Chocolate says “I LOVE YOU” so much better than words, so the best way to spoil your love this Valentine’s Day , is with a delectable chocolate surprise. Chocolate is a complex material which apparently possesses various compounds which act on the brain, producing a sense of delight , not unlike the feeling of love. This idea really appeals to me, from now onwards I can banish all feelings of guilt when I eat chocolate, instead I can blame my brain for resorting to thoughts of love.
With all this talk of chocolate and love it would be remiss of me not to share my favourite lava cake recipe for Valentines day . Everyone has their own favourite chocolate lava cake but seriously, I love how this one is so easy and yet gourmet at the same time. It is my “go to” dessert which never fails to impress. (Although by the time I took these pictures the cakes were cold so the chocolate lava was not running as well as it would when they were hot. My photoshoot was interrupted by a call from my son to say my beautiful new grandbaby had just been born, and obviously I had more important things to think of . Plus I was heading out the next morning to California to see him, so no time for more baking).
But seriously who can resist chocolate at the end of a meal, and by my standards these are just the perfect size with the perfect amount of chocolate.
I have a method which I use, preparing most of it before my guests arrive and then putting it together while they are digesting their main course. You wont even be missed at the table its so quick, and when it comes out of the oven hot and liquid, no one can believe you have just made it.
METHOD – First stage
- Measure out all your ingredients first
- Over a small double boiler melt the butter and dark chocolate and set aside.
- Mix together the icing sugar and flour and set aside.
- Whisk the eggs in a separate bowl and set aside.
- Grease your silicone cup cake moulds so they are ready.
While you are serving the main course switch your oven on, so that its nice and hot and after the main course you can quickly finish the dessert.
METHOD – Second stage
- Reheat the chocolate mixture slightly if it has gone a bit solid
- Fold in the eggs into the icing sugar and flour mix
- Add the chocolate mixture and stir well
- Pour into your prepared moulds and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 7 minutes. Timing needs to be spot on for the lava cakes to flow when you cut into them. They should be solid enough on the outside so that you can turn them out, but runny on the inside.
- Ease the cakes from the silicone moulds and turn upside down on individual plates.
- Dust with icing sugar and serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
- Add a few berries for colour if you prefer.
This recipe makes 12 but if you are making for two, divide the ingredients by 5 and it will make just 3 little ones. One each is perfect and one to share – what better way to end a Valentines Dinner.
Sending you all my love for a special Valentine’s Day.
- 180g butter
- 300 g good quality dark chocolate
- 125g icing sugar, sifted, plus extra for dusting
- 80g cake flour, sifted
- 5 large eggs, lightly beaten
- Preheat the oven to 200ºC / 392ºF.
- Melt the butter and chocolate in a small pot( i like to use a double boiler) and stir to combine well.
- Mix the icing sugar and flour in a mixing bowl and fold in the eggs.
- Add the chocolate mixture and stir well.
- Pour the batter into 12 greased silicone cup cake moulds or 8 ramekins.
- Fill to ¾ and bake for 7 minutes.
- If using the silicone cup cake moulds, turn out on individual plates.
- If using ramekins leave in the ramekin.
- Dust with icing sugar and serve immediately with ice cream or cream.
- The cooking time is crucial in order to achieve the liquid centres.