Welcome back to the 2018 cake series, where we are making a new cake every month to master a number of different styles and techniques! If you missed out on the January cake, don’t worry you can still make it! Just head over to the post for lots of tips on making a delicious angel food cake! This month is all about chocolate and decadence, so we’re doing a molten chocolate cake using the recipe from the creator of this style of cake himself, Jean-Georges Vongerichten. This delicious cake can easily be made any night of the week, because it’s quick and easy!
Let’s get started. This recipe does not require much prep work, just preheating the oven and buttering the ramekins. If you don’t have ramekins, try using a small round casserole dish or a cupcake pan. Just keep an eye on the cake because the cook time is slightly different with different pans. I also recommend collecting all of your ingredients and tools before you start so you’re not running around in the kitchen when you should be keeping an eye on your melting chocolate or whisking eggs.
So once you’ve got your ramekins ready and the oven preheated, you need to melt the chocolate. The recipe calls for a double boiler, which is the ideal way to melt chocolate. However, if you don’t have one you can’t melt the butter and chocolate in a bowl in the microwave for about 1 ½ to 2 minutes total. Make sure to stop the microwave and stir the butter and chocolate so you don’t overheat them.
Next you beat the eggs, sugar, and salt together. This will take 2 or 3 minutes on high. Don’t rush this step because the egg volume will help the lava cakes rise. You won’t have as much volume as you do with whipped egg whites, but the eggs will get frothy, thick, and lighter in color.
Once your eggs are ready, fold in the melted chocolate until it is fully incorporated. It will take a minute to get the chocolate mixed in, but it’s important that the batter be fully mixed together. Once you’ve got that done, just divide the batter evenly between your ramekins and pop them in the oven for 12 minutes.
Be careful when you flip the ramekins onto plates- it’s not hard to do but you don’t want to burn yourself. If the cakes don’t fall onto the plates themselves, run a knife gently around the edge of each ramekin to loosen the cake. Add some ice cream or whipped cream for a truly decadent treat, and voila! You have a decadent, chocolatey dessert ready for a special night. Or a Tuesday.
Now let’s get to the most important part: wine pairings. I was actually a little surprised with the wine- the cakes are surprisingly versatile (largely because they’re very low in sugar) and went well with several red wines. My two favorites were petite sirah and burgundy. In both of these wines, the chocolate helped draw out the fruit flavors and made them more prominent than in the wine by itself.
Did you try this recipe? Send me your photos of how it turned out!