Saturday, June 28, 2008

Mommy Cakes

Ever want to curl up on the couch with a sinfully delicious, molten center chocolate cake at the end of a long day?

We relax with this delicious little dish at least once a week. This is our family’s favorite chocolate dessert and it comes from Cooking Light Magazine. We call them Mommy cakes. Before finding this recipe, I searched for a molten center cake recipe for years. They all seemed way complicated- including this one, at first glance. After breaking it down, I found it was easy, affordable, and hits the spot like nothing else I’ve ever made.

The recipe is below, but here’s a breakdown of what you need:

You probably already have these staples on hand: sugar, milk, butter, flour, salt, vanilla extract, eggs, cooking spray.

Add these items to your list of staples and you’ll be ready to make these cakes anytime the craving hits: Unsweetened Cocoa, Unsweetened chocolate squares, semisweet chocolate chips. I use Hershey’s cocoa, Semi-sweet Baker’s chocolate squares, and Publix generic brand chocolate chips.

You will also need four 2-ounce ramekins. As an alternative, you can use a regular-sized muffin pan.

½ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
¼ cup 2% reduced-fat milk (I use fat free milk)
2 T plus 2 tsp. unsweetened cocoa

1 ½ T butter
½ ounce unsweetened chocolate, chopped

(almost) ½ cup flour
Splash vanilla extract (1/2 tsp)
Shake of salt (1/8 tsp)
1 egg white

4 easy handfuls semisweet chocolate chips
A few sprinkles of sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Slice butter a bit and set aside with your chopped chocolate.
3. Combine sugar, milk, cocoa in small saucepan on medium heat, stirring well with whisk. Cook until sugar dissolves, stirring constantly (a couple of minutes). Remove from heat and immediately stir in butter and chocolate from step #2.
4. Cool mixture 10 minutes. Use this time to lightly coat ramekins w/ cooking spray. Sprinkle a bit of sugar in each ramekin, shaking and turning to coat. Place ramekins on a cookie sheet for baking.
5. After the 10 minute cool down, add flour, vanilla, salt and egg white to chocolate mixture, stirring with a whisk just until blended.
6. Spoon 2 T chocolate mixture in each ramekin. Top each ramekin with a handful of chocolate chips. Divide remaining chocolate mixture evenly among ramekins, spreading to cover the chocolate chips.
7. Bake at 350 for 18 minutes (I bake at 14 minutes in my convection oven).
8. Serve warm.
9. Refrigerate any remaining cakes. You can pop them in the microwave for 20 minutes the next night for another molten center treat!

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