Chocolate will prevent dementia, heart disease, and high blood pressure! This dark deliciousness can reduce depression, promote good sleep patterns, and even improve your skin’s appearance! Who doesn’t like to hear that one of their greatest vices is actually good for you?
Most folks, though, are keen to overlook the key word “moderation” when reading catchy reports about the health benefits of the cacao bean. Small doses of chocolate can have health benefits, but I suspect the chocolate consumption I enjoyed as a kid was probably less than healthy since it was so often weighed down by sugar and extra fat.
As an adult, I don’t have much tolerance for sweets, but I do love to bake and share the spoils with others. (Cameron is the resident cookie monster at our apartment. He’s always glad when I break out the decadent baking supplies.) For me, more than a small serving of a chocolate bar makes me dizzy with a sugar rush that inevitably leaves me tired and cranky.
The little chocolate ramekins I baked last week are no exception. The recipe recommends eating them right out of the oven, but we actually preferred these treats after they’ve firmed up in the fridge. If your metabolism is anything like mine, I suggest nursing your ramekin of chocolate over a couple of days.
Chocolate Crack Pots (Adapted from a Food Network recipe)
4 1/2 ounces best-quality bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1. Place the chocolate and butter in the top of a double boiler above simmering water. Whisk every now and again until melted.
2. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, and flour until just blended. Gradually whisk in the melted chocolate mixture. Set aside.
3. Grease 6 (3″) ramekins with butter and add flour to cover the butter, tapping the ramekins to get rid of excess.
4. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F about half an hour before you want to eat the puddings. (If you’re planning to eat them hot from the oven, you want to be sure to cook them during the last ten minutes of your meal, so you can enjoy them at their prettiest.)
5. Pour the mixture into the ramekins and put them on a baking sheet in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, until the tops are firm and cracking slightly and the edges set. Serve immediately and consider providing a pitcher of cold, cold cream for people to pour into their pudding’s hotly deliquescing interior as they eat.