So this post is a few days late, but I wanted to share my Valentine’s Day dessert. Every year for Valentine’s Day I make chocolate lava cake for my husband. This year was going to be no exception. However, during a recent Netflix binge of Great British Baking Show, we saw contestants make lava cakes with a peanut butter center. Upon seeing this my husband insisted that I “never really loved him”, as I had “only made chocolate.” Naturally, I needed to give the peanut butter center a go.
I had expected the recipe to be similar to how I normally make lava cakes with the addition of peanut butter. Much to my surprise, this was not the case. Here’s how I made it.
1 stick plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, plus melted butter for brushing
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
6 ounces dark chocolate (70 percent cacao), chopped
3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Splash of Vanilla
3 large eggs, at room temperature
Pinch of salt
How I Made It
Preheat the oven to 425°. Brush four 6-ounce ramekins with melted butter. In a small bowl, whisk the cocoa powder with 1 tablespoon of the flour; dust the ramekins with the cocoa mixture, tapping out the excess. Transfer the ramekins to a sturdy baking sheet.
In a medium saucepan, melt 1 stick of butter with the chocolate over very low heat, stirring occasionally. Let cool slightly.
In a bowl, blend the peanut butter with the 1 tablespoon of confectioners’ sugar and the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter.
In a bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the granulated sugar with the eggs and salt at medium-high speed until thick and pale yellow, 3 minutes. While mixing, add the splash of vanilla.
Using a rubber spatula, fold in the melted chocolate until no streaks remain. Fold in the 1/4 cup of flour. Don’t over mix at this stage.
Spoon two-thirds of the batter into the prepared ramekins, then spoon the peanut butter mixture on top. Cover with the remaining chocolate batter.
Tip: At this point, you can put the lava cakes in the fridge for a few hours. I found this extremely helpful as I made dessert before dinner, but with a lava cake you need to serve it as soon as it comes out of the oven. Just make sure that you take the lava cakes out of the fridge about 30 minutes before they go into the oven. They need to be close to room temperature when they become exposed to heat.
Bake in the center of the oven for 16 minutes, until the tops are cracked but the centers are still slightly jiggly. Transfer the ramekins to a rack and let cool for 5 to 8 minutes.
Run the tip of a small knife around each cake to loosen. Invert a small plate over each cake and, using pot holders, invert again. Carefully lift off the ramekins. Dust the warm cakes with confectioners’ sugar and serve immediately.
The first time I made lava cakes, I remember being rather intimidated. If you follow the steps, I promise it’s not that bad. If you’re a fan of chocolate and peanut butter, give these a shot. I promise you will enjoy them.