Considering that I’m not a huge fan of chocolate, I can’t believe I’ve just made another chocolate dessert! Actually, what I was really aiming for was something pumpkin-y. It’s fall after all, which means pumpkin season. It’s also Thanksgiving Day, so I felt pumpkin should be on the menu. I wanted to try something new, and for whatever reason, I kept thinking of spiced pumpkin white chocolate ganache oozing out of a molten chocolate lava cake.
I could’ve just made pumpkin lava cake, but I thought it would look better to have a contrasting dark chocolate cake and a lighter pumpkin ganache centre.
The pumpkin flavour and spices really shine through in the ganache! It’s so good I think the ganache would actually go really well drizzled on a loaf cake like Pumpkin Gingerbread. You can also taste a hint of pumpkin and pumpkin spice in the cake. But it’s definitely more chocolaty (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, if you’re a chocolate lover)!
Having to make and allow time for the batter and ganache to firm up in the refrigerator beforehand is actually a great thing, because then when you’re ready for dessert, you just need to fill up the ramekins and pop them in the oven. You can actually prepare both the batter and ganache one or even two days in advance, and keep them covered in the fridge.
This lava cake is delicious, rich and dense! If you want to lighten it up a bit, I suggest having it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, which will help cut through the richness.
Did you make this recipe?
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CHOCOLATE PUMPKIN LAVA CAKE (Serves 4)
2 egg yolks
80 grams sugar
100 grams unsalted butter
100 grams dark chocolate (70%)
50 grams (about 1/4 cup) pure pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
40 grams cake flour, sifted
Pumpkin White Chocolate Ganache:
30 ml heavy cream
15 grams honey
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/16 teaspoon ginger
1/16 teaspoon nutmeg
1/16 teaspoon cloves
60 grams white chocolate
14 grams (1 tablespoon) unsalted butter
30 grams (2 tablespoons) pure pumpkin puree
1. Prepare the cake batter first by whisking the eggs, egg yolks and sugar in a double boiler over simmering water until warm to the touch, then transfer to the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk on high speed for about 5 minutes, until pale, frothy and triple in volume.
2. Meanwhile, in a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water, melt butter and dark chocolate. Stir in pumpkin puree and spices, then remove from heat and set aside to cool (it will be added to the egg mixture, so it needs to cool down just enough so it will not cook the eggs).
3. Pour the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and, using a spatula, gently fold to mix.
4. Add the sifted flour and continue to fold to incorporate into the mixture.
5. Pour batter into a bowl, cover it, and place in the refrigerator for at least a couple of hours, or until it’s firmed up and no longer a runny consistency.
6. To make the ganache, heat the cream, honey and spices over low heat, then add in the white chocolate.
7. When the chocolate has melted, stir in butter until melted.
8. Remove from heat and mix in the pumpkin puree.
9. Allow the ganache to cool, then cover and place in refrigerator until it’s firmed up and less of a runny consistency.
10. Preheat oven to 360 F (182 C). Grease 4 ramekins with melted butter, and coat them with a dusting of cocoa powder.
11. Take the batter and ganache from the refrigerator. Fill ramekin about 1/3 with batter. Scoop out a heaping teaspoon of ganache (use a melon baller or else roll the ganache into a ball with your hands), and place it on top of the batter in the ramekin. Top off with more batter, up to about 1/2″ (1.25 cm) from the rim. Repeat with the other ramekins.
12. Bake for 13 to 15 minutes (the sides should be done, but the centre should still be a little soft when you touch it).
13. Remove from oven, rest for 1 minute, then run a sharp knife around the edge of the ramekin, place a plate over the top, invert and carefully unmold the lava cake (Be careful, the ramekins will be hot!).
14. Serve immediately, with vanilla ice cream, if desired.