Sunday, November 8, 2009

Baby Chocolate Oblivions

Baby Chocolate Oblivions were this week's choice for the Heavenly Bakers. Richly decadent, they are comprised of four ingredients; sugar, butter, eggs and chocolate. The fact these beauties were coddled in a water bath struck fear in me.

Rose suggested using a silicone muffin pan. It took a bit of sleuthing, but I managed to find one at Sur La Table, an amazing store chockablock full of culinary bounty. Seeing Rose's cheerful face among the vast selection was a huge relief.

It was quite fun melting the chocolate, butter and sugar together, reminding me of Ghirardelli's chocolate making display in their San Francisco ice cream parlor. I was a bit unsure about warming the whisked eggs over simmering water and fortunately they did not curdle. What a feast for the eyes to see the same eggs magically billow into a cloud while whisking in the stand mixer. They folded into the waiting chocolate and I popped them in the oven. So far so good.

Not really. I pulled the cakes out after only five minutes, having mistakenly read the instructions. Back in they went, ruined or not. They cooled and slipped out of the silicone pan with a warm cloth melting the Oblivions just enough to cause their release. It was so much fun I let my eldest granddaughter pop out the rest. The most difficult part was waiting four hours to try one. They were quite good inspite of my blunder.

Wanting to know what the milk chocolate version tasted like, I mixed up another batch, this time baking them correctly. I did as Rose directed, replacing 6 0z of dark chocolate with milk, combining Valrhona dark with Schargen Berger milk. We were all too impatient to wait for the cool down and dove into one still quite warm, covered in whipped cream and raspberries. It was absolutely delicious, sort of like a souffle brownie. The milk chocolate cut the intensity of the dark chocolate just enough to subtly lighten the richness.

Four of us tried the little Oblivions and the unanimous concensus is we prefered the milk chocolate version warmed! I snuggly wrapped the remaining cache in plastic wrap and relegated them off to the freezer. My thinking is, cut or sliced in fourths, put in colorful foil mini cups and dollaped with peppermint flavored whipping cream, they will be a nice holiday tidbit.

I have to say I am learning so much baking through Rose's recipes with everyone. My daughter aptly commented that I was being taken out of my "comfort zone" to which I replied, "Are you kidding? I'm being nailed against a wall." And I'm really loving it.

Rose smiling at the top of the box.

Valrohna and Scharffen Berger dark and milk chocolate.


  1. Hi Vicki. I could die a very happy person in a Sur La Table store! I've been eyeing that pop over pan online for a while. Would you mind measuring how much water will fit into one of the indentations? I'd really appreciate it.

    Great job!


  2. Good on you for taking yourself way out of your comfort zone! It sounds like your whole family is benefiting from your adventures. Isn't it nice to know that even when we blunder a bit the recipe still comes out great?

  3. One cup exactly. And yes, Sur La Table is Ali Baba's cave!

  4. Vicki - love the comment "being nailed against the wall." And isn't it nice to have a bake-a-long community beside you? :)

  5. Your little cakes look beautiful, Vicki! You are very adventurous to try the milk chocolate version, just to test it out.
    I think you've caught the baking bug good and proper now.
    Soon you will have 11 different kinds of flour and when someone asks you 'why?', you will pounce on this question as an opportunity to inform them all about the very different flour properties.
    But, atlas, their eyes will glaze over and you will then understand, that some people are the lovers of baking and eating the cakes and some people are just the eaters of cake.

  6. You are moving forward Vicki..even trying the milk chocolate version!

  7. beautiful babies!

    good job and great step-by-step.


  8. Nice post and a true heavenly baker making two variations!! Love Sur La Table but we don't have one in my area I have to wait until I go out of town to visit one :o(