In honor of my cycle 1 release, I’m posting a recipe from Dishing Up Romance, Book One in my Romancing the Chef's Toque series, to further whet your appetite. This is the sequel to Cupid’s Web, as you can see from the title of the recipe, Mama Pirelli's still plugging away to get Cassie married. And as always, she misinterprets something Cassie said. Bon Appetit!
MAMA’S DREAMIN’ TINY TOES AND BABY CAKES
MOLTEN LAVA CAKES
10 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
½ stick unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch chunks-extra
for greasing the ramekins
1 tablespoon coffee-flavored liqueur
2 large whole eggs
2 egg yolks
5 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or whole vanilla bean,
split and scraped
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon instant coffee powder, finely ground
Whipped cream for topping, pre-made
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Cut the chocolate block in half and chop into uniform pieces. Break the remaining 5 ounces into 1-inch squares and set aside for later. Using a pastry brush, grease the inside of four ramekins with melted butter.
Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler or use a microwave safe bowl at 50 percent power, estimating 1 minute per ounce as a guide. Check at 2-minute intervals to avoid burning. Once the chocolate is melted, stir in the pieces of butter and using a wire whisk, blend until smooth. Add the liqueur and thoroughly incorporate. Set aside.
But don’t set the romance aside. You keep that heat on. Knowing Cassie wants to set up a nursery means she doesn’t dislike children—it means she’s open to the idea of having them herself—someday. Who cares if she claims she’s setting it up for her customers—we see right through that, don’t we?
For right now, though, we know subtly has never been one of your attributes, but before you take a bow with the collaborative efforts, don’t rush to the reception hall just yet. Secretly make the call and schedule something, but don’t announce it until later. These two kids need to make up and make out first. We know you’ve been waiting a long time, but your patience is imperative right now. One wrong move and it could push Cassie in the opposite direction, especially if she thinks this is what you want. You know how she is. Whatever you want, she wants just the opposite. Although we must admit, she’s giddy when she’s around him—all positive signs. Now, that being said, if things come to a standstill, forget what I said about slowing down—all bets are off and it’s full speed ahead, Lucy.
Yeah, we’re just as anxious as you to hear those tiny feet running down the hallway. It will happen. Of this we’re sure. And don’t forget, once they’re married, you have carte blanche to nudge all you want. She’ll just roll her eyes, but if you can get the husband on your side, and we know you can, she’ll have more than you hounding her.
Place the eggs, yolks, sugar, vanilla and instant coffee powder in a bowl and beat with an electric mixer on high speed until the batter is thickened. Sift the flour over the mixture and blend. Now, add in the chocolate mixture and fold until mixed thoroughly and fill each ramekin within a ½ inch from the top.
Bake at 400 degrees for approximately 15-minutes until puffed. Cool cakes for 5-minutes before plating, bottom side up and watch that chocolate center ooze out onto the plate.
Serve warm with whipped cream. Ahh, this cake is enough to reel in the future son-in-law and seal the deal. Isn’t this the best? The icing on the cake! You go, Mama! We’ve got your back on this one! Makes 4 servings.