the coconut oil and pulse until crust resembles wet sand. Press this mixture into a tart pan with your fingers, then use the bottom of a measuring cup to really press it all in. Bake 7 to 10 minutes, checking for the last 3 minutes to make sure it’s not burning. Remove from oven and set on a baking sheet (in case anyone happens to move your tart, we won’t have no surprises re: Removable bottom pan/tart all over floor/etc) to cool.
  2. For the filling: Make the mousse according to directions, adding the espresso and whiskey. Pour mousse into crust and refrigerate.
  3. For the topping: Spoon the preserves over the chocolate layer of the tart. Sprinkle one tablespoon of cocoa nibs over the preserves. Stud the top with chopped nuts and coconut. Ready your forks!

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  • Rebecca Firkser
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Rebecca Firkser is a freelance food writer and recipe developer. Her work has appeared in a number of publications, among them Food52, TASTE, Edible Manhattan, Extra Crispy, The Strategist, and Bon Appetit's Healthyish and Basically. She contributed recipes and words to the book "Breakfast: The Most Important Book About the Best Meal of the Day." Once upon a time, she studied theatre design and art history at Smith College, so if you need a last-minute avocado costume or want to talk about Wayne Thiebaud's cakes, she's your girl.