Molten Lava Cakes

Molten Lava Cakes

An irresistible fluffy cake filled with oozing chocolatey goodness on the inside

The only difficult part about making molten lava cakes is having a bit of PATIENCE while melting the chocolate & butter! Other than that, this dessert is a decadent treat you can whip up in minutes, guaranteed to impress any chocolate lover! Recipe courtesy of chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate (try sticking to a bar of chocolate, not morsels as it will melt easier and more efficiently than the morsels)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450° and butter ramekins (this recipe fills four 6 oz. ramekins, but if you have a different size accommodate accordingly)
  2. Melt the butter and bittersweet chocolate over low simmer on the stovetop until smooth – you can try the double boiler method, but this is not necessary if you can keep your eye on the chocolate and make sure not to burn!
  3. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, egg yolks, and sugar on high speed until the mixture becomes thick and pale yellow in color
  4. After giving the chocolate one last whisk to smoothen out, add the chocolate and flour, folding into the egg mixture
  5. Pour batter into ramekins and bake for 12 minutes, or until the sides of the cake are firm but the center is soft – TIP: Just keep your eye on the cakes after 8 minutes, everyone’s ovens can be different so best to take out before the center becomes overcooked
  6. Remove ramekins from oven and cool cakes for a few minutes
  7. Carefully flip each ramekin over onto individual serving plates
  8. Serve immediately!

I like to serve mine with a dusting of powdered sugar and drizzle of caramel on top! But ice cream, whipped cream, and berries are all great additions to compliment the ooey gooey goodness of the molten lava cakes.

Shakshuka

Shakshuka

This flavor-filled one skillet egg dish is delicious any time of day!

My love for Shakshuka began when I ordered a version of this dish for brunch at a restaurant in D.C. Poached eggs on a bed of spicy tomato sauce topped with fresh cilantro – does it get any better? I couldn’t remember the name of the entrée I ordered, so naturally I Googled “Italian poached eggs dish”. After doing some research, I found out that this was not an Italian dish but a Middle Eastern/North African staple breakfast called Shakshuka. First of all, love the name. Second, this dish is incredibly easy to whip up & you probably have all of the ingredients already stocked in your pantry. Third, this dish is the “phone eats first” kind if you know what I’m saying – it’s very Instagram worthy.

What you’ll need:

  • 5-6 eggs (or however many fit in your skillet)
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can crushed tomato (28 ounce)
  • 1/2 tsp. Paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. Cumin
  • Dash of Red Pepper (if you want it spicy)
  • Feta Cheese
  • Handful of freshly chopped cilantro & green onion

Instructions

  1. Heat your skillet to medium-high heat and coat the bottom of the pan with olive oil (or your oil of choice)
  2. Add chopped onion and cook until translucent
  3. Add chopped garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes
  4. Add cumin, paprika, and red pepper and cook for 1-2 minutes
  5. Add chopped bell pepper and cook until tender
  6. Pour in can of chopped tomato and cover until the mixture comes to a boil – then lower the heat to a simmer for 10 minutes
  7. Crack eggs into the skillet and cover with lid until egg whites are firmed up, about 5 minutes for runny yolk (cook longer depending on how runny you like the yolk)
  8. Add a handful of feta cheese
  9. Garnish with fresh cilantro and green onion
  10. Serve and enjoy!

Chargrilled Romaine Lettuce

Chargrilled Romaine Lettuce

This grilled romaine lettuce is the perfect addition to any summer cookout! The smoky flavor from the grill takes any romaine-based summer salad up a few notches.

‘Tis the season of summer cookouts! Food this time of year always tastes so delicious hot and fresh off the grill. That’s why I wasn’t opposed to the idea of grilling my romaine lettuce. It seems odd at first to grill lettuce – but romaine just has that perfect thickness and crunch to it that won’t wilt. So, I decided to give it a try. And as it turns out, grilled lettuce is awesome! I like to think of this recipe as a concept, not a formula with a fixed set of ingredients. I say that because once grilled, the options on how you want to serve it and dress it up are endless. You can pretty much add your own spin to the smoky flavor of the lettuce.

What you’ll need:

  • Full heads of Romaine lettuce
  • Olive oil
  • Wedge of lemon
  • Salt + Pepper

Instructions

  1. Cut the lettuce in half, lengthwise
  2. Drizzle olive oil, lemon juice, and season with salt + pepper
  3. Place romaine on preheated grill for 2 minutes (or until charred)
  4. Flip & repeat for other side
  5. Once off the grill, dress up with your favorite summer salad fixins’

I decided to dress mine up with ranch dressing, chopped tomatoes, and parmesan cheese.

I hope if you have yet to try grilled romaine lettuce, that you give it a shot! I’d love to know how you served this tasty lettuce.