Chef Jonathan’s Part:
This is a very delicious chocolatey dessert that I’m sure you’ve all had in a restaurant at some point in your lives. The good thing is that it’s very easy. There’s basically two key concepts to have while going through this recipe. The first, is to have a good Mise en Place. I’ve mentioned this before, but for those of you who aren’t foodies, this is a fancy way of saying “putting your ingredients in an order of operation”. In other words: place all your ingredients in either dishes or on trays in the order you will use them. This is very important in this recipe, because things can move very fast, and you don’t want your eggs curdling. That brings me to the second concept: egg incorporation. This is something people fear, but once your eggs curdle once, you never let it happen again! The key is to let your warm mixture cool enough (in this case: the chocolate mixture), then incorporate the eggs slowly, making sure that you whisk constantly. Then, returning the pot to the burner on low heat, keep whisking until the eggs have tempered. Once you mastered these two concepts, the rest will fall into place! My only criticism with this recipe is the cooking time. I found that my Lava Cakes were not as runny as I would have liked them, but they were still delicious. I also made a Creme Chantilly to present my cakes, and it just adds a nice sweetness. Enjoy!
Karen’s part……. I first heard about Molten Lava Cakes in 2001. I made them immediately and have been in love with them ever since. When Jonathan mentioned them for this week’s blog, I was thrilled! I also need to add the i love Paula Deen and this is her recipe! How could they fail?
I couldn’t find bittersweet chocolate so I substituted with unsweetened and added a 1/4 C of powdered sugar to the recipe. I also omitted the orange liqueur. I also added one more ounce of semisweet to make it sweeter.
Because i was having company I made the recipe early in the afternoon and decided to put it in the fridge until i was ready to bake them following our meal. I figured I’d have to add a few minutes to the bake time because they would be cold. Suprise! The mixture hardened as they sat in the cold fridge! 😦 (I felt like a “newbie cook”.) To make it useable, again, I put it in a double broiler to soften it up. It didn’t work because the chocolate was coagulated and the butter separated. I voiced my concern to my gracious company and they figured it would still taste good. Well, it did but there was no “lava”. One of the comments was, “I didn’t know it was supposed to be liquid in the middle so it doesn’t matter.” What a kind dinner guest! The conclusion was that they still tasted good even though they didn’t “ooze with chocolate delight”.
What did i learn from this experience? 1. don’t be so organized when it comes to chocolate recipes. 2. chocolate and butter harden when put in the fridge. (DUH!) 3. I CAN make a cooking mistake. 4. I will only invite dinner guests who love me and don’t really care what the dessert looks like!
This recipe IS easy and even the newest of cooks would have success with it. I WILL make it, again but will NOT refrigerate it, this time.
Here’s the recipe. I, of course, have no pictures of my dessert. Enjoy!
“Molten Lava Cakes Recipe : Paula Deen : Food Network.” Food Network – Easy Recipes, Healthy Eating Ideas and Chef Recipe Videos. Web. 24 Sept. 2011. <http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/molten-lava-cakes-recipe/index.html>.