Sep 15, 2019 Last Updated 6:31 AM, Nov 9, 2017

Duo of Coffee and Chocolate with a Mascarpone Espresso Shot

Duo of Coffee and Chocolate with a Mascarpone Espresso Shot by François Payard.

"François Payard, Owner, François Payard Bakery & François Payard Patisserie in New York and Las Vegas, shares his Duo of Coffee and Chocolate with a Mascarpone Espresso Shot recipe in the Dessert Trio column."


In's latest issue, the Dessert Trio column features three different dessert perspectives on espresso, from three top pastry chefs, François Payard, Michael Laiskonis and Angela Pinkerton. Click the following to see recipes and notes by:
Michael Laiskonis | Angela Pinkerton


Notes: When you give flavor ideas to chefs, each will come back with something a little different. This dessert duo is my interpretation of tiramisú, presented in a very different way. The glass holds a Mascarpone Mousse paired with more assertive elements: a dark chocolate mousse and a very strong espresso granite. I don’t use ladyfingers; instead, I serve a little napoleon on the side, made with chocolate phyllo triangles and alternating layers of Chocolate Mousse and Coffee Pastry Cream.

Yield: 8 servings

Coffee Granite:

  • 17.6 oz/500 g water
  • 2.1 oz/60 g ground espresso beans
  • 2.6 oz/75 g granulated sugar
  • 0.5 oz/15 g coffee extract

1. In a small saucepan, bring the water to a boil. Remove from heat and add the ground espresso. Cover the pan and allow to infuse for 10 minutes. 

2. Strain the mixture through a coffee filter into a bowl. Stir in the sugar and coffee extract, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Pour into a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan or shallow container and freeze for at least 2 hours, or until firm. 

3. When ready to serve, use a fork to scrape the coffee block to form the granite.

Mascarpone Mousse:

  • 4.6 oz/130 g granulated sugar
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 17.6 oz/500 g mascarpone cheese

1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together 2.6 oz/75 g of the granulated sugar with the egg yolks by hand. Place the bowl over a pot filled one-third of the way with simmering water and heat, whisking constantly, until the yolk mixture is thickened and is hot to the touch. Place the bowl in the mixer stand and, using the whisk attachment, whip the mixture at high speed until completely cool. Set aside. 

2. In another bowl of the electric mixer, using a clean whisk attachment, whip the whites at medium speed until soft peaks begin to form. Gradually add the remaining 1.9 oz/55 g sugar and whip at high speed until the whites are glossy and form stiff peaks. 

3. Place the mascarpone in a large bowl and whisk it until soft and smooth. Gently fold in the yolk mixture. Fold in the meringue. Cover the bowl and refrigerate until ready to use.

Coffee Pastry Cream:

  • 17 oz/484 g whole milk 
  • 3.5 oz/100 g granulated sugar
  • 0.8 oz/24 g instant coffee powder
  • 1.4 oz/40 g cornstarch
  • 5 large egg yolks 
  • 0.5 oz/14 g unsalted butter
  • 6.3 oz/180 g heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks

1. In a medium saucepan, bring the milk to a boil over medium heat. Stir in the coffee powder until dissolved and remove from heat. 

2. In a medium bowl, combine the sugar and cornstarch. Whisk in the egg yolks, whisking until the mixture is pale. Whisk about ¼ of the milk into the yolk mixture, then whisk the yolk mixture into the pan with the remaining milk. Cook over medium-high heat, whisking constantly, until the custard thickens and boils. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the butter until it is completely melted. Scrape the pastry cream into a stainless steel bowl and cover the surface of the pastry cream with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming. Set the bowl in an ice bath and stir frequently until cold. Gently fold in the whipped cream. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Chocolate Phyllo Triangles:

  • 3.5 oz/100 g clarified butter
  • 1.1 oz/32 g cocoa powder
  • 8 (9” x 14”) sheets phyllo dough

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line 2 half sheet pans with parchment paper and brush the paper with butter. 

2. In a small saucepan, melt the clarified butter over medium heat and whisk in the cocoa powder. 

3. Place a sheet of phyllo dough on the parchment paper and brush with some of the melted cocoa-butter. Place another sheet of phyllo on top. Repeat the layering until you have used 4 phyllo sheets. Brush the last sheet with butter and repeat on the other sheet pan with the remaining phyllo and cocoa-butter. Refrigerate the phyllo layers for 30 minutes, or until the butter has firmed up. 

4. Using a ruler as a guide, cut the phyllo layers into 3 ½” squares. Cut the squares in half diagonally, forming a total of 24 triangles. Space the triangles onto a silicone baking mat-lined half-sheet pan and place another silicone baking mat on top to keep them flat. Bake for 10 minutes, or until crisp. Remove the top mat and cool the triangles on the sheet pan, set on a wire rack.

Chocolate Mousse:

  • 15.87 oz/450 g heavy cream
  • 10.5 oz/300 g bittersweet chocolate 72%, chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4.2 oz/120 g granulated sugar 
  • 2.1 oz/60 g water

1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream at medium-high speed to soft peaks. Cover the bowl and set aside in the refrigerator. 

2. Place the chocolate in a medium, microwave-safe glass bowl and microwave on 50% power, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted. Set aside. 

3. Place the eggs in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and begin whipping at medium speed. Meanwhile, combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and cook over high heat until it comes to a full boil. Allow to boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat and very slowly add to the whipping eggs. Increase the speed to high and whip the eggs until they are doubled in volume and completely cool, about 6 minutes. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand and whisk in one-third of the melted chocolate (ideally, the chocolate should be at 104°F when it’s folded in; if it’s too cool, rewarm it gently over the hot water). Gently fold in the remaining chocolate. Fold in the whipped cream, one-third at a time. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Chocolate Sauce:

  • 8.8 oz/250 g heavy cream
  • 8.8 oz/250 g granulated sugar
  • 5.3 oz/150 g unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons

1. In a small saucepan, bring the cream to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove from the heat. 

2. In a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the sugar with 1 oz/30 g water and cook over medium-high heat, occasionally washing down the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush to prevent crystals from forming, until the syrup caramelizes and turns a dark amber color. Slowly add the hot cream and stir over the heat until any hardened bits of sugar are dissolved and the mixture is smooth. Whisk the butter in, 0.5 oz/14 g at a time, whisking well after each addition until completely incorporated. Let it cool and refrigerate, covered, for at least 24 hours before using (or up to 5 days). Reheat gently over low heat before using.


  • Cocoa powder for sprinkling

1. Scrape the Chocolate Mousse into a pastry bag fitted with a medium, plain tip (Ateco #6). Scrape the Coffee Pastry Cream into a pastry bag fitted with a medium, plain tip (Ateco #6). Pipe some mousse onto one of the Chocolate Phyllo Triangles. Place another triangle on top of the mousse and pipe a layer of Coffee Pastry Cream on top. Pipe on more mousse and top with a final Chocolate Phyllo Triangle. Place the napoleon on a plate on its side, with the points facing up.

2. Fill a shot glass one-third of the way with Chocolate Mousse. Top another third of the glass with Coffee Granite. Spoon the Mascarpone Mousse on top, filling the glass. Sprinkle with cocoa powder. Place the glass on the plate and spoon some Chocolate Sauce on the plate. 

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