Chocolate lava cakes

Oh, are these ever delicious.
Chocolate lava cakes — also known as molten chocolate cakes — are rich individual chocolate cakes with oozing molten centers. The original chocolate lava cakes recipe was created by master chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten fortuitously, when he pulled a chocolate cake out of the oven before it was done and discovered the center to be wonderfully warm and pudding-like. Surprisingly, they’re easy enough for even the novice baker to make at home. What’s more, they can be prepared ahead of time, stored in the fridge and then baked at the last minute. Quite possibly the sexiest item on the dessert menu, the now-classic chocolate lava cakes are all about decadence. These indulgent flavor bombs come in single servings, but even one little cake may contain more than 600 calories and a day’s worth of saturated fat.
Oh well, they are worth it!

INGREDIENTSChocolate lava cakes
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

DIRECTIONS
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. 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.

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 chocolate lava cakes immediately.

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