This week I’m headed to sunny, hot Austin, Texas for our annual company summit. Which means I’m packing, unpacking, repacking, changing my mind about what clothes to pack six times, checking the weather repeatedly because I forget what it said 15 minutes ago.
Adding and removing three sticks of deodorant because sweat pours off me like a waterfall, stressing out over whether or not I should bring flats and sandals, and loudly cursing the tiny ass one quart bag of liquids rule. I refuse to pay to check a bag just because I need a tad more room for liquids. COME ON.
Is anyone reading this with the TSA? If so, can you speak to the powers that be and explain that as a ghost white woman with eczema and acne, I require entirely too many products to keep my skin from being on fire and I just need a little more room. Just a little. Because on a daily basis I need:
a soothing toner
three different serums and lotions just to keep my face from being bright red and burning
a sunscreen specifically for my face
a cooling face mask overnight to keep it from peeling
a gel medication for when I get eczema flare ups
a calming face wash
And then I still need to pack sunscreen for the rest of my body, shampoo, conditioner, leave in conditioner, hairspray, body wash, a medicated eczema body lotion, toothpaste, and eye gel because I have severe dry eye.
And a brightening under eye cream because I have bags that rival some black purses.
And a Tide pen because I’m a hot mess.
ALL OF THAT DOESN’T FIT IN A QUART BAG. I’ve tried using the smallest travel containers I can find that will still fit the amount of each thing that I need for the duration of my travel, and it still doesn’t fit.
Women who travel with only a carry on – how do you do it?!None of that is even makeup or “nice to have” stuff. I always end up sacrificing some of it, and my skin suffers.
This last trip I had a little bottle of dry shampoo that prevented the little quart bag from closing, and then took it from me at security. SERIOUSLY? Good grief, Charlie Brown.
I just can’t justify having to spend another $30 each way when I already have to spend so much on the products themselves to keep myself sane. SIGH. #sensitiveskinproblems. And that’s what really grinds my gears.
Okay, I’m done complaining. I apologize. Flying just makes me crazy.
A great way to use strawberries
Another thing that makes me a little crazy is when I don’t get to fruit before it goes bad. I love fruit so much that I always buy too much of it with the best intentions, and then we get too busy and don’t use it quickly enough and it hurts my heart to have to throw it away.
I did this recently with strawberries. Bought two quarts with the intention of making a couple different recipes, and then I got sick and wasn’t going near food preparation.
Went in to grab a handful to add to my breakfast the other morning and, bam. One container was all fuzzy and rubbery. Sadface.
The other wasn’t too bad, but it was definitely on its way out. I needed to use them in a recipe where they’d be cooked so that it wouldn’t matter, and this recipe is one I’ve been meaning to make for probably a year now.
Naming this recipe was tough
I’ve struggled with what to call this recipe. Strawberry Lemon Mascarpone Mousse? Lemon Mascarpone Mousse with Strawberry Puree? Super Yummy Lemon Mousse with Freaking Strawberries In It?
Regardless of the name, it’s delicious and decadent. The lemon mascarpone mousse is thick, creamy, and slightly sweet. The strawberry puree is tart with just enough sweetness to be the perfect accompaniment to the mousse.
Layer it or not, the choice is yours
I like to do mine in layers, starting with the strawberry puree on the bottom. You certainly don’t have to do that if you don’t want to.
You could load up your serving dish with mousse and then pile the puree on top, or put all the puree on the bottom so you have to dig for it like hidden treasure. Do whatever makes you happy.
Don’t try to make it perfect
I don’t go out of my way to make the layers even. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
Just add some puree, add some mousse, puree, mousse, puree and call it a day.
No fussing over how much is in each layer, or trying to find some way to use a level to make sure each one is perfectly straight. Stop that. It’s going in your stomach, and your stomach doesn’t care how symmetrical it may have been on the outside.
Fresh strawberry slices on top are optional, but encouraged
The addition of puree on top with a couple slices of strawberry make for a nice presentation, but certainly aren’t required.
The gorgeous color of the puree might be my favorite thing. It’s this deep red with almost magenta tones and I want it as a nail polish color.
Essie – get on that, plz.
How many servings does this recipe make?
I love me some dessert. So for our house, this is perfect for two good-sized servings that get shoveled into our faces.
If you’d like to keep the portions smaller, this can easily be turned into four servings. Frankly, that’s a more reasonable way to do it… but I’m not a reasonable person.
In a medium saucepan, heat strawberries, sugar and lemon over medium heat for 10 minutes. The strawberries should be reduced to a juicy, bubbly jam.
Either transfer to a heat proof bowl and use an immersion blender(aff link), or transfer to a food processor to blend into a smoother mixture. It doesn’t need to be perfectly smooth – but if you’d prefer it smoother, just push it through a fine mesh sieve(aff link) to remove the seeds.
Place in the fridge to cool while you prep the mousse.
Note: I have not personally experienced this, but some readers have commented that their mixture curdled when they added the lemon juice. I have personally had success by folding the lemon juice in at the end, and also by combing it with all the ingredients except for the mascarpone cheese (and then adding the mascarpone to combine with the hand mixer(aff link) at the end).
In a medium bowl, combine mascarpone cheese and 1 tablespoon sugar, and use a hand mixer(aff link) or stand mixer to beat on high speed until combined.
In another medium bowl, combine heavy cream, 1/2 tablespoon sugar, vanilla and salt and use a hand mixer to beat on high speed until it forms soft peaks.
Fold the heavy cream mixture and lemon juice into the mascarpone mixture until completely combined.
Spoon mousse mixture into a pastry bag to pipe into serving dishes.
Dividing between two serving dishes (or 4, if you’d like smaller portions): Start with a a spoonful of strawberry puree, then a layer of mousse, and repeat twice more until you’ve used all the ingredients.
Top with diced strawberries and/or fresh lemon zest and serve. Enjoy!
Sounded wonderful - however, LEMON juice combined with Dairy - it ended up a curdled mess. I salvaged what I could by putting the mixture through a sieve. I will try this again, but WILL NOT be mixing any lemon juice into the mascarpone/whipped cream mixture.
A note for Michelle - if you look up "stabilized whipped cream" you'll find what you're looking for. I use stabilized whipped cream all the time and will probably use that next time I try this making the whipped cream and then combine that with the whipped mascarpone.
Tuesday 15th of June 2021
I actually have a very popular recipe for stabilized mascarpone whipped cream, thanks for making that suggestion for Michelle: https://stressbaking.com/stabilized-mascarpone-whipped-cream/
I'm sorry that this recipe didn't work out for you. I haven't experienced what you did when I fold the lemon juice in at the end, so I'm sorry to hear that. I'll do some testing of other methods for combining it aside from the way I've always made it to help prevent that result for others.
Tuesday 2nd of February 2021
Hi, can I use unflavored gelatine to make this into a more stable mousse? If so, which part of the recipe can I add the gelatine. Thank You
Wednesday 3rd of February 2021
I'm not sure, as I've never added gelatine to this recipe. Sorry!
Friday 23rd of October 2020
Very good and easy to do
Sunday 25th of October 2020
So glad you thought so - thanks for coming back to leave a comment and rating to share your experience!
Monday 13th of January 2020
Do you think frozen strawberries could be used for the puree?
Monday 13th of January 2020
Sure! If you use them from frozen, you'll have a "slushier" puree, but if you let them thaw beforehand I think that would work well, too.
Leanne | Crumb Top Baking
Sunday 2nd of June 2019
I'm absolutely with you Leslie! I have no idea how people travel with just a carry on. I have way too many 'essential' toiletries. They weigh down my suitcase, so there is no way I could manage a carry on! Hope you enjoyed Austin! This strawberry mousse dessert just screams summer. Love the combo of strawberry and lemon. And thanks for the shout out on my pancakes! Appreciate it!
Monday 3rd of June 2019
Right? SOMEONE TELL ME YOUR SECRETS.
Hi there! I’m Leslie and I use baking as an outlet for relieving stress and anxiety to provide you with easy to follow homemade recipes and a little humor. About Leslie ⟶