Hello wonderful people!
This week I needed something quick and easy to whip up amidst the copious amount of work that
still needs to be done before the semester comes to an end, but also something rich and decadent to celebrate getting my research grant for the summer. (Hooray!) Also I desperately needed to recover from the mildly traumatic experience that was 4 whole hours of debugging my comp sci homework. (Less hooray!)
Naturally, since I haven’t properly had anything chocolate-y in over a month, that meant gooey, delicious chocolate fondant, aka molten chocolate lava cake, served with plenty of ice cream and fresh berry puree. Bonus points for incorporating tea, aka the beverage of champions (and almost-twenty-year-olds who are basically little old ladies at heart).
The trick to attaining optimal molteny perfection is not overcooking your fondant. As I learned from my not-quite-so-gooey final product, this means removing the cakes from the ramekins immediately after they come out of the oven because any residual heat will continue cooking the batter. This also means that the rest of your plate should be set up and ready to serve whenever the fondants come out of the oven, so plan accordingly – as with my pie apples, I suggest pre-scooping the ice cream into nice, round spheres as the oven preheats, then sticking the scoops back into the freezer to firm up a bit before serving to streamline the process and to appease the neurotic need for perfect scoops (:
In any case, whether your final consistency ends up closer to gooey, melty interior or brownie-cake hybrid exterior, you will have yourself something that is rich, creamy, and 110% delicious! Hope you enjoy!
Makes 2 servings
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, plus extra for greasing the ramekins
2 oz bittersweet chocolate chips
40 g powdered sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
1 large egg yolk, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
35 g all purpose flour
Strawberry puree, strained to remove seeds
Matcha ice cream (or vanilla!)
- Preheat the oven to 400 ºF. Grease two 6 oz ramekins with a generous layer of butter.
- In a microwave, melt the butter, then stir in chocolate chips until the chocolate is fully melted and the mixture is smooth.
- Using a fork, stir in the powdered sugar, then the egg and egg yolk, then the vanilla extract, stirring until fully combined and the mixture is smooth.
Tip: The batter will the thick and kind of goopy after the eggs are mixed in. Don’t worry- this is totally normal.
- Using a spatula, fold the flour into the chocolate batter just until combined.
- Transfer half of the batter into each ramekin, then bake for 9-10 minutes, or just until the cake is set and the top surface of the cake is dry.
- Using a large dinner spoon, place one generous spoonful of strawberry puree near the edge of the plate, with the length of the spoon lining up between the center and the edge.
Tip: If you are left handed, deposit the puree on the right side of the plate at the 3 o’clock position; if you are right handed, deposit the puree at 9 o’clock. As you deposit, tilt the spoon away from you, tipping the spoon away from you lightly as you pick it up to create a nice rounded shape on the edge that is closer to from you.
- In a single, smooth motion, smear the strawberry puree in an arc along the edge of the plate until you have traced across 1/3 of the plate to create a tapered smear.
Tip: Start with a very light touch, and lightly increase pressure as you smear away from yourself to create a design that tapers as you reach the other side of the plate. Smear in an arc that initially moves toward the 12 o’clock position, then almost to the opposite side of the plate (about 10 o’clock if you are left handed, about 2 o’clock if you are right handed).
- Place a minimal amount of strawberry puree in the spoon. Holding the spoon perpendicular to the surface of the plate, dot 3 drops of puree to continue the arc along the edge of the plate.
Tip: I just dipped the spoon into the bowl of puree. This picks up plenty for dotting.
- Dust a small amount of cocoa powder in the remaining gap on the edge of the plate between the 3 dots and the wider end of the smear.
- Transfer a chocolate fondant onto the plate, overlapping slightly with the wider end of the smear, then dust lightly with powdered sugar.
- Add a scoop of ice cream to the center of the plate and serve immediately! Enjoy!