Tuesday, August 22

Daily Farm Photo: 8/22/06

Looks Like A Fine Day For A Birthday To Me!

Happy Birthday To My Mom!

Who already emailed me late last night with all the details of her early birthday celebration dinner at a beautiful Northern California inn. The description ended with these words: "Then for dessert one order of Chocolate Lava Cake. We should make it when I come. Google the name and check out the first couple of recipes."

My mother is coming to visit next month. I expect the meal-by-meal request list for all her favorite farm foods to arrive any day. But now it looks as though there will be something new on our menu as well. I have never made (or even tasted) a Chocolate Lava Cake. Does anyone have a favorite recipe for Chocolate Lava Cake they would care to share? No one wants to disappoint their mother.

A year of Daily Photos ago: Happy Birthday To My Mom!


  1. Nothing beats Jean-Georges Vongerichten's molten chocolate cake! Here's the recipe as printed in Food & Wine, with best birthday wishes for your mom:


    * 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter
    * 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, preferably Valrhona
    * 2 eggs
    * 2 egg yolks
    * 1/4 cup sugar
    * Pinch of salt
    * 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour


    1. Preheat the oven to 450�. Butter and lightly flour four 6-ounce ramekins. Tap out the excess flour. Set the ramekins on a baking sheet.
    2. In a double boiler, over simmering water, melt the butter with the chocolate. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with the egg yolks, sugar and salt at high speed until thickened and pale.
    3. Whisk the chocolate until smooth. Quickly fold it into the egg mixture along with the flour. Spoon the batter into the prepared ramekins and bake for 12 minutes, or until the sides of the cakes are firm but the centers are soft. Let the cakes cool in the ramekins for 1 minute, then cover each with an inverted dessert plate. Carefully turn each one over, let stand for 10 seconds and then unmold. Serve immediately.

    MAKE AHEAD The batter can be refrigerated for several hours; bring to room temperature before baking.

  2. Lava cake was seriously one of my favorite treats when I was an omnivore. Good luck on the baking!

  3. Not a clue about the lava cake.

    But happy birthday to Farmgirl's Mom!

    Love the chicken!!

  4. Chocolate lava cake! Suddenly the tuna & avacado I have in front of me doesn't sound as good...

  5. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, FG Susan's Mom!

    I am sending you a white fluffy dog for your birthday gift. His name is Max. You'll love him. If not, give him to Susan.....

    More power to the chickenz! *cluck*

  6. Well, seeing as my newest favorite recipe is one of yours (Savory tomato pie was SO good I had to post photos -- crowd pleasingest!) I am not sure what I'd share. But anything with veggies fresh from the garden and a great bottle of wine followed by chocolate lava cake can't dissapoint.

    Happy Birthday Farmgirl's Mom!

  7. Hooray! Chicken pix to celebrate FG Mom's birthday! Brrrrk-brk-brk-brk-brk-brk!

    My sister has a recipe for Chocolate Lava Cake; I think hers is from Southern Living magazine. I'll ask her to pass it along and e-mail it to you; maybe you can make Vongerichten's version, too, and compare. Oh! How awful to HAVE to eat ALL that awesome chocolatey goodness! Travesty!

  8. Scott's Seafood is one of my favorite upscale restaurants in CA. here's their recipe:

    Chocolate Lava Cake

    Cake Batter:
    1 ¾ lb. Semi sweet chocolate
    1 lb. Sweet butter
    1 tbl. Vanilla
    12 eggs separated
    6 oz. Flour sifted
    ½ tsp. Salt
    ½ tsp. Baking powder
    ½ lb. Sugar

    ½ lb. Semi sweet chocolate
    ¾ cup heavy cream
    ¼ cup butter

    Melt over hot water bath. mix well and pour in a pan so to be 1 inch deep. ( loaf pan maybe). Cool until firm and cut into 10 one inch cubes.

    Cake preparation:
    Melt chocolate over water bath and cool to room temp. add vanilla and egg yolks one at a time and whisk until smooth. Beet egg whites with salt, baking powder, and sugar to soft peaks. Fold flour into chocolate and then fold in egg whites 1/3 at a time. Grease and dust with cocoa 10 ea. 4 oz. Ramekins fill almost to th top and bake at 375 for 10 to 15 min until cake is done pull out of oven and push chocolate cube into top center of cake about half way in. Flip and eat or cool and micro-wave to heat later.

    Happy birthday to your mom!

  9. It will come as no surprise to FarmMom that chickenz are also partial to fancy birthday cakes. A very happy birthday to you, F.M...and, uh, don't forget about the henhouse if you happen to have some crumbs left!

  10. Happy birthday to your mother!

    : *

  11. Today is my mother's birthday too! We should have had a joint celebration.

  12. I wonder if chocolate molten cakes = chocolate lava cakes? But anyway, I hope you and your Mum have a lovely day!

  13. I posted one a while ago over at Just Braise:


    super simple to make and way too decadent.

  14. That Vongerichten's is perfect, simple and fast - it is my beau's favorite and needs nothing more than a dollop of fresh whipped cream on the side.

    If you have extra's, be sure to take them out EARLY - you can nuke them in the ramekin oh so briefly later and have a mostly molten experience. Be sure to butter and flour them pretty well and run a knife along the edge when done for best turnout.

    Mind you, do NOT overcook them! They are serious about that soft center stage. Not that there's anything wrong with a decadently fudgy experience (overcooked lava cake) but when that richness pours out...mmmm...

    I make A LOT of egg white omelets so I always save a couple yolks on the side when I know I'll be making these. Well done, Cathy - great recipe!!!

  15. I used to wrk for a restaurant in Mendocino - Jean George's recipe reigns supreme (I put a drop or two of Mexican vanilla in mine, though). If you really want yumminess overload, top it waith warm caramel sauce....Also you HAVE to butter and flour the ramekins twice, for the to pop out without too much knife around the edges action.

  16. Here's another vote for the Jean-Georges molten chocolate cake recipe. I've been making it for years and guests LOVE it. I've refined the recipe a few ways:

    1) instead of flour, coat the buttered ramekins with cocoa -- it's prettier when you decant them.

    2) as anonymous said, you really mustn't overcook them. I actually bake them at 400 degrees for ten minutes and they're fine, but ovens being the temperamental creatures they are, YMMV.

    3) once they're on the plate and immediately before serving, I dust them with some powdered sugar.

    4) lastly, instead of whipped cream, we serve it with some unsweetened creme fraiche, stirred up to loosen it, in a pretty bowl for people to help themselves.

    note to caitlinvb -- I live in Comptche! What Mendo restaurant did you work in?

  17. I have question. Does anyone know of a recipe using the pampered chef fluted pan....putting in the frosting first then the cake batter and micowaving for only 15 min. I don't know if I remember correctly so havent tried.

    Thank you


December 2015 update: Hi! For some reason I can't figure out, Blogger hasn't been letting me leave comments on my own blog (!) for the last several months, so I've been unable to respond to your comments and questions. My apologies for any inconvenience! You're always welcome to email me: farmgirlfare AT gmail DOT com.

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