Warm, molten centers.
A touch of fresh orange.
All in my mouth.
I knew that the end of 2012 deserved a recipe that screamed "WOW!" After all, it's been a huge year. There was a presidential election. The 2012 Olympics were hosted fabulously by London.Curiosity landed on Mars! Whitney Houston and Steve Jobs, among others, passed away. Egypt voted on their constitution. And we somehow managed to survive the end of the Mayan calendar (because, you know, us sane people totally knew that the end of a calendar signifies the end of all existence... Not).
On a more personal note, I finished all my finals. I got closer to my friends. My cat passed away, but his sister Sophie hung on and is doing so well. I had a lot of firsts: first time traveling to Canada, first time going to Glacier National Park, first college acceptance letters (yeah!!), first time watching Star Trek and Galaxy Quest (yes, yes, I know, I'm slow on the trends) and trying Spaghetti Squash (um, delicious!). First time realizing just how ridiculously alike I am to my dad-- the fact that we both explain the chemical compositions of food to each other is just too funny.
So these intensely chocolatey, gooey souffle cakes seemed like a perfect way to celebrate the end of the year. With the snow creating a blanket of white outside my window, the warm and fluffy centers of these cakes were absolutely fitting. I would describe these as a delicious mix between a molten chocolate lava cake and a chocolate souffle-- light, fluffy, warm, and so rich. A touch of orange creates a brightness and depth of flavor that enhances the dark sweetness of the chocolate, while a touch of honey and brown sugar add just a hint of floral, sticky sweetness. Topped with fresh orange zest and a sprinkle of cocoa, these cakes are a showstopper-- and one that will leave your taste buds singing.
Warm Chocolate-Orange Souffle Cakes
Adapted from MayoClinic
Serves 3 Serving Size: 1 (6oz) ramekin Calories/Serving: 134
- 5tbl unsweetened cocoa powder, divided
- 3tbl hot water
- 1tbl light margarine
- 1tsp olive oil
- 1tbl all purpose flour
- 1tbl white whole wheat flour (can use all purpose if wanted)
- 1/4tsp cinnamon
- 1/8tsp espresso powder
- 2tsp finely grated orange zest, plus more for garnish
- 1tbl packed brown sugar
- 1tbl honey
- 1/8tsp salt
- 1/3c. light vanilla soy
- 2 large egg whites (about 1/3c.), room temperature
- 1/8tsp cream of tartar
- 1/4c. splenda
- Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly coat 3 (6oz) oven-safe ramekins with cooking spray.
- In a medium bowl, combine 1/4c. cocoa powder and 3tbl hot water. Stir until well-combined-- the mixture will be very thick, do not worry. Set aside.
- Heat a small saucepan over medium heat. Melt margarine, and then mix in oil. Add flour and cinnamon, and cook over medium for 1 minute, stirring with a whisk. Add the espresso, orange zest, brown sugar, honey, and salt to the saucepan, whisking to combine. Slowly add in the milk, continuing to whisk constantly. Whisk until mixture has thickened, about 2 minutes, and then remove from heat and add into the bowl that has the cocoa-water. Mix well, and then set aside to cool for at least 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine splenda and remaining 1tbl cocoa powder. Combine egg whites and cream of tartar in a medium, clean bowl. Beat whites until foamy, and then slowly add in the splenda-cocoa mixture (about 2tsp at a time) while continuing to beat on high speed, until stiff peaks form.
- Fold one third of the egg white mixture into the cooked cocoa mixture in order to lighten it up a bit. Then fold in the remaining egg whites, making sure fold until there are no uneven streaks left. Be very gentle.
- Pour/scoop the chocolate cake mixture into the ramekins, and cook for 15-20 minutes, or until they have risen and are set in the center (give them a gentle wiggle-- the center shouldn't shift). Cool for a maximum of 5 minutes-- these are best served warm and therefore should be. Top with zest if desired.