Monday 14 September 2009

Melting Middle Chocolate Fondants

These puddings are the ultimate chocoholics chocolate pudding indulgence. A just baked, moist dark chocolate sponge that releases a hot, oozing, intense chocolate sauce centre when cut. A cloud of hot melted chocolate aroma hangs in the air, faintly mingled with the scent of toasted hazelnuts thanks to the addition of some hazelnut liqueur. It’s enough to make anyone swoon.

These are very indulgent puddings and would be perfect for an elegant dinner party or a special occasion. The gooey middle receiving cries of delight as it is released. In my case, there were some leftover egg yolks sitting in the fridge – good enough reason for me!
I have tried making these puddings before and have had trouble releasing them from their moulds without them collapsing or piercing the side of the sponge and so loosing some of the gooey centre. However, I think I have solved the problem by coating the inside of each mould with a little cocoa powder, which seemed to help release the fondants from the moulds very easily. I was so happy I went dancing round the kitchen. They don’t contain much flour, and although I haven’t tried it, I suspect this could easily be replaced with ground almonds to make the puddings gluten free.

Melting Middle Chocolate Fondants
(Recipe adapted from Delia Smith)
200g dark chocolate 70% cocoa
200g butter
4 whole eggs
4 egg yolks
110g caster sugar
60g plain flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp Frangelico (hazelnut liqueur)
20g extra butter and 4 tsp cocoa powder for dusting

Break the chocolate into small pieces and cut the butter into cubes. Place them in a glass bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water and leave to melt gradually. Do not let the water touch the base of the bowl. Once fully melted remove from the heat, stir in the Frangelico and set aside to cool slightly.
Meanwhile, melt the extra butter and use to generously grease the insides of 8 mini pudding/dariole moulds. Add ½ teaspoon of cocoa powder into each buttered mould and use your finger to spread it around the inside (it will form a thin paste). This will help it release cleanly from the mould once baked.
In a clean bowl, whisk the eggs, egg yolks, sugar and vanilla together until the mixture has turned pale, thick and tripled in volume. It should leave a ribbon trail on the surface for a few seconds when the beaters are lifted out of the mix. This may take 5-8 minutes.
Pour the melted chocolate mixture around the outside edge of the whisked egg mixture. Use a large flexible spatula or metal spoon to gently fold the chocolate into the egg mix. Turn the bowl as you fold to try and keep as much air in the mix as possible.
Sift the flour over the surface of the mix and fold in as before until no flour streaks remain.
Divide the mix evenly between the pudding moulds, filling almost to the very top.
Place the puddings on a baking tray, cover with cling film and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, but preferably 4 or more hours until required.
When ready to eat, preheat the oven to 200C or 180C fan. Place the pudding in the oven for 12 minutes only. They should rise a little out of their moulds a bit like mini soufflés and the tops should look flat and cooked.
Remove the puddings from the oven and leave to stand for 1 minute. Then use a small round bladed knife to release the puddings from the top edge of the mould, but there should be no need to run the knife all the way down inside.
Wear rubber gloves to give you a good drip and turn out the puddings onto a plate.
Serve and eat immediately. Take a spoonful and watch the delicious melting chocolate centre ooze out. Serve with cream if desired.
Makes/serves 8

Note: The puddings can also be frozen in their un-baked stage. When required, they should be baked for 14 minutes from frozen.

On another note, today is the start of National Cupcake Week here in the UK. Run from 14th – 19th September, National Cupcake Week is a fantastic week long extravaganza being organised by British Baker to celebrate the joys of cupcakes. Local shops and bakeries have been encouraged to participate in some way and everyone is encouraged to eat, buy or bake at least one cupcake this week. Sounds like a good idea to me!


Nora said...

Wow! They look so delicious. Mmmm, melty gooey chocolate.

My Peace Of Food said...

Oooh, I am obsessed with these little cakes. I save every recipe I see for them, trying desperately to duplicate the first one I ever ate, in Santa Monica, CA. I'll have to try this one! Do they ooze rather quickly, or slow and pudding-like?

Johanna GGG said...

wow these look amazing - I have a few similar recipes I have been wanting to try but they just seem so decadent and wintery that I think they will have to wait til next winter's desserts - love watching yours ooze out

and happy cupcake week - what a great excuse to bake and eat them!

Rachel said...

"scent of toasted hazelnuts" that got me wanting to make some for me immediately.

Katie said...

Hi The Gourmet On A Diet,
Yes they are delicious and these puddings ooze slowely and pudding like. Its quick a thick sauce as you can see in the last pic :)

Sam said...

I love the chocolate/hazlenut combination, these look and sound fantastic!

tracieMoo said...

they look fantastic! *Drools*

Michele said...

Wow!! These look just amazing!

The Caked Crusader said...

Yummy looking pud - it's all about the ooze!

Nic said...

I love these! But I want to say well done on your photos because these are really hard to snap, I know as mine were rubbish. (Will have to try again after seeing yours!)

James said...

These look absolutely perfect. Can just imagine that warm chocolate middle!

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

Bravo to you! Chocolate fondant is one of those things that I've never been able to do, It always endds up under or overcooked :( Yours looks beautiful and I love the oozing shots!

Karine said...

Wow! I am chocoaddict and I would love one of these fondants!

Anonymous said...

this looks TOO divine!!!

Pity said...

sooo chocolatey, a dream for a chocaholic like me! delicious!



Jelli said...

This dessert is my most-ordered menu item at fancy restaurants. I've made them at home and they were incredible, and much less expensive (though still a bit pricey). Thanks for another good recipe!