Over the span of four episodes Jeff Varner has been dominating the game and setting the tone of the season however that two-bit floozy slash my Survivor nemesis Tasha (she cock-blocked my attempts to woo Joe pre-game) was able to wrangle Abi for two successive votes and boot out our dear friend and biggest non-idol-owning-or-person-named-Joe threat, Varner.
We have been friends with Varner for a long time, having met during the filming of Survivor: The Australian Outback where Annelie flew plane in the opening and I supplied Kel with my beef jerky. Much to Probst’s chagrin (we were not friends yet) we loitered around Ponderosa and joined the pre-jury trip where we bonded with Jeff over our mutual hatred for Colby (he had stolen Probst’s heart, obviously).
There was a brief stint following All Stars where we lost contact (we may have leaked spoilers AND blamed it on Varner) however we reconnected while working for Martha Stewert … where Annelie and I had nothing to do with her jail sentence. Trust us and please buy it, Martha can’t know anything.
Varner really took the fan vote to heart and turned up in Cambodia to play hard and reward everyone for his votes and even in an episode with Probsty’s wet dream, aka the DILFs glistening in underwear challenge, Varner was a star, battling hard in his final tribal council and walking into our open arms in Ponderosa with his head held high.
We tried to send a bug flying into Tasha during tribal to force a medivac but sadly it was Varner we were entertaining at Loser Lodge with a big vat of our Jeff Grand Varnier Mousse; well, what Probst left us – he wandered out of the kitchen repeating his commentary from the DILF challenge, Dietz, big and long, it will take some experimenting (hopefully we can join whatever he has planned).
Like Varner’s short stint on the island, the mousse packs a punch with the Grand Marnier cutting through the velvety dark chocolate to woo even the staunchest of Jaffa critics over to the choc-orange side.
Enjoy – like we will when Varner gets his inevitable third chance!
Jeff Grand Varnier Mousse
6 eggs, at room temperature
350g (at least) 70% dark chocolate, preferably Valrhona
75g butter, cold
a good dash of Grand Marnier
a pinch of cream of tartar
Separate the eggs, I prefer by hand for some visceral reason about connecting with your food however do it the easiest way you know, placing the yolks in a small bowl to the side and the whites in a large clean, dry bowl for a stand mixer.
Leave the eggs just hanging out on the bench and get to work melting the chocolate using a double boiler method (aka large bowl over boiling water – just make sure to avoid the bowl touching the water or it may cook rather than melt). Once the chocolate has melted, remove it from the heat and stir in the cold butter. Once the butter is fully combined, add a good dash (about a 2 tbsp, depending ultimately on how much orange flavour you want) Grand Marnier and 4 of the egg yolks. Leave to cool slightly.
Start beating the egg whites on medium in a stand mixer, adding the sugar and a pinch of cream of tartar the egg whites when they start to foam and continue to beat the until they form stiff peaks. Add in the two remaining egg yolks and beat until combined.
When the chocolate cream has cooled slightly, fold through the egg whites in three goes, gently folding through each addition. Spoon the mousse into cups/serving dishes – I went with ceramic mugs and espresso cups – and refrigerate overnight.
Devour and enjoy, with or without what Probst has planned with his share.