I visited the Arthouse Hotel  near Town Hall station quite a while ago and had to try their soft-centered chocolate puddings. One mouthful and I wasn’t very keen to let Nick have a try… ok… so I let him have one… maybe two bits…. Not very generous of me I know… but that’s what happens when you’re going out with a dessert and chocolate lover, if you want to eat a lot of a chocolate dessert – get your own 😛
So… this led me on one of the many missions I take. Searching the internet I found a couple nice recipes, here is one of them (I use the recipe quite often, as the other recipe I have uses egg yolks and I often don’t end up using the egg whites and I don’t like being wasteful).
So here it is, I found it on Nigella Lawson’s website , and it can also be found in her lovely book “How to be a Domestic Goddess”. The one tip I have, is that as all oven’s are different, it’s important to trial this out as you may either get a fully cooked cake or a thin layer of cake with a large amount hot uncooked cake turned into sauce (not that you’d complain – it still tastes great!). It is ideal to probably half cook the cakes, to get a reasonable amount of sauce (just remember that the sauce is uncooked cake mix which would contain uncooked eggs – which are not recommended during pregnancy). It is also very easy to make these up beforehand, which is great for a dinner party! Just mix all the ingredients, pour into the moulds and put them in the fridge before cooking. Take them out and cook for a bit longer than the recommended time (remember to test out the times in your oven beforehand – I will never complain about testing these).
Molten Baby Cakes
50g soft butter, plus more for greasing
350g best dark chocolate
150g caster sugar (heaped ¾ cup)
4 large eggs, beaten with a pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
50g plain or Italian 00 flour (heaped 1/3 cup)
Unless you are making these up in advance, preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6, putting in a baking tray at the same time. Lay 3 buttered pudding moulds or ramekins on a sheet of doubled baking parchment. Draw round them, remove, and then cut out the discs as marked. Press them all into the base of the tins or ramekins.
Melt the chocolate and let it cool slightly. Cream together the butter and sugar, and gradually beat in the eggs and salt, then the vanilla. Now add the flour, and when all is smoothly combined scrape in the cooled chocolate, blending it to a smooth batter.
Divide the batter between the 6 moulds, quickly whip the baking tray out of the oven, arrange the little tins on it and replace in the oven.
Cook for 10-12 minutes (the extra 2 minutes will be needed if the puddings are fridge-cold when you start) and as soon as you take them out of the oven, tip out these luscious babycakes onto small plates or shallow bowls. Serve these with whipped or unwhipped double cream, crème fraiche, crème anglaise or ice cream.