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Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Molten Chocolate Cake

So the restaurant I work at totally had a record night on Valentine's Day. And I'm leftover with all these molten chocolate cakes that I simply adore. I seriously have a ton of them leftover, so I don't mind sharing the recipe. Many Chefs I know won't often share recipes for the sake of job security, et cetera. But I believe that we're all in this together, and it's not like the recipe is wholly mine, anyway. I used one I found online and tweaked it. So, please, let's not get terribly militant about recipe sharing unless you're Dominique Ansel. Let's not fight amongst ourselves. Let's band together in one big force of tribes to drive out the white man(Hostess, Duncan Hines, anyone that keeps you from baking your own delicious cakes at home).

 I'm keeping this short & sweet, much like the cakes, which took a little over 15 lbs of chocolate, 96 eggs, 7.5 lbs of butter, and the biggest lexan containers I could find in order to mix the batter. But don't worry. I'll give you the smaller version so you can just make it at home, for you and a friend or five.

Chocolate Lava Cake
Adapted from Martha Stewart's recipe
I'm getting pretty good at "food selfies"
  • 4 oz vanilla sugar, plus more for greasing tins
    • If you don't have vanilla sugar, just use plain white sugar and add 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 2 oz butter, cubed, plus more for greasing tins
  • 3 lg eggs, room temperature
  • 3 oz flour
  • 8 oz dark chocolate
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt 
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F(Or 200 degrees Celsius for my home-skillets across the pond).

Take ramekins, muffin tins, or little foil disposable cups, and brush/rub room-temperature butter all over the insides. Then add enough sugar to coat, shake things about a bit, and turn it over. It should basically coat the inside of your baking vessel with sugar and butter. Melt together the chocolate and the butter using a bain marie. While that's going, whisk together your sugar, salt, and eggs.

Temper eggs using the melted chocolate and butter mixture, and whisk to combine. Whisk in the flour, just enough to combine it.

Portion the flour into the tins/ramekins using a 4 oz. ice cream scoop/disher, if you please. You can also distribute using a piping bag, or a Ziploc bag with one corner cut out. Wrap these puppies with plastic wrap and pop them in the freezer for at least 30 minutes. You can actually keep these frozen for up to a month, and bake them to order, which is a really good reason to make more than you need, so you can have a warm molten lava cake after a long day and need a pick-me-up at the end of it. Anyway.

Once these guys are ready, pop them into the oven for 8 minutes. Remove, and let sit for a few moments on your stove top, just to let it kind of settle down. Gently-gently-gently loosen the edges using a very thin knife or a small offset spatula, and invert the cake into your hand(lined with a very clean tea towel, if you don't have crazy oven-mit hands like I do). Pop the cake onto a plate, and serve with a creme anglaise & raspberry compote with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, if you're feeling fancy, or just a big-fat dollop of whipped cream if it's just you alone in your apartment in your underwear. I won't judge.

Blood Orange Panna Cotta recipe won't be posted, because I'm a hypocrite

I sold a pretty darn good amount of those puppies, and I ate a good portion of them, too. When correct, it will have that crispy, wonderful exterior with a 'googey(pronounced GOOD-jee) warm center. They're not only simple, but they're a great end to an evening. Or a great beginning to a Downton Abbey marathon. Your choice.

By the way, here was the Valentine's Day menu, in case anyone was curious and wants to snag it for a romantic dinner you plan to cook for your significant other.