Warm Chocolate Pudding Cake with Caramel Creme Anglaise, Day 4: Irene’s Beans

Heading home today from my time in Guatemala- the land of chocolate and coffee. It has been a fantastic time brushing up on my crusty rusty Spanish, exploring a new place, and making new friends. Unfortunately I’ve managed to develop a wicked head cold that is making me foggy minded and a big goofy, so forgive the lack of chit chat, it’s onward to an amazing cake and delicious coffee.

This cake is super moist with a slightly mousse-like texture. It’s delightfully not sweet, which is fantastic since it then calls out for some sort of topping. The caramel Creme Anglaise is perfection. The milk creaminess is so wonderful and the caramel brings out the chocolate. The Creme Anglaise needs to be made in advance and cooled, if you don’t have the time, sweetened whipped cream would not be a hardship nor ice cream.

The coffee pairing for this is the French Roast. OK, one little bit of a chat. Amongst my close friends it is well known that I am really not so much a coffee drinker, but an espresso drinker. In fact so much so that I am teased mercilessly for it- mostly as a result of one rough morning in a New Orleans Supermarket when I was asked which coffee I would like for the apartment we were sharing with friends. No coffee, only espresso. La-di-dah! (Sorry Mary!) What can I say? A girl knows what she likes.

This cake is at it’s best warm, but seriously, cold is quite wonderful too.

Warm Chocolate Pudding Cake with Caramel Creme Anglaise
serves 8
5oz bittersweet chocolate
6T unsalted butter
1T olive oil
3T sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
4T all purpose flour
1/8t baking powder (eye it)
large pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 350˚ and boil a large pot of simmering water. Grease and line a 6″ baking pan. You will also need a larger baking/roasting pan to set the cake pan into.
Over a double boiler, melt the chocolate and butter together. Stir in the sugar and salt. Allow to cool until warm to the touch then thoroughly stir in the eggs and oil.
In a small bowl combine the flour and baking powder. Gently stir into the chocolate mixture.
Pour batter into the prepared pan, then set pan into the roasting pan. Add enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the cake pan.
Place the whole magilla into the center of the oven and bake for 30-35mins. Trend toward under baking rather than over baking.
Remove from oven and remove cake from water bath. Allow to cool for a few mins then remove from the pan and allow to cool another 5mins before serving.
Caramel Creme Anglaise
makes 1.5c
1c whole milk or cream
2t vanilla
4 egg yolks
4T sugar
2T water
In a heavy saucepan combine the water and sugar and place over medium high heat. Watching closely, boil the sugar until it caramelizes. Remove from the heat one shade lighter than you would like as it continues to deepen quickly at this point.
Pour in the milk or cream. It will steam and create a cold hard sugar lump on the bottom of the pan. Just ignore all that, but be careful about the steam.
Stir in the yolks and vanilla and gently warm again over a medium low heat. The sugar will dissolve into the sauce and it will slowly thicken.
Warm until the sauce is a thick heavy cream. It should coat the spoon. Be gentle with this, overheating will cause it to break.
Once the sauce has reached the desired consistency remove from the heat immediately and strain through a sieve into a bowl.
Cool completely.