Halloween Lava Cake with Whipped Peanut Ganache
Updated: Dec 4, 2021
Makes 6 Lava Cakes
Today marks the first day someone decided to actually sponsor me to bake. I think that is a pretty cool milestone if you ask me, considering I never thought my hobby could become anything more than that.
They say (the mystical they) that comparison is the thief of joy. Darn them. Because they're right. I don't like agreeing with elusive all-knowing deity-like humans but they're right. When I first found out someone wanted to sponsor little ol' me and my shoddily-lit iPhone videos, I wasn't all that excited. Let's take a stab in the dimly lit room as to why; I was already comparing myself to people who had multiple sponsored videos, hundreds of thousands of followers, snazzier websites, camera skills, food styling skills - the list persists. I thought - If I'm going to put more energy and effort into this, shouldn't I at least have a few more followers? A camera? A dining table? Yeah, we don't have a dining table yet. I am slowly coming round to the idea, however, that every rung on the ladder climbed is a milestone, no matter how high up someone else is. We're on our own ladders mmkay?
So I bought a bottle of good red wine today, and I am popping it in celebration of this effort. Believe it or not, this dessert took three tries to perfect but I am SO happy I stuck this one out. It's f***ing phenomenal and I didn't have to break the bank to make it. A restaurant-worthy dessert using cheap ingredients is always a serious win.
A quick note: you don't have to make every element of this dish! The lava cake and ganache alone are a stunning dessert. But if you want to go the full hog this Halloween, then you know what you need to do.
Whipped Peanut Ganache
4g Powdered gelatine
24g Cold water
380g Double cream
80g Sweet & salty peanut butter¹
50g White chocolate chips
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract (or 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla paste)
1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
350g Dark chocolate
50g Butter, softened to room temperature
150g Caster/granulated sugar
4 Large eggs
50g Plain Flour
1 teaspoon of vanilla
12 Pretzel twists
150g White chocolate chips, melted
20g Dark chocolate chips, melted
20 pretzel twists
1 tablespoon of cocoa powder
1 tablespoon of icing sugar
Vanilla ice cream
Sweet & salty peanut butter, melted
12 White marshmallows
Add your gelatine to a small bowl and pour the cold water over it. Leave it for 5 minutes to bloom.
Melt your peanut butter and chocolate chips² then mix them together in a large bowl using a spatula.
Meanwhile, heat your cream and vanilla up over a medium-low heat until the cream is hot and steam is rising from it (but not bubbling). Add the gelatine into the cream and stir until fully incorporated.
Pour the cream in three parts over the melted peanut butter and chocolate - fully mixing the cream in before adding the next bit.
Place a piece of clingfilm over the top of the ganache, making sure to touch the clingfilm to the top of the ganache so that it doesn't form a skin. Then put it in the fridge for 4-8 hours.
Preheat your oven to 180 (fan)/200 (bake)
Melt down your dark chocolate chips and leave them to cool
In a large bowl, cream together you butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 2-3 minutes)
Then, beat in your eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl after each one.
Once all of the eggs are fully incorporated stir in the flour until fully mixed in. Then gently fold in your melted chocolate.
Add the vanilla and sea salt and stir them in.
Butter up 6 small ramekins, place a piece of baking paper at the bottom and butter the baking paper. Pour your lava cake mixture into the ramekin and fill it up about 2/3-3/4 full.³
Place in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Turn the cakes out immediately onto separate plates (if the side has stuck to the ramekin gently run a butter knife around the edge to loosen it).
Dip your pretzels in the white chocolate one at a time and make sure they are completely covered in chocolate. Using a fork underneath the bottom of the pretzel lift it up and gently let the excess chocolate drip off. Place the pretzels on to baking paper. Place in the fridge for 5 minutes.
Pipe white chocolate over the top of the pretzels in a horizontal fashion in order to make them look like mummies! If you don't have a piping tip, just fill a sandwich bag with white chocolate, cut on of the corners off and use that as a makeshift piping bag. Leave in the fridge for 3 minutes.
Lastly, pipe two white chocolate dots on the pretzels to look like eyes. Then pipe a tiny dot of chocolate on the white dots to act as the pupils. Leave in the fridge until you're ready to serve.
Crush or blend your pretzel twists. Separate the crushed pretzels in two halves. Add the icing sugar and cocoa powder to one half and mix to combine.
Take your ganache out of the fridge and whip it for 1-3 minutes.
On your plate with the lava cake already on it, pipe or spoon some ganache next to it (not on top, it will melt immediately). Add some crushed pretzels to the plate and add a spoon of vanilla ice cream on top of it. Drizzle over some melted peanut butter. Dust over some of the pretzel, cocoa, icing sugar mixture, then add your mummified pretzels.
Using your hands (it gets messy) spread over the melted marshmallows then DIG IN!!!
I used the American Style Peanut Butter from countdown because it has a bit of sugar and salt added to it so you don't have to add too much white chocolate to get the sweetness.
To melt chocolate I just place it in a microwave-proof bowl, place it in the microwave for 1 minute. Leave it to sit for 1 minute. Then stir it up. Place it in for 20 more seconds at a time and stir vigorously. You should max. only need 3-4 lots of 20 second bursts.
If you only have 2 ramekins that's fine just do it in batches. If you want to make a few bigger ones you'll need to adjust the timings. About 400mls will need 18-20 mins in the oven.