Flourless. Chocolate. Cake. Those are the only three words you need to prepare you for the deliciousness that is to follow. But then you add the word "Lava" and everything is elevated to a whole other level. I mean really, chocolate running like lava? Yes! Flourless Chocolate Lava Cake is to die for!
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I've been making these cakes for more than 20 years and I still crave them! They are a dessert like Creme Brulee, vanilla ice cream, or pound cake ... never goes out of style and is always a welcome end to a delicious meal.
The chocolate is important!
If you are going to make a chocolate lava cake, you simply must choose the best quality chocolate you can find. Low-quality chocolate with tons of fillers and waxes just won't do it justice. I look for an organic, fair-trade chocolate that is at least 72% dark and Theo Chocolate that is made right here in Seattle is a great choice. This is no place for milk chocolate.
Chop the chocolate or break it into smaller pieces and cut the butter into smaller pieces. This just helps it melt more quickly and evenly.
If you have a double boiler (bain marie, in French), this is the perfect time to use it! I love my vintage copper one with the ceramic insert, but a bowl set over a pot of simmering water works just as well. Stir it often and be sure to keep the water only at a simmer.
While the chocolate is melting, whip the eggs with the sugar and salt until the mixture is lightened. It will take about five minutes.
While the eggs are mixing, you can prepare the baking dishes. Rub them with butter, then coat them with cocoa powder. Once the eggs are whipped with the sugar, pour the melted chocolate and butter into the egg mixture slowly while the mixer is running. Then fill each ramekin about three quarters full with the batter.
Bake them for about 10 minutes. They should still be jiggly in the middle ... that's where the "lava" is! Let them cool about three minutes, then dive in!
How to serve Flourless Chocolate Lava Cakes
I love to add some fresh whipped cream or a small dollop of ice cream and some berries! You can serve the cakes in the baking dish or you can turn it out onto a dessert plate. Be aware that if you turn it out onto a plate, it might run before you cut into it!
Other desserts you might like:
Flourless Chocolate Lava Cakes
- 8 ounces 72+% bittersweet chocolate chopped, or broken into smaller pieces for melting
- 6 ounces butter (12 Tablespoons) cut into cubes
- 4 large eggs
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- butter and cocoa powder for preparing the baking dishes
- Adjust oven rack to the middle of the oven. Preheat oven to 375°F. Butter six 4-6 ounce ramekins, then coat them with cocoa powder.
- Using a bowl set over pan of simmering water, (or a dedicated double-boiler), melt chocolate with butter, stirring occasionally, until melted and smooth. Remove from heat.
- While chocolate is melting, whip eggs, sugar, and salt using mixer fitted with whip attachment on medium-high speed until mixture is lightened, about 5 minutes.
- Reduce speed to low and mix in chocolate mixture until combined. Spoon into cups and place on baking sheet. Bake until edges are set but center is still jiggly, about 10 minutes. If you are using 6-ounce ramekins, you might have to bake them a bit longer. Avoid over-baking, though, because you want that oozy center. Let cool 3 minutes and serve.
- Serve plain, or with ice cream or whipped cream. Fresh berries are delicious with it, too!