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Red Velvet Molten Lava Cakes Recipe
Can we say Happy Accident, mon amis? Some things are destined, and in this case the Food Fairies guided my hand.
I wanted a molten lava cake based on the red velvet so beloved in my Southern homeland - but it just wasn't working out like I wanted. I couldn't really capture the light cocoa flavor and slightly rough texture of the real red velvet, while maintaining the gooey lovely inside.
I had finally had the idea that I was convinced was going to work, and I was happily melting white chocolate at my stove. I reached for the red food coloring to impart that screaming scarlet that must be there, when I realized I had instead put in about a tablespoon of orange extract.
After a few choice words that were not taught in my deportment classes, I realized that since I was that far through I might as well proceed to see if the structure of the dish was what I was after. And a miracle occurred!
Not only were the little cakes heavenly - perfect texture, that red velvet flavor, and a gooey middle - but the orange was actually a phenomenal accent. Think of an elevated orange Tootsie Roll - but far more elegant and subtle. You can certainly leave it out, but I'm taking this little gift with gratitude, and will use it from now on...
- 6 oz white baking chocolate
- 6 Tbl butter
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 Tbl orange extract
- 2 teaspoons red food coloring
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1 pinch salt - I use table salt for this, only a touch, for the finer grain
- 1 Tbl butter - for the ramekins
- Preheat oven to 400F. Butter liberally the inside of four small ramekins - 3/4 cup size or so.
- In a double boiler or microwave, melt together the white chocolate and butter, whisking well to make sure they melt completely. Remove from heat. Whisk in the sugar and cocoa powder.
- In a small mixing bowl beat the eggs. Add a little of the chocolate mixture to the eggs, whisking well. Repeat a couple more times. This 'tempers' the eggs - bringing them up to the temperature of the chocolate without scrambling them.
- Mix the remainder of the chocolate into the eggs. Add orange extract and flour, whisking to combine completely.
- Divide the mixture evenly into the four ramekins. Bake at 400F for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and immediately run a knife around the outer edge of each ramekin to help release the cakes. Invert immediately onto serving plates. If you like, put a little bit of whipped cream down first, and invert the cakes on top. The cream will melt with the heat of the cakes and be gorgeous.
- Allow the ramekins to sit for about two minutes. Carefully lift the ramekins straight up and away from the cakes. Voila!