It came to my notice today that it has been almost a month since I posted last. In the time that I have been away from the blog, the country, from work and from my life as I know it, so much has happened.
We have stepped into 2013.
Our 3rd wedding anniversary came and passed us by.
My brother is now a “Master” of Sports Administration, for the commemoration of which AK & I traveled to Europe with my parents.
My reader is bursting at the seams with Christmas and New Year posts!
FDD stats for 2012 have been delivered to my inbox.
Like I said last year, I’m not a great one for New Year celebrations and resolutions and I never want to make a big deal out of it. But I will let on that a few things are going to be different (and better) for both – the blog as well as for me personally – and soon. I’m still working on a whole lot of details and plans and lists so I will update as soon as I can. I’m looking forward to a better, healthier, happier and much more productive year… So here’s wishing everyone a Happy New Year and a big thank you for reading and believing in FDD.
Back to the pudding story – since AK & I had a hectic 2+ weeks of travel, we wanted a quiet New Year and Anniversary celebration. And after consuming an obscene amount of red meat, cheese, potatoes and chocolate (not to mention beer and Vin Chaud/ Hot Mulled Wine) I definitely didn’t want to bake a whole cake and consume all that again!
So Martha Stewart came to the rescue with her Molten Mocha Cake, conveniently developed to serve 2! Aside from the convenient serving portion, the fact that it was so easy and quick sold it to me!
Here’s what I used:
2 tbsp butter, plus more to grease the ramekins
1/3 cup powdered sugar, plus more for dusting the ramekins
60 gms semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
1 egg yolk
1 tsp instant coffee powder
3 tbsp flour
Here’s how I made them:
From the recipe, I realised that it must be baked just before eating but other steps could be prepped in advance. So since I wanted to dig in at mid-night on the eve of the Anniversary, I put everything together a few hours in advance, leaving only the baking to the very end! If you have no such intention, turn on the oven to pre-heat at 200 C before all the other steps!
Martha recommends using 180 ml ramekins and mine were JUST about that capacity and very shallow (like individual flan ramekins). I brushed them with a generous dab of butter and dusted with sugar (just like I would dust flour for a cake tin).
Putting these aside, I placed the chocolate and butter in a microwave proof bowl and proceeded to heat on high in 30 sec intervals, stirring between each round. It took about 1.5 minutes total to melt and combine them evenly. Setting this to cool slightly, I whisked the egg, the yolk, the sugar and coffee powder in another bowl till combined and frothy.
Then I poured the slightly cooled chocolate & butter into the egg mixture, stirring to prevent the eggs from setting. The mixture thickened considerably.
Lastly, I added the flour, mixed only to combine and poured the mix into the prepared ramekins. It should not be over-mixed at this point.
When I was ready to bake them,I pre-heated the oven for about 20-25 mins. By this time the mixture seemed to have set, like a cold pudding and I was so tempted to dig in! It took every ounce of self control to prevent that!
The recipe said to bake the cake for abut 10-12 mins, until a toothpick inserted 1/2 inch from the edge came out clean but the same toothpick inserted in the centre emerged with a little chocolate goo! At 10 minutes, I had no such luck and not at 15 either. I finally pulled mine out about 18 minutes after popping them in. (I only realised that I had miscalculated the F to C conversion and heated my oven to 150 C much after the fact! So 10-12 minutes at 200 C should work for most ovens!)
Also, the ramekins I used were JUST about the right capacity so the cake rose a little (even without baking powder/ soda) and popped a few millimetres over the top. But no harm done at all. Bear in mind that if you use deeper ramekins with the same capacity, the time may need to be increased a little.
Anyhow, I allowed them to cool in the ramekins on a wire rack for about 10 minutes. Unlike the suggestion in the recipe, I didn’t upturn them but made a heart pattern on top using powdered sugar, a sieve and a paper heart stencil!
To add to the fun, our cousins came over to surprise us at mid-night with another cake (so much for lowering the sugar consumption), party confetti and blaring whistles! Thanks to them, we had some pictures to show for the night! And of course, another night full of wine, sugar, conversation, friendship and love…