baking beast

a suspicious creature has been lurking around the streets, leaving behind delights that dreams are made of. what's to become of this baking beast?

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Souffle Cake in the Pink

So I haven't posted in quite some time.. again!! And I never did reply to that food tag event.. sorry!! I've been busy and not really in the mood for blogging much. But I wanted to participate in the In the Pink event hosted by la dolce vita for breast cancer awareness. This is a usual molten chocolate cake kind of dessert, and although they are called fallen chocolate cake, mine didn't fall much. But they were delicious anyway... and I accompanied them with a cheating strawberry sauce. I melted some vanilla gelato from Trader Joe's and mixed it with strawberry puree. The dessert was very tasty, although I thought the recipe was going to turn out something more of a dense, chocolate cake instead of the molten in the middle, airy on the outside, kind of cake when served warm. But it was still delicious! I tried it this morning when it was all cool and it is more of the texture I was looking for... So maybe when reheated it'll keep that denser texture and be even better. Experimentation will follow. In any case, this dessert was definitely pink! (I baked them in mini brioche tins for a more exciting shape) Thanks for hosting this event, Emily... It was a lot of fun to participate in (And I am glad I actually found out about this event in time to participate in it!! Hopefully I'll be able to do the same for the next SHF) and I can't wait to see all the other pink desserts that are promoting breast cancer awareness.

Individual Fallen Chocolate Cakes

You can substitute 5 ounces of unsweetened baking chocolate for the semisweet if need be, but you'll also have to increase the sugar by 6 tablespoons, for a total of 7/8 cup. To melt the chocolate and butter in a microwave oven, heat chocolate alone at 50% power for 2 minutes; stir chocolate, add butter, and continue heating at 50% for another 2 minutes, stopping to stir after 1 minute. If chocolate is not yet entirely melted, heat an additional 30 seconds at 50% power.

Serves 8

8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), plus extra for ramekins
8 ounces semisweet chocolate coarsely chopped
4 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon table salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour plus extra for ramekins

1. Adjust oven rack to center position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Generously butter and flour (or use cocoa powder) eight 6-ounce ramekins or Pyrex custard/baking cups; tap out excess flour and position ramekins on shallow roasting pan, jelly roll pan, or baking sheet. Meanwhile, melt 8 tablespoons butter and chocolate in medium heatproof bowl set over a pan of almost simmering water, stirring once or twice, until smooth; remove from heat. (Or melt chocolate and butter in microwave oven. See instructions above.)

2. Beat eggs, yolk, vanilla, salt, and sugar at highest speed in bowl of a standing mixer fitted with whisk attachment until volume nearly triples, color is very light, and mixture drops from beaters in a smooth, thick stream, about 5 minutes. (Alternatively, beat for 10 minutes using a hand-held electric mixer and large mixing bowl.) Scrape egg mixture over melted chocolate and butter; sprinkle flour over egg mixture. Gently fold egg and flour into chocolate until mixture is uniformly colored. Ladle or pour batter into prepared ramekins. (Can be covered lightly with plastic wrap and refrigerated up to eight hours. Return to room temperature for 30 minutes before baking.)

3. Bake until cakes have puffed about 1/2-inch above rims of ramekins, have a thin crust on top, and jiggle slightly at center when ramekins are shaken very gently, 12 to 13 minutes. Run a paring knife around inside edges of ramekins to loosen cakes and invert onto serving plates; cool for 1 minute and lift off ramekins. Sieve light sprinkling of confectioners' sugar or cocoa powder over cakes to decorate, if desired, and serve immediately with optional whipped cream.