Chocolate Beignets with Banana Mousseline and Praline Ice Cream
Chef Joy Jessup of Rene Bistrot – New Orleans, LA
Adapted by StarChefs
Rising Pastry Chef Joy Jessup

Rene Bistrot
New Orleans, LA

November 2003

Philosophy on cooking:
I really concentrate on flavor and quality. I’m not about that whole architecture trend. I concentrate on intense flavors and the quality of the work that I do.

Culinary school:
California Culinary Academy

Formerly of:
The Grill Room at the Windsor Court Hotel – New Orleans, LA;
Kokkari – San Francisco, CA;
La Folie – San Francisco, CA;
The Cornelian Room – San Francisco, CA;

Tools you can't live without:
- KitchenAid mixer
- scale
- offset spatula

Favorite ingredients:
Eggs, chocolate, different sugars and honeys

Three tips for dessert success:
1. Keep organized.
2. Pay attention to what you’re making.
3. Taste everything you do as you go along.

Mentors/pastry heroes:
Tom Gumpel, Stephen Durfee and Emily Luchetti

Favorite desserts:
Sorbet, Ice Cream, and Chocolate Mousse

Short bio:
Joy Jessup trained at the Valrhona Ecole du Grand Chocolat in Tain Hermitage, France and graduated from the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco.

Joy joined the Renaissance Hotels of New Orleans team in May of 2003 and will assist in the opening of the Renaissance Arts Hotel and the new restaurant force with Chefs Rene Bajeux and Bingo Starr. Joy was formerly the Executive Pastry chef at The Grill Room, Windsor Court Hotel. Prior to joining The Grill Room in 2001, she taught the Pastry Certificate program at the Greystone Campus of Culinary Institute of America. Joy has consulted for several restaurants in the San Francisco area and has held positions at the renowned Kokari, La Folie and Carnelian Room in San Francisco and Evvia in Palo Alto, California.

8 servings


    Chocolate Filling
  • 3 ounces butter
  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • 12 ounces Valrhona Caraibe chocolate
  • 3 ounces water

  • Beignet Dough
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 ounces butter
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 ¼ cup flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • Mousseline
  • 4 cups milk
  • 6 bananas
  • 7 ounces sugar
  • 6 ounces flour
  • 12 egg yolks
  • Whipped cream, as needed

  • Ice Cream
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup pecans, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • Praline Sauce
  • ½ pound sugar
  • ½ pound brown sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • ¼ pound butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • ½ cup heavy cream


For Filling:
Combine butter, cream, and chocolate and melt. Stir in water. Pour into 1 ½ - inch disc mold and freeze - If you do not have a disc mold, chill and then scoop with 1 ounce scoop and flatten to make inserts.

For Beignet Dough:
Combine sugar, salt, butter, and water in saucepan and bring to boil. Add flour and mix with wooden spoon until flour is absorbed and dough forms and leaves sides of pan. Transfer to electric mixer and on low speed, add 1 egg at a time until all are incorporated and dough is shiny and elastic. Add vanilla. Roll dough out on floured work surface to 1/8 - inch and refrigerate 1 hour. Remove from refrigerator and cut into 2 - inch discs. Take 2 discs and wrap around 1 filling insert, closing sides to encase. When finished, hold in freezer until ready to fry and serve.

For Mousseline:
Combine milk and bananas with 3 ½ ounces sugar in medium saucepan and simmer 20 minutes. Strain and discard banana. Whisk flour, yolks and remaining sugar together and temper into milk. Cook until mixture comes to boil, cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent from scorching. Strain and refrigerate. When ready to use fold in ½ cup whipped cream for every cup of mousseline.

For Ice Cream:
Combine butter and pecans in saucepan and cook until toasted. Whisk sugar and yolks until combined. Combine cream and the milk in small saucepan and bring to boil. Temper into yolk mixture and cook to 180°F, then strain and refrigerate. Stir in pecans and vanilla and freeze in ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.

For Praline Sauce:
Dry melt sugars in sauté pan. Boil water while sugar is melting, and slowly add to caramelized sugar. Stir in butter and vanilla. Cook mixture to soft ball stage (235°F) and whisk in heavy cream. Serve warm.

To Serve:
Fry beignets at 350°F in oil until golden. Place 3 beignets on top of mound of Mousseline, and top with scoop of ice cream and drizzle of sauce.