Frozen Pumpkin Cranberry Mousse

This was a very happy accident that came about as part of a failed experiment with pumpkin seed macarons.  I haven’t given up on my quest for a decent alternative to tree-nut (the husband is allergic to all tree nuts) macarons, but thus far my attempts (and there have now been four to date) to make these elusive, light as air french delicacies with pumpkin seeds have proven to be completely without success.

This particular frozen treat began as a possible filling for my pumpkin seed macarons.  Cranberry pumpkin mousse seemed like a fittingly complimentary flavor profile for a cookie made from pepitas.  Unfortunately, in addition to my macarons cracking, not growing feet and being in general limp and lifeless, my egg whites for this mousse never attained the stiff-peak stage necessary for successful mousse creation.  However, the addition of a little bit of leftover white-chocolate whipped cream  helped lighten things up.  And an overnight rest in the freezer resulted in a lovely sherbet-like frozen pumpkin cranberry delight. Here’s the breakdown:

2 cups fresh cranberries
1 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
2 egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup white chocolate whipped cream

Cook pumpkin butter, cranberries and 1 cup sugar in a saucepan over medium heat until sugar has dissolved and cranberries start to pop – about 7-10 minutes.  Beat egg yolks in a heat-proof bowl, and add a bit of the hot pumpkin mixture to the yolks to temper them.  Once tempered, add egg yolk mixture to pumpkin mixture and cook, stirring constantly, over low heat until mixutre thickens.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.  Place in fridge to cool completely.

After the pumpkin custard has cooled, whip your egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy.  Slowly add the 1/2 cup of sugar and whip to stiff peaks (or not-so-stiff peaks as was the case for me).

Fold white-chocolate whipped cream in with the pumpkin custard.  Then fold beaten egg whites into this mixture.  Pour entire thing into a rectangular dish (9×13 or so), cover with plastic wrap and freeze overnight.

I think this would be great served with some of these ginger molasses cookies, or scooped over these fresh warm gingerbread bundts.


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