Food Mimic – Chocolate Molten Cake

This one had a few names, in Geneva, it was called warm Swiss chocolate cake, and in Dubai it was called hot chocolate fondant. I’ve always known it as chocolate lava cake, or chocolate molten cake.

So here are the ones from Geneva and Dubai, respectively:

What you can’t tell from the images alone, is that when you cut open the cake, the centre is all gooey, like chocolate lava. I’m told that one way to consistently get the gooey centre is to freeze some batter and place it in the middle before baking, so that it melts. But I was also told that that method is cheating, and the sign of a good baker is one who can bake it just enough so that the top, bottom and sides are cooked, but the middle remains gooey. So with a challenge like that, of course I had to give it a go. Plus, there was a recipe for it in the Lindt recipe book I picked up. Seemed easy enough, except again, I substituted the butter for the Nuttelex Buttery, and used dairy-free chocolate instead of the mint chocolate suggested in the recipe.

Putting it together seemed to go OK. The chocolate melted fine, no burning. I think the egg mixture become custard-like, and it smelled delicious. I mixed the two. I didn’t really have any ramekins that were thin and deep like the ones they probably used to make the ones we tried, so I thought maybe I could use a muffin pan instead.

Well, that was a huge mistake.

They looked fine after taking them out, but I realised I couldn’t run a knife around the edge to loosen them, because I didn’t want to scratch the muffin tin. So I used a silicon spatula to try and get them out, and the result was a disaster. Gooey mixture everywhere. I should have taken a photo, but I was just so sad. In the end, I had to bake it a little longer, just because it was going to be impossible to get out.

Sadly, there is a bit of gooey goodness in the middle, but what I really ended up with was moist, squashed chocolate cake:

I think next time, I will try the BBC recipe, as it seems much more straightforward, and I can probably substitute out the eggs as well. I’ll also use dark chocolate, instead of milk chocolate, as I want that lovely dark brown colour (it was pretty sweet, so I think even if I use the 85% cocoa stuff, I’ll probably still enjoy it). Lastly, I think I’ll wait until I have something that’s the right shape to bake it in before trying it again. The muffin tins didn’t work out so well (maybe if I had silicon ones that I could turn inside out, it might have helped), and the ramekins I do have are much to big to make single servings with (I use them for mini shepard’s pies).

It still tastes good, but didn’t quite measure up to what we had overseas.

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