This is a simple way to make a different and decadent chocolate dessert. You'll need ramekins or coffee cups that hold 4 to 6 ounces, plus a turkey baster or large syringe.
Ideally, the pudding centers should still be soft, but that will depend on the size of the ramekins used, the temperature in the freezer and the type of chocolate. Injecting the chocolate with hot coffee just before serving creates a nice contrast in texture and temperature; the black pepper gives the chocolate a kick as well. A large, clean syringe or turkey baster works best for injecting the espresso.
Not much sugar is used here; feel free to add more for a sweeter taste.
- 8 ounces dark (bittersweet) chocolate, such as Valrhona 65 percent, coarsely chopped or shaved
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, preferably at room temperature
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 cup hot espresso
Heat 1 to 2 inches of water in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
Combine the chocolate and butter in a metal bowl just big enough to fit over the saucepan without touching the water. Place the bowl over the saucepan; when the chocolate has softened, stir to incorporate it with the melted butter, then add the milk, cream and pepper to taste, mixing well.
Pour into 4- to 6-ounce ramekins or coffee cups. Place in the freezer, spaced well apart. Check after 45 minutes to see whether the puddings are set. When their edges are firm (which can take from 45 to 90 minutes) but the puddings are still somewhat soft in the middle, they are ready for the next step or can be transferred to the refrigerator to keep cold until just before serving.
When ready to serve, dissolve the sugar in the hot espresso. Fill a (clean) turkey baster or large syringe with the hot liquid and inject it into the middle of each cold chocolate pudding, or make room with a spoon and pour the espresso in. Serve immediately.
From Gastronomer columnist Andreas Viestad.
Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.
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