chocolatemoussecake01 Foodie Chap: Farallon & Waterbar Restaurants, San Francisco

Emily's Chocolate Mousse Cake (Photo credit by

KCBS radio ‘Foodie Chap’ and CBS 5 television ‘Eye On The Bay’ host Liam Mayclem introduces us to the culinary stars behind the food and wine loved by so many in the Bay Area.

By Liam Mayclem, the KCBS Foodie Chap
Emily is recognized around the world for her award-winning sweet creations. With five cookbooks to her credit and numerous awards, including a 2004 James Beard Award, patrons can always count on a delectable, exotic and innovative end to their meal.

“Cooking to me is about about making people
happy with great desserts.”

– Emily Luchetti, Executive Pastry Chef

Emily has been Executive Pastry Chef at Farallon since 1997 when the restaurant opened. She has been Executive Pastry Chef of Waterbar since it’s opening in 2008. Her history with Farallon and Waterbar’s co-owner Mark Franz spans more than 20 years when they were both part of the opening team of Stars Restaurant in San Francisco. It was at Stars that Emily began her Bay Area cooking career as a line cook, working her way up to lunch chef and eventually stoking her passion for desserts. She was named Executive Pastry Chef at Stars in 1987, a position she held through July 1995. During that time Emily was also co-owned Star Bake, a retail bakery, with Jeremiah Tower.

Emily has written five cookbooks: Stars Desserts (HarperCollins, 1991), Four Star Desserts (HarperCollins, 1995), A Passion for Desserts (Chronicle Books, 2003), and A Passion for Ice Cream (Chronicle Books, 2006). She created the dessert recipes for The Farallon Cookbook (Chronicle Books, 2000). Her first two books were re-released as Classic Stars Desserts in 2007. Her sixth book, The Fearless Baker, will be published in Spring 2011.

Emily graduated from Denison University in 1979 with a BA in Sociology. Following graduation, she attended the New York Restaurant School and worked in various New York establishments (including David Leiderman’s Manhattan Market and The Silver Palate), building her resume and sharpening her culinary skills prior to moving to the Bay Area. She currently resides in Sausalito.

In addition to the James Beard Award, Emily received honors including the 1998 San Francisco Focus Magazine Pastry Chef of the Year, the 2001 Women Chefs & Restaurateurs Golden Whisk Award and the 2003 Food Arts Magazine Silver Spoon Award. In 2009 The San Francisco Chronicle named her one of 20 Visionary Chefs in the Bay Area. She is currently Vice Chair of The James Beard Foundation.

We had the joy of making and baking a delish cake together for our Foodie Chap chat. A sweet treat indeed.



5 Tasty Questions with Chef Emily Luchetti

1. It’s midnight and we go to your fridge, what will find?
A bottle of champagne, salad dressing, milk for cereal, I always have to have milk for cereal and cappuccinos, spinach because I love spinach and have to put spinach in everything and that’s probably about it.

2. What is your favorite fast food?
French fries without a doubt.

3. In your second life you come around again and you’re not a Chef, what will you be?
I would love to work as a meteorologist on the Weather Channel.

4. What is your biggest passion outside of the pastry kitchen?
Cooking. I’d have to say cooking.

5. At your last supper, what will you eat and who will join you at the table?
I am actually the 7th Emily of all of the generations of my family before me so I would invite all the Emily’s to sit around the table and have a great meal and conversation about what it was like living in their times and the different trials and tribulations of life in general and just seeing how the family connected through the years. What I would have would go on for so long the last supper would be continual, but I would start out with champagne, terrine foie gras with homemade brioche. I’d have a frisee salad with lardon and fresh egg. I would have roasted quail, a big rib eye steak. I’d have a green salad, probably creamed spinach. Then for dessert, I’d have several courses at least. I’d have carmel pot de crème, summer pudding, assorted chocolates, and then since it’s the last supper maybe I’d have just a simple bowl of ice cream with homemade carmel sauce.

Liam: Tasty answers, I’ll see you at the table!

Frozen Chocolate Mousse Cake with Chocolate-Covered Pretzels

(Pictured above)

Makes 1 cake, serving 10 to 12

Chocolate Mousse Cake
4 ounces dark chocolate (58 to 62 percent cacao), chopped or broken into 1-inch pieces
5 large egg yolks
1/4 cup brewed coffee
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons orange flavored liqueur (such as Grand Marnier or Cointreau)
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup sour cream

1. Melt the chocolate by putting it in a heat-proof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, making sure the bowl does not touch the water. (You can use a double boiler if you have one.)
Stir and scrape the side of the bowl occasionally with the rubber spatula until the chocolate is smooth and evenly melted.

2. In the second heat-proof bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the coffee, sugar, and liqueur until blended. Put over the saucepan of simmering water and whisk continuously until the mixture has thickened, about 3 minutes. Transfer to the bowl of the stand mixer (or a medium bowl if you’re using a handheld mixer) and whip on medium speed until the eggs have cooled and thickened. On low speed, stir in the melted chocolate.

3. In a clean bowl, whip the heavy cream with the sour cream on medium-high until it forms softly mounded peaks. Using the rubber spatula, fold the cream into the chocolate mixture.

4. Arrange half the chocolate-covered pretzels (see below) in the bottom of a springform pan. Spread the chocolate-cream mixture over the pretzels. Freeze until hard, about 4 hours (overnight is okay too).

5. To remove the mousse cake from the pan, run a small knife around the inside edge of the pan. Release the latch and then remove the ring. To serve, place the remaining chocolate covered
pretzels on top and cut into wedges.

Chocolate-Covered Pretzels
4 ounces dark chocolate (58 to 62 percent cacao), chopped or broken into 1-inch pieces
3 ounces milk chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 cups skinny pretzel sticks (about 3-inches long, 1/8-inch thick; measure by standing them up in 1-cup and 1/2-cup
measuring cups)

1. Melt the dark and milk chocolates in a heat-proof bowl set over (but not touching) a saucepan of simmering water (or use a double boiler if you have one). Stir and scrape the side of the bowl occasionally with the rubber spatula until the chocolate is smooth and evenly melted. Remove the bowl from the heat,
add the pretzels, and stir so they’re well coated with the chocolate. Break up some of the pretzels as you stir.

2. Line the baking sheet with parchment and spread out the pretzels. Let them sit until the chocolate is set, about 30 minutes. The pretzels can be made 1 day ahead and kept at room temperature in a covered container.

Recipe from Emily Luchetti’s cookbook,
“The Fearless Cooker.”


(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services may have contributed to this report.)


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