Parmigiano-Reggiano Crisps with Goat Cheese Mousse
Caterer Karen Miller’s adaptation of a recipe from the French Laundry cookbook. Transport the crisps to the picnic site very carefully. Prepared by publisher Gail Norton.
1 c. finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (from a moist piece of cheese)
6 oz. chèvre, or other soft cheese
4 to 6 T. whipping cream
1 T. minced Italian parsley
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
small dice of tomato and fresh basil for garnish
Preheat the oven to 325°F. To make the parmesan crisps, line a baking sheet with parchment, a Silpat or use a nonstick baking sheet. Sprinkle about 2 t. of the grated cheese in one corner of the baking sheet and spread it into a 2-inch circle. Repeat with the rest of the cheese, leaving at least 1 inch between the circles. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the crisps are a rich golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool for about 1 minute to firm the crisps enough so you can remove them with a spatula. When cool enough, lay the crisps onto a large serving platter.
To make the mousse, place the chèvre in a food processor and process until smooth. Add 4 T. of the cream through the feed tube and continue to process until the mixture is smooth but has enough body to hold a shape when piped through a pastry bag. If necessary, add a little more cream. Add the parsley and salt and pepper to taste and mix just to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning. The mousse can be refrigerated for 2 to 3 days; let stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes to soften slightly before piping. Place the mousse in a pastry bag fitted with a medium star tip. Pipe 2 to 3 t. of mousse onto each parmesan crisp, garnish with tomato and basil, and serve. Serves 6 to 12 people.