Vanilla-Cardamom Goat Cheese Mousse

By Camilla Saulsbury

I am crazy for goat cheese and cardamom, as well as anything that resembles a pudding, so I adore this mousse recipe I created. It is so simple to prepare, yet so impressive, making it perfect for everything from easy entertaining to an impromptu weeknight treat. The recipe can be halved if you have a smaller group, or doubled or tripled for larger gatherings. As much as I love it with fresh berries, it is equally sublime with pears or oranges—with a drizzle of honey—in the fall and mid-winter. 
1 and 1/2 cups chilled whipping cream, divided use 
8 ounces mild, creamy goat cheese 
1/2 cup powdered sugar 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom (or up to 1 teaspoon, depending on your taste) 
Pinch of salt 
3 to 4 cups fresh berries or sliced fresh fruit of your choice. 
Optional: mint sprigs for garnish 
Using electric mixer, beat 1 and 1/4 cups of the whipping cream in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until peaks form. In another medium bowl beat the goat cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla, cardamom, pinch of salt, and remaining 1/4 cup of the whipping cream with the electric mixer (no need to clean the beaters) until blended and smooth. 
Fold the whipped cream into the cheese mixture. Chill 15-30 minutes. Spoon into decorative glasses or dessert cups and top with fresh fruit and (optional) mint sprigs. Makes 8 servings.

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