The Cookbook Challenge: Week 10 Cool recipe – Chocolate mocha dacquoise terrine

by April@MyFoodTrail on January 25, 2010

in Baking, Cookbook Challenge 2010, Other desserts, Recipes

The obvious recipe for me to make for this week’s “cool” theme was more frozen dessert. I was going to try a sorbet since I have only made an ice cream and frozen yoghurt, but it seemed rather boring since I have used my ice cream maker the previous two weeks in a row!

I was flipping through the AWW Cook Cookbook and found a recipe for a meringue terrine. It sounded interesting and I have never made meringue before (well, I did try macarons once). Even though the meringue is baked, it needed to be chilled overnight and was served cold, so it fits into the “cool” theme.

The terrine is basically layers of meringue, chocolate and mocha butter cream. The note to the recipe says “A classic dacquiose is two meringue layers sandwiched with a buttercream filling. It originated in the French town of Dax, whose residents are called Dacquois. It is served cold, often with a complementary seasonal fruit or with nuts mixed into the buttercream. This makes an elegant dessert for a dinner party”.

Hmm, notice the words “elegant dessert”? Mine actually turned out to be a cracking mess! There was no guide as to how the egg whites should look after adding the sugar and what the correct way to fold the cocoa in so perhaps I didn’t do it correctly! It wasn’t the prettiest looking dessert, but it was a nice concept with the layers. Someone said it was like a modern chocolate pavlova but better!

I made a half serve by halving the ingredients and making my rectangles 10 x 12.5cm, but below is the recipe for a full serve.

Chocolate mocha dacquoise terrine

4 egg whites
1 cup (220g) caster sugar
2 tbsp cocoa powder
200g dark eating chocolate, chopped coarsely
¾ cup (180ml) cream
2 tsp cocoa powder, extra for dusting

1. Preheat oven to 150C (130C fan forced). Line oven trays with baking paper and draw three 10 x 25cm rectangles, leaving adequate space between each.

2. Beat egg whites in a small bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, and beat until sugar dissolves between additions. I wasn’t sure how much to beat it, but my end meringue was glossy and held its shape when I lifted the whisk out.

After beating the egg whites with the sugar

3. Fold in sifted cocoa gently until all combined. Try to be gentle as not to deflate the mixture.

4. Spread meringue mixture evenly over drawn rectangles.

Meringue mixture ready for the oven (excuse the two little ones, it was the leftovers!)

5. Bake, uncovered, about 45 minutes or until meringue is dry. Turn off oven and cool meringues in oven with door ajar.

Meringues out of the oven – they expanded & stuck together but weren’t difficult to pull apart

6. Meanwhile, stir chocolate and cream in a small saucepan over low heat until smooth. Transfer to a small bowl and refrigerate until firm. Using a fork, stir mixture for about 20 seconds or until just changed in colour and spreadable.

7. Make mocha butter cream (see below).

8. Place one meringue layer on serving plate and spread with half the chocolate mixture and then top with half of the butter cream.

Layer of chocolate

9. Top with another meringue layer, spread with the remaining chocolate mixture, then with remaining butter cream. Top with last layer of meringue.

Layer of mocha butter cream

10. Cover and refrigerate 3 hours or overnight. Dust with extra cocoa powder just before serving. I left out the cocoa for dusting.

Layers all assembled

Mocha Buttercream
1 tbsp instant coffee granules
2 tbsp boiling water
100g unsalted butter, softened
2 ¼ cups (360g) icing sugar, sifted

Dissolve coffee granules in the boiling water in a small bowl, then cool.

2. Beat butter in a small bowl with electric mixer until pale in colour.

3. Gradually beat in sifted sugar, half a cup at a time.

4. Beat in coffee mixture.

Results: My meringues ended up with an air layer in between so they were very easy to break, hence why it is not the prettiest looking dessert. The texture of the terrine was unusual – you got the dissolving meringue which was slightly chewy, mixed in the sweetness of the buttercream and chocolate. It was quite similar to a macaron. This dessert is very much a sugar overload – it is quite sweet and rich because the layers of the chocolate and buttercream are thick so you can only have a small piece. Even though I’m not a coffee fan, the mocha buttercream was good and I would use the combination of chocolate with the mocha buttercream in a layer cake.

Would I make it again? No, it’s a bit too sweet for me. If I did make it again, I would make the layers of chocolate and buttercream much thinner.

Over & Out, Rilsta xx

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Maree January 25, 2010 at 3:56 pm

This sounds quite delicous. Its hard to make brown things look tasty- this still looks totally devourable!


Ange January 25, 2010 at 6:26 pm

I do love a chocolate pav which this sounds similar to, I bet it would be fantastic with piles of berries to cut through the sugar

Reply January 25, 2010 at 7:00 pm

I actually think it looks really delicious the way the meringue has crumbled.


Iron Chef Shellie January 25, 2010 at 9:22 pm

I would love to have tried a bite of this!

I have NO ideas about this week!


penny aka jeroxie January 25, 2010 at 9:59 pm

OMG! That is a very nice looking meringue sandwich….


OohLookBel January 26, 2010 at 12:02 am

One word: 'YUM!'. Your dessert looks really good, especially the dacquoise. Would serving it with double cream make it any less sweet?


Cherrie Pie January 26, 2010 at 9:28 am

That's not ugly! It looks so delicious and I bet it tasted delicious too.


Hannah January 26, 2010 at 1:19 pm

I honestly don't think it looks like a mess – It looks like crumbly crunchy dense deliciousness. Except I know it'd probably be too sweet for me too… But in my dreams it's heaven 😛


Agnes January 26, 2010 at 8:23 pm

I've made this recipe before, and I agree that it's a sugar overload! It was way too sweet for me too.


Anonymous January 27, 2010 at 10:13 pm

Hi Rilsta,

I'm a huge fan of your blog. i love all the pictures! Especially that they are step by step so i can check where i am at when i try the recipes!

Thank you for your blogs!


Rilsta January 28, 2010 at 9:25 am

Hi Maree: Thanks! Well, chocolate is brown and it always looks good! 🙂

Hi Ange: Yeh, it would be a good idea to serve it with some berries!

Hi Leigh: Thanks! 🙂

Hi Shellie: I'm sure you'll think of something great! You always do! 🙂

Hi Penny: Hehe, I was thinking it looks a bit like a multilayered burger!

Hi Belle: I guess a non-sweet cream would probably help make it less sweet, but doesn't help with the calories! 😛

Hi Cherrie: Thanks! It was rich but delicious!

Hi Hannah: Thanks! 🙂 I have a sweet tooth, but this was too sweet even for me!

Hi Agnes: The meringue itself wasn't as sweet as normal meringues – it's definitely the buttercream and chocolate that makes it sugar overload!

Hi Anonymous: Aww, shucks! Thanks so much! You have made my day!! 🙂


Conor @ HoldtheBeef January 28, 2010 at 9:46 am

Although when they turn into 'cracking mess' these types of dessert don't look so 'pretty', I think they look more delicious this way, with all the broken bits just begging to be scooped up and eaten. I'd love a piece!

What I find annoying with these types of desserts though is that they really don't keep very well, but if they look this tasty I guess that's not such an issue 😉


Adrian @ Food Rehab January 28, 2010 at 7:50 pm

hehe, pretty? Who cares, so long as it's indulgent which I can see it is! Good job…just imagining the meringue melting in my mouth..

um…when am I getting a piece? You know I just work nearby….hint… 😉


Mrs Multitasker January 29, 2010 at 7:37 pm

It looks really good to me =) Is it supposed to be completely uncrackly?? I think it looks more appetising this way!


Rilsta February 5, 2010 at 10:50 am

Hi Conor: I should have saved one for you! Actually, this kept for about 2-3 days in the fridge without the meringue being affected too bad… or maybe I couldn't tell with so much chocolate and buttercream!

Hi Adrian: Hehehe! I'll have to make a stop by your office next time! 😉

Hi Mrs Multitasker: I'm not sure really because there was no photo in the cookbook!


Two fit and fun gals February 13, 2010 at 5:08 pm

oh wow this looks awesome!


Rilsta February 15, 2010 at 3:19 pm

Hi Betty: Thanks!


Craig Jones September 6, 2012 at 1:07 pm

This terrine was superb. I find that popping a few blueberries on top does nicely to cut through the otherwise pleasant sweetness. Very time consuming procedure, but worth it!


April@MyFoodTrail September 6, 2012 at 4:18 pm

Thanks for the feedback. What a great idea to add blueberries! Come to think of it, fresh raspberries would work well too, even fresh strawberries.


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