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As I promised in my last post, here is the recipe for the wonderful Salted Caramel Lava Cake I made on the evening of my book club get together. Couple of months ago for my birthday, my children made me a wonderful lunch of Stuffed Gnocchi and Salted Caramel Lava Cake. I’d seen many molten lava cake blog posts, sighed at the beautiful pictures knowing that it was not in my destiny to make these exotic gooey cakes. Firstly, I am not into baking, secondly I avoid recipes with eggs. However I was so inspired by the kiddies effort and their creativity in making a salted caramel version [because I love salted caramel much, much more than chocolate] that I decided to give it a try. But they hadn’t saved the recipe!  

Well, that gave me an excuse to blog surf for lava cake posts. What a wonderful chore it was! I found two chocolate lava cake recipes which I used as a guide to make my Salted Caramel Lava Cakes.

I combined the method I found here [I simplified it further by skipping the step of seperating eggs] on Pioneer Woman’s blog and the recipe ingredients I found on Show me the Curry website. I chose the first for it’s simple dump and stir method and the second for the lesser quantity of ingredients used for 4 cup cakes when comparing other similar recipes. I slipped in bits of caramel squares in the batter and Voila! you have a dreamy,                                 

Salted Caramel Lava Cake.                                 

 

Ingredients

4 oz of semi-sweet baking chocolate squares [113 grams]

4 oz of butter [1 stick or 113 grams]

1/3 cup of sugar or icing sugar 

2  large eggs

1/3 cup A P flour [All purpose white flour]

Some butter for greasing 4, 3 inch diameter, ramekins

6-8 caramel squares

a little rock salt/sea salt

100% cocoa powder for dusting ramekins, optional

Preparation

Preheat oven to 425 deg [218 deg celsius]

Butter the ramekins. Dust with cocoa powder[optional]

Cut each caramel square into a few smaller pieces and press some salt onto them and set aside. If you leave them whole they might not melt all the way through.

Microwave the chocolate squares and butter for one minute in a large bowl. The chocolate will not have completely melted at this point. Whisk till the chocolate and butter combine.

Add the sugar and mix it in.

Whisk in the eggs and incorporate.

Stir in the flour. Work the flour in gently to combine. 

Divide batter among the 4 ramekins.

Gently push the salted caramel bits into the batter covering them.

Place ramekins on a cookie sheet and bake between 10-14 minutes. The cake is ready when it has a domed appearance, the center is a little moist and the edges of the cake, dry and firm.                                                                                                                                                                                                        Remove from the oven, insert a knife and go around the cake, invert onto serving plates, garnish wth salt and serve.                                                                                                 

  • Food Notes
  • This is a very forgiving recipe and you can’t go wrong with this cake. Please do keep this in your repetoire. For very little time and effort you get outstanding results each and every time.
  • You can make the batter ahead of time and refrigerate it. I’ve baked it after 3 three days. Not necessary to get to room temperature, just leave it out for a little while. You can even put it in a prepared ramekin, refrigerate and bake directly after you have set it out for a little bit.
  • You can freeze the batter. Thaw and bake. You can also freeze in prepared ramekins, then thaw and bake, though the cake didn’t rise as much.            
  • You can spike it with liquor.                                                                          
  • If you have left the cake in the oven for a bit too long, it might not have a runny center but the inside will still be moist and fudgy and still yummy.
  • The same recipe bakes equally well in a mini muffin pan. I set the temperature to 350 degrees [180degrees celcius] and baked for 10-12 minutes.                           
  • For a chocolate lava cake, just omit the caramel squares.                  

Thanks for dropping by,

Best, S.

UPDATE; I used ‘Fleur De Sel Caramel’ from Trader Joe’s and I got much better results than Kraft Caramel Squares which I used originally. I didn’t have to cut up the caramels as I did with Kraft and the center was unbelievably gooey.

I am adding a link to  Grace’s blog post on this cake. She is a reader who has shown  step by step photos of the making of this cake. Please drop by her charming blog and see the recipe come alive.

http://graceyounglee.blogspot.com/2012/11/salted-caramel-lava-cake.html

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                                                                                                                                                           This time for our book club get together we read “People of the Book” by Geraldine Brooks. It is a thrilling history mystery, where the author follows clues [an insect wing, a wine stain, a residue of salt crystals among others] to decipher the provenance and chain of ownership of the ‘Sarajevo Haggadah’, a 14th century Jewish manuscript. Such a manuscript does exist and is on display at the National Museum of Bosnia and Herzegovina in Sarajevo. The author weaves fact, fiction, imagination, suspense, book conservation and repair techniques and a slice of European history, in telling the story of the survival of the Haggadah. It is also the story of ordinary people, Muslims and Christians, who sometimes at great peril to themselves went to extraordinary lengths to save the tiny illuminated Jewish book from repeated threats of destruction.
We all loved the book and it was a great evening spent with friends talking about books and family and trading stories from our different cultural experiences.                                                                                                                                     

                                                                                                                                                               It was a fall like evening, so I greeted my friends with hot creamy Tomato Soup. I served Pickled Cucumber and Green Tomato Sandwiches along with Cheese and Corn Puffs. For dessert, I had made Salty Caramel Lava Cakes.

The recipe for the Tomato soup comes from one of the parent volunteers at my children’s school. It was left taped on the crock pot without a name so I am unable to give due credit. You will be amazed at how rich and satisfying this soup is, considering it is so easy to prepare. I don’t know what the baking soda does to the soup as I have made it with and without and couldn’t tell the differance. This soup is also a good template to get creative with and make it your own. The only thing to remember is to use equal amounts of tomato juice and canned tomatoes and add sugar, this is very important to balance the acidity and then add cream or half and half per your taste. You can skip the butter altogether if you wish. Add any spice or herbs you want. I have even grated onions into the soup. I skip the Worcestershire sauce as it has anchovies in it.                                                                                                                           

                                                                                                                                                                 I adapted an  Eggless Cheese Puffs recipe, that I found here to make a very easy snack that even a child can make it. In fact my children did make it and served it to us and waited on us while we chatted!                                                                                       

Eggless Cheese and Corn Puffs

1/2 cup milk [I used 1%]

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup grated cheese [I used Pepper Jack]

1/2 tsp Old Bay seasoning

1/3 cup of frozen corn kernels

2 spring onions, chopped fine

S & P to taste

Mix all the above preferably in the order the ingredients are listed. Spray and flour a mini 12 cup muffin pan. Divide the batter equally and bake in a preheated 425 degree oven for 12-14 minutes. Insert a skewer and if it comes out clean your cheese and corn muffins are done.

I’ll post the Salty Caramel Lava Cake recipe in my next post.

Thanks for dropping by,

Best, S.

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