As I alluded to two weeks ago, I went on a cruise last week for spring break. (The biscotti traveled beautifully, by the way. Eating it kept me awake since I drove the whole way myself.)
The cruise itself consisted of an amusing combination of college students seeking to stay drunk for the duration of the trip, families trying to entertain rowdy children, and retirees attempting to make dents in their hefty retirement savings.
I fancied myself an observer, although I cannot deny my obvious association with the former group. I remember everything about our trip, though, which is more than I can say for most of the spring breakers.
I also had the opportunity to serve as a food tester and reviewer for the benefit of my vegan friend. I identified questionable ingredients to ensure that she maintained her vegan purity, and I generously described foods that she couldn’t actually consume.
Cruise food, in case you’re wondering, will lead to hypertension when consumed in large quantities. There was so much salt I began wondering if the chefs rinsed everything in sea water. Also, nearly all of the baked goods came from boxed mixes, which my tastebuds can detect almost instantly.
One of the best desserts on the cruise was a molten cake. Unfortunately, I made my own right before the trip, so I knew what potential a cake can possess when it is made individually, left under-baked and topped with vanilla ice cream. The cruise version paled in comparison.
I made these with my friend who has a wheat allergy (my friends have quite a diverse set of palates and dietary needs), but these cakes don’t have to be gluten-free. Still trying to work out how to make them vegan, though…
Recipe from here. Yum.
Gluten-Free (or not) Individual Chocolate Lava Cakes:
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
5 ounces dark chocolate (70% cocoa)
Large pinch of sea salt
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon flour (or gluten-free flour–we used Bisquick gluten-free baking mix)
1) Preheat the oven to 450. Melt the chocolate and butter together in a double broiler (I create my own double broiler by putting a metal bowl over a boiling pot of water, making sure that the hot water doesn’t actually touch the base of the bowl) or melt everything in the microwave. Add sea salt.
2) Meanwhile, beat together the egg, egg yolks, and sugar with a whisk or an electric beater until light and slightly foamy.
3) Add the egg mixture to the warm chocolate; whisk quickly to combine. Add flour and stir just to combine. The batter will be quite thick.
4) Butter small ramekins and divide the batter evenly among the ramekins.
5) Bake for about 7 minutes if you want a little cake and a lot of lava. Bake for longer if you want the opposite.
6) To serve, place a plate on top of the ramekin and flip. Then place another plate on what is actually the bottom of the cake and flip again. Melt a little more chocolate to drizzle on top, or add hot fudge sauce. Serve with ice cream.
Hi. As for making it vegan – not that I am, but my husband is allergic to dairy products. You can get a dairy-free unsalted margarine at most supermarkets, Fleischmann’s brand. But the salted has dairy – go figure. I guess you could use egg substitute to make it vegan. Dark chocolate is pure chocolate, so no problem there. Looks yum.
Thanks! I always forget how many substitutes are available these days.
Yes, thank you for your “generous” descriptions…really though, I did appreciate you being my food guide 😀
Also, I plan to try this recipe:
Hey, don’t knock those retirees putting a dent in the money that otherwise MAY go to their children. We earned it and we’ll spend it! I say this because Bob and I are going on a cruise to Bermuda in May so want to justify what we’re about to do. Glad you had a good time on your cruise, hope to see you soon for lunch…..love ya!
No knocking intended! Shoot, I wish I could retire now, myself.
Your food photography looks especially great in this post!
YUM YUM YUMMY!!! 😀 These look amazing!! 😀
Your post makes me regret giving up sweets for Lent…..
delicious! i should not read your blog when i am absolutely starving!
Hi Meghan. Debbie Moose, my colleague on the AFJ Board, introduced me to your sight. Fascinating topics; lively conversational tone; solid recipes; and fabulous photos…I love it all!
Thanks so much, Maureen! I appreciate your kind words.
wonderful post, I almost peed myself when I saw this – LOVE that it’s gluten-free (as you can guess I’m sure). I’m going to make it in the next week or so – I’ll let you know how it goes!!!
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I am definately making these , they look delicious !!!! 😀 But i just want to know the diameter of the tin they fit in, it would really help if someone could tell me. Thanks !! XD
Im not a big fan of dark chocolate , so would they taste good with milk chocolate instead ? Thanks ! 🙂
Im not a big fan of dark chocolate so would this recipe still work if i use milk chocolate ? Thanks !! 😀