My every intention was to write this post for Valentine's Day - all smooshy and nauseatingly sappified. I'd met a fella, see? It was early days, but he was thoughtful and kind, with an easy smile and chocolate brown eyes. There was the slow-release of skeletons tip-toeing out of the closet (you don't get to be dating dudes in my age group without some sort of
After the red flags were furiously fluttering and declarations of maybe we'll still be friends, I retreated back to Clan Singleton, for those are my people. My life was full and rich beyond belief before this person stepped briefly into it, and there's no reason why I should be left feeling lonely or sad after his departure. People come and go from our lives for a reason - I truly believe that. Lesson learned; move the hell on. Being bitter only tastes good when it's mixed with the sweetness of chocolate.
But you didn't come here to read about the dating woes of yours truly. You want to know more about these lava cakes, and why they don't look so lava-y. Let me tell you about my first time out in lava-cake-land: the batter is pure joy of butter, chocolate, eggs, sugar and just a smidge of flour.
Baking takes anywhere from 6-8 minutes...
If I'd taken them out earlier, there would have been way more of an ooze factor happening.
But I held back, thinking that they just didn't look quite done. Like a lot of things this week, I was totally guessing the outcome. But you know what? I totally didn't miss the ooze so much. The cake was still incredibly molten in the middle - like melting-on-contact-with-your-tongue molten. It's good stuff. The pistachios add a lovely crunch in contrasting texture fun and the sprinkle of coarse sea salt only enhances the flavour bomb of bittersweet chocolate goodness. These lava babies only take a few minutes to prepare, and just over 5 to bake. They'll be kept in my repertoire, that is an absolute certainty; saved for someone who is most worthy.
In the end I did not share these lava cakes with the fella. Nor did I eat them alone. A friendly face, with a matching
Molten Lava Cakes with Pistachios and Sea Salt
1/2 cup butter, unsalted, cut into cubes
6 oz (180grams) bittersweet chocolate, cut into pieces (use at lease 70% cocoa)
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup natural cane sugar, or granulated white
1 tbsp all purpose flour
handful of pistachios, roughly chopped
coarse sea salt for sprinkling
Preheat oven to 450*F
Butter and flour 4 ramekins and set aside (mine are the 1 cup, 250ml size).
Boil water in a medium size pot. Place a glass bowl over it, reduce heat so water is just simmering. Add butter and chocolate to glass bowl and stir frequently until all is melted. In another bowl, whisk the eggs and egg yolks and sugar until light. Once the chocolate is melted, remove from heat and fold in the egg mixture slowly, then beat in the flour quickly until just combined. Pour the batter into your prepared ramekins and bake for 6-8 minutes. 6 will get you soft, 8 will get you a firmer centre. When done, remove from oven, and let stand for 5 minutes. Invert onto plate and sprinkle with pistachios and salt. Serve warm. Serves 4. Adapted from The Year in Food, via The New York Times
*May make batter ahead and divide into ramekins ahead of time. Just be sure to leave them at room temp for 30 minutes before baking.*