They say that there are actually only two food groups: the one that you put cheese on and the one that you put chocolate on. It's difficult to argue with that. You can, however, argue about the more important food group of the two... and I am #teamchocolate all the way.
Molten Dark Chocolate Cakes Header image
Molten Dark Chocolate Cakes Header image
| Credit: Caitlin Bensel; Styling: Rishon Hanners

This Valentine's Day, my love letter goes out to a dessert. But not just any dessert...a baked good that adequately encompasses my need (yes, need) and deep, dark love for all things chocolate. Molten cakes, A.K.A. lava cakes.

Ah, lava cakes. They’re so much more than what meets the eye. You can dip fruit in chocolate, you can add chocolate chips to cookies, or drizzle fudge syrup over ice cream. But fill an intensely rich chocolate cake with a dreamy, gooey, molten chocolate center—and you’re on to something. Go on. See for yourself.

Molten Dark Chocolate Cakes
Credit: Caitlin Bensel; Styling: Rishon Hanners

Maybe I am biased. I just don't comprehend phrases like “I don’t like chocolate” or “that’s too rich." These sentiments don't register in my brain. I grew up with a mother who felt that a real dessert isn't full of fruit or fruit flavor. A real dessert shouldn't be reminiscent of anything I'd find on a salad bar.

And when I say that a good molten lava cake recipe is a gold mine, I really, truly mean it. A recipe of this caliber is basically the roadmap to a chocolate-lover’s heart. And frankly, we’re pretty freaking awesome.

The secret to the deliciousness of these Molten Dark Chocolate Lava Cakes? Heavy cream and espresso powder. Heavy cream is 36-40% fat, adding moisture to the cake’s crumb. And deplying espresso powder is a lovely trick for enhancing the deep chocolatey flavor of a cake. And these cakes are dark chocolate, becuase the sugary milked-down chocolate flavors just won't cut it here. Any true chocolate fiend will tell you, milk chocolate is for posers.

No matter your relationship status, I encourage you to share this Valentine's Day with a perfectly decadent, moist, chocolatey cake with a heart of chocolate gold. This recipe makes 6 cakes, so share a couple with a friend. Because the only thing better than a good friend is a great friend that comes bearing chocolate.