Tag Archives: molten chocolate cake

Molten Chocolate Cakes… baked in a toaster oven

30 Jun

I always try to bake for my co-worker’s birthdays.  I think too often we get caught up so much with work that we don’t remember that we have lives on the outside of the office.  Birthdays are a damn good excuse to have something to celebrate and bring a little joy to the office.  I also love any excuse to bake.  When my coworker mentioned how much she LOVES molten chocolate cakes, I knew what I was making for her birthday.  I also absolutely love molten cakes myself, and I remembered Lori had blogged about making some recently.  So Lori gave me the recipe from the NY Times that sounded easy enough.

I was a bit worried, however, as I knew I was going to have to prepare these in advance and then cook them in the office… in a toaster oven.  So I decided to make a single cake at home first to see how it went.  The batter tasted DELISH and I got it all set up to go in the oven…

And then when the alarm went off, I cheerfully turned it over and…

Wah wah.  Bummer!  Since moving in I have realized that my very large, very modern oven needs longer cooking times than recipes usually call for (maybe because it’s bigger?) and I should have kept it in for longer than the recipe.

So I gathered it all up and dumped it back in and put it back in the oven…

and prayed… and…

Wah Wah x2!  Damn.  It tasted good though!

So I figured I had nothing to lose and I bought some ice cream, whipped cream, and berries and figured that if it didn’t work I would make a trifle or put it in a bowl to eat.  So with frayed nerves and a small prayer… into the work toaster oven it went the next day…


Yayyy! It actually worked!  I actually think they got a little over cooked and weren’t as molten as I would have liked, but at least they came out in little chocolate deliciousities.  What is especially curious is that the ones in the muffin tins worked, yet the last one in the ramekin still didn’t come out right (so I ate it myself out of the container).  Perhaps I need to grease the ramekins more next time.

It’s rare that I fail baking, and this was quite the blow to my floured ego, however, it just goes to show you that making mistakes in baking happens often.  Don’t let it get you down

Charles Restaurant- ::EDIT::

21 Oct

When Mike and I went to Taste The West Village a few weeks ago, I entered into a raffle where you bid on a gift certificate to certain restaurants (it went to charity for the schools). After tasting the awesome braised short ribs at the Charles (234 West 4th Street on the corner of West 10th Street) stand, I decided it was totally worth it to bid $60 for a $75 gift certificate.  I really didn’t expect to win but it was my lucky day.

It said on the reservation email itself that photos were not allowed in the restaurant. Bummer!  I snuck some on my iPhone, however, until the light couldn’t hold out any longer. (Sorry for some of the blur)

We started the meal with some delicious flat bread and olive goo (aka tapenade).

For an app, we decided on potato gnocchi with squash, spinach, and pecorino romano. It was great.  The gnocchi was at a perfect consistency and flavor and the squash, cheese, and spinach gave it such a great, earthy flavor.  

We decided on the brussel sprouts as a side dish and they were okay, but nothing like the now infamous ones Mike and I make with pancetta (inspired by both Babbo and Guy Fieri).

I was tempted to go with the short ribs again, but when Mike said he was also leaning in that direction it opened me up to try something different. So I went with the Braised Lamb Shank which came with Israeli couscous.  It was a really marvelous dish. Great flavor to the lamb and the couscous was delicious.  I savored every bite.

The short ribs were just as good, if not better, than at the tasting.  I still think the celery root puree is too soft for the soft texture of the meat, however, it was definitely tasty.

For dessert, Mike made a good call and said the molten chocolate type cake sounded right up my alley.  WOW was it!  Perfect.

Mike went with the homemade ice cream sandwiches.  See that little bowl of warm liquid? I’m pretty sure that was nutella.  I wanted to put my entire face into that little bowl.

Overall our meal was very good.  That lamb was absolutely worth going back for.

Total Nom Points: 7.5 out of 10

Funny… the same day this posted, Charles was in GrubStreet: http://newyork.grubstreet.com/2009/10/charles_names_jason_zukas_as_t.html