Travel Bites

By Gwen Ashley Walters


Coconut Mousse
with Orange Vanilla Compote

From Lake Placid Lodge, New York
10 to 12 servings


Start this recipe the day before or the morning of the day you plan to serve so that the mousse has time to properly set and the compote may chill. I increased the coconut just a bit because I love coconut. If you want only a "hint" of coconut, omit the coconut extract. The lodge serves this dessert in a chocolate shell, topped with a wafer-thin coconut cookie.


1/3 cup sweetened coconut milk, divided
2 (1/4-ounce) packages unflavored gelatin
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon coconut extract (optional)
4 egg whites
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup toasted coconut (optional garnish)*
Orange-Vanilla Compote


1. From the 1/3 cup of coconut milk, remove 4 tablespoons and place in a small saucepan with the 2 packages of gelatin.

2. Heat over low heat, just until gelatin dissolves, stirring constantly (about 1 minute). Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

3. Meanwhile, whip the heavy cream to soft peaks and fold in the rest of the coconut milk. Add the coconut extract, if using.

4. Whip the egg whites to soft peaks in another bowl, slowly adding the 1/2 cup sugar toward the end of the process.

5. Fold the gelatin mixture into the egg white meringue and then fold in the whipped cream. Place in a covered container and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours or overnight.

6. To serve, scoop the mousse with an ice cream scoop into a small decorative bowl. Ladle with 3 or 4 tablespoons of the Orange-Vanilla Compote and top with a wafer cookie or toasted coconut (optional).

*To toast coconut, heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread coconut on an ungreased sheet pan and bake for 7 to 10 minutes, or until golden brown, stirring often.


Orange Vanilla Compote

Makes 2 cups

8 oranges
1/2 cup orange juice
3/4 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean split lengthwise
2 tablespoons Cointreau or other orange-flavored liqueur
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons cold water

1. Remove the peel and white pith from the oranges. Cut out the segments and set aside. Squeeze the juice from the remaining pulp to equal 1/2 cup.

2. Boil the juice, sugar, vanilla bean and liqueur in a small saucepan over medium-high heat.

3. Stir the cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of cold water to make a very thin paste.

4. As the juice mixture is boiling, whisk the cornstarch paste into the juice. Reduce to a simmer and cook gently for five minutes.

5. Remove from heat and add the reserved orange segments. Chill before using. Remove the vanilla bean just before serving.


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Copyright © 2001, Gwen Ashley Walters. All rights reserved.

Gwen Ashley Walters is cookbook author, cooking teacher, food writer and Certified Culinary Professional with a degree in Culinary Arts. Gwen's travel guide/cookbooks, The Great Ranch Cookbook, (1998) and The Cool Mountain Cookbook, (2001) were published by Pen & Fork Communications.

This page created June 2001