Lemon Blueberry Mousse Dessert

small bites dessert

My family is made up of horse racing aficionados so when the Kentucky Derby took place over the weekend, our house was bursting with excitement to see which horse would eventually get to wear the garland of roses! Always Dreaming took the top honour and my new dessert creation, lemon blueberry mousse did as well!

quick and easy dessert

The inspiration for these little handheld desserts came from the fact that I have a number of these tiny glass jars. The blogger White Cabana shared her love of the Canadian made Riviera Petit Pot yogurt and I quickly fell in love too. But what to do with all the glass jars that I was accumulating? 

Last week I was at a work lunch saying goodbye to one our interns and the dessert was a deconstructed lemon meringue pie (if you find yourself in Waterloo, Ont. you owe it to yourself to eat at Red House. It's one of my fave restaurants in KW!). The dessert was beyond delicious and I knew I wanted to recreate it at home. 

On Saturday morning I set about coming up with a recipe that would mimic what I had just eaten while using the glass jars. I started by the blueberry compote (I'll include all recipes below). While that sat in the stove simmering to reduce down I made the lemon curd. Once that was cooked and covered, I placed it in the fridge to chill and then made the vanilla mousse. After everything was cool I layered into the jars using a spoon and a pastry bag with no tip and placed in the fridge until race time. I made each item whilst I was cleaning my kitchen Saturday morning so it really didn't seem like much work to make these little treats! 

As for the taste? Pure heaven. The perfect combination of tart, sweet, lemon, vanilla and blueberry. They were little bites of spring sunshine (even though it rained all weekend, again). The family loved them and have already requested them again! Now that I've created this little dessert, I am dreaming up what else I can make with my little glass jars. 

Blueberry Anise Compote 

1 vanilla bean
3/4 cup sugar
1 package fresh blueberries
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup fresh orange juice (squeeze 2 oranges)
6 tablespoons honey
2 star anise
1 lime, grated zest and juice 

With the tip of a knife, split the vanilla bean in half and remove the seeds. Set aside.

In a saucepan heat the sugar and water until dissolved, add the orange juice. Add the vanilla seeds and pod and remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the liquid is syrupy. Remove the vanilla pod and star anise.

Lemon Curd

1/2 cup sugar
zest of 1 lemon, juice of lemon
4 large egg yolks
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes

In a medium saucepan, off heat, whisk together sugar, zest, and egg yolks; whisk in lemon juice and salt.

Add butter and place pan over medium-high. Cook, whisking constantly, until butter has melted, mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, and small bubbles form around the edge of pan, about 5 minutes (do not boil).

Remove pan from heat while continuing to whisk. Pour curd through a fine-mesh sieve into a glass bowl. Press plastic wrap against the surface of curd and refrigerate until cool.

Vanilla Mousse

1/4 package cream cheese
1/4 cup of sugar, divided
3/4 cups whipping cream (or heavy cream)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Beat cream cheese and 1/8 cup of the sugar in large bowl until smooth and creamy.

Beat heavy cream, remaining 1/8 cup sugar and vanilla in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until stiff peaks form. Add 1/2 of the whipped cream mixture to cream cheese mixture; stir until well blended. Gently stir in remaining whipped cream mixture. Cover and refrigerate.

Assemble the lemon blueberry mousse dessert

Using a small spoon, scoop lemon curd and place into the bottom of a glass jar. Place vanilla mousse into a piping bag without a tip. Pipe vanilla mousse on top of lemon curd. Spoon warm blueberry anise compote on top and serve. Enjoy!