Creamy and fluffy lemon mousse-filled lemons make a beautiful and delicious springtime dessert … no bowls required! We couldn’t resist using hollowed-out lemons for serving this homemade lemon curd mousse —especially for Easter! They look like little Easter eggs and the serving size is just right after a rich holiday meal! This elegant lemon mousse is a dreamy combination of homemade lemon curd, whipped cream, and meringue. Soooooo good!
Mousse desserts are so lovely and really not that difficult to make. Last year we made a strawberry curd mousse, which was heavenly. And of course, it goes without saying that chocolate mousse is one of the most satisfying ways to end a fabulous meal. But, in the spring … there is nothing quite like lemon desserts, and lemon mousse, along with lemon bars are some of our very favorites. This recipe can be made with either Eureka or Meyer lemons, and both are delicious!
We love a traditional mousse made with egg whites, because it keeps the mousse light and fluffy, but we prefer to make our meringue with pasteurized egg whites for food safety reasons. Really, who wants salmonella? When using pasteurized egg whites from a carton, be sure to beat them with either lemon juice or cream of tartar. We prefer using cream of tartar. You will need to use 1/8 teaspoon of cream of tartar or 1/4 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice for every egg white equivalent, which is 2 tablespoons of egg whites from the carton. Just add it to the egg whites and beat until frothy. Then beat in the sugar and you will have whipped egg whites that hold their peaks beautifully.
This lemon mousse recipe is made up of three parts: meringue, lemon curd, and whipped cream. Gently fold all together to get a luscious fluffy and creamy mousse! Serve them with a dollop of more whipped cream, fresh raspberries, or blueberries for an elegant dessert.
It’s so fun to use the lemons for serving, and to hollow them out, it’s best to use a hand-held wooden juicer so that you are able to keep the lemons intact. We tried using the electric juicer, but it ripped the lemon towards the top due to the pressure. But with the wooden juicing tool, you can be very gentle on the lemon shell while still getting out all of the lemon juice. You may end up with more lemon juice than you need for this recipe, but be sure to save it! You can even freeze the extra juice for another recipe later!
The mousse should last several days in a covered container in the refrigerator, but we don’t suggest spooning the mousse into the hollowed-out lemons until just a few hours before serving. Then, be sure to refrigerate them until you are actually ready to serve! Add the flowers just before serving to make sure they are fresh!
Lemon Mousse Lemons
- 1 double boiler optional
- 2 large whole eggs
- 2 large egg yolks
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp. lemon zest
- 4 tbsp. pasteurized egg whites
- 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
- 1 tbsp. granulated sugar
- 12 hallowed-out lemons for serving the mousse in
- 12 edible flowers for garnish
Fresh Lemon Curd Mousse
- Fill the bottom of the double boiler with water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to keep at a simmer.
- Mix eggs, eggs yolks, 2/3 cup sugar, lemon zest, and lemon juice in the top pan of the double boiler. If you don't have a double boiler, simply fill a medium pot with water about 2/3 full. Then place the egg mixture in a bowl that can sit on top of the pot, but with the bottom of the bowl able to reach the water. (*If all else fails, just cook the lemon curd in a saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened. We've done this many times!)
- Place the bowl with the mixture over the water and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon or whisk, until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. This takes anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes, depending upon the heat.
- Remove the curd from the heat and cool for about 15 minutes. Then cover the lemon curd with a piece of plastic wrap directly on the curd. Refrigerate until completely chilled, at least 30 minutes. This can be made ahead of time and refrigerated until you're ready to make the mousse.
- For the meringue, place the egg whites in the bowl of your mixer. Add cream of tartar and beat until frothy. Add sugar and continue to beat until stiff peaks form and egg whites become shiny.
- Gently fold the beaten egg whites into the lemon curd.
- Whip the heavy cream to stiff peaks and gently fold it into the lemon curd-egg white mixture.
- You can store the mousse in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight and then stuff the hallowed-out lemons when you're ready to serve.
- To prepare the lemons, cut the rounded end off the bottom of the lemon so that it will stand flat. Cut the top 3/4-inch of the lemon off the top and discard or save for another use. Now, holding the lemon in your hand, juice the lemon using a wooden hand-held juicer, saving the juice, and continue to rotate the juicer so that the membranes of the lemon are flattened to make room for the mousse.
- Fill your lemons with the lemon mousse all the way to the top of the lemons. Garnish with edible flowers. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve chilled.