First up, I must mention that I’m not a big fan off cooking in a microwave. Sure its excellent to reheat and defrost stuff, but to cook in, its a no for me. Baking even a bigger a no.
(Apart from my life-changing 30 second ‘poached’ eggs – that is).
However, having said this, I had seen on Masterchef Australia (season 3) that a NYC pastry chef used a microwave to ‘bake’ up a few cakes that he then used in a very elaborate looking dessert. Then, I had also been shown a similar technique by a top local chef who makes a green tea sponge in a paper cup, in a microwave, so I knew I needed to have an open mind here. When a foodie friend of mine was telling me about this recipe he discovered, and how easy and awesome it was, I immediately had to give it a try.
The source recipe includes salted caramel toffees in the pudding – which I also tried – but I preferred the taste and texture of the ready made caramel. You can choose what you prefer.
On the caramel front, If I had my delectable salted caramel on hand I would have used this, but you can turn ready made caramel treat into salted caramel by simply stirring in a pinch of sea salt flakes. I found two teaspoons of caramel better than one. Furthermore, you can also add a light scattering of salt over the finished pudding.
The optimal time to cook this was 45 seconds each, and for the best results, it is better to cook them separately. I tried doing them together, but found one cooked more than the other.
Oh, and I found very lightly whipped cream essential to serve with this pudding. Vanilla ice cream would also be delicious, adding another textural element.
- 4T self raising flour
- 4T brown sugar
- 3T cocoa powder
- 1/4t salt
- 1 egg, beaten
- 3T milk
- 1T sunflower oil
- 1/2t vanilla extract
- 1/2 - 1t good quality instant coffee granules
- 2 - 4t ready made caramel like caramel treat, or dulce de leche with a pinch of salt
- fresh cream or ice-cream to serve (optional)
- Dissolve the coffee granules in the milk, and then add all the ingredients except the caramel and pinch of salt, and mix them together in a bowl by hand until well combined.
- Divide the mixture evenly between 2 small bowls, teacups, or ramekins.
- Drop 1 - 2 teaspoons of caramel into the middle of each pudding - it will settle down towards the bottom of each.
- Microwave each individually on full power for 45 seconds. At this stage the pudding will be firm but still a bit gooey in the middle. If it is too under cooked or too gooey (all microwaves are different), simply microwave for a few more seconds until you are happy with the degree of firmness.
I was pretty blown away at how quick, easy and delicious these hot chocolate puddings are. Perfect for a winter indulgence, and easy enough for kids to make.
*PS – thank you Laurence for finding this recipe, convincing me it was awesome, helping me improve it, and generally being a great foodie buddy.
I look forward to connecting with you again in the future.
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