Originally posted 29/05/2013
Last Christmas I somehow ended up with three boxes of Lindor chocolates – one of each of the white, milk and cookies & cream varieties to be precise. Now, I am most certainly NOT complaining as they are divine but, amidst all the other gazillions of truffles, mints, posh biscuits and other choccy treats myself and my family acquired between us during the festive season (there’s still several boxes in the cupboard even now at the end of May, no joke) I thought I’d try and put some of them to use in my baking. Or rather, I thought I’d use the milk and white chocolate ones in my baking; the cookies & cream ones are such amazingly heavenly little balls of sweet, creamy loveliness that I have them stashed away in an undisclosed location for me to savour as they are too good even to share! Sorry. Not sorry. Anyway, one thing I found is that Lindor balls actually melt surprisingly well, even the white ones (provided you chop them up) so this uber decadent recipe really is sinfully easy.
Obviously if you don’t want to splash out and use Lindor chocolates, these cakes would work fine with most other kinds, but I found them an unashamedly indulgent and sophisticated change to the bog-standard cooking chocolate taste, and you really can’t beat Lindor for creaminess so they work fantastically in the gooey melty surprise centres.
I took a batch of these into work on my birthday back in January and they seemed to vanish in a puff of smoke – you can’t go wrong with chocolate and cheesecake afterall, even when there are avid new year dieters about…
INGREDIENTS – makes approx. 10-12
For the cakes:
- 115g/4 oz self-raising flour
- 115g/4 oz caster/granulated sugar
- 115g/4 oz margarine/butter
- 2 eggs
- 55g/2 oz cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp instant coffee, diluted in 2 tbsp hot water*
- 0.5 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
For the melty filling/icing:
- 5 (approx.) milk Lindor chocolates
- 5 (approx.) white Lindor chocolates
- 115g/4 oz cream cheese (at room temperature, full-fat works best)
For the cakes & filling:
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C (or 160 fan) and line a baking tray with 12 paper cake cases, and boil the kettle.
- Whisk the margarine/butter together in a large mixing bowl until pale then whisk in the eggs.
- Fold in the flour, baking powder and vanilla extract until a batter of a soft dropping consistency has formed.
- Drop the mixture into half of the paper cases using a teaspoon until they’re each about half full.
- Roughly chop two of the white Lindors into thirds using a sharp knife (and being careful not to ping them off the worktop…) and place a third on top of the mixture in each filled case, then top up each case with cake batter until they’re about three quarters full.
- Stir the diluted coffee into the remaining cake batter. Then make a cup of tea with the leftover boiled water (well, it’d be wrong to put the kettle on and not have a cuppa, wouldn’t it?!)
- Fold in the cocoa powder then drop the mixture into the remaining paper cases using a teaspoon until they’re each about half full, then repeat step 5 but this time with two milk chocolate Lindors.
- Pop in the oven and bake for about 12-15 minutes until a cocktail stick inserted into the sponge comes out clean.
- When baked, place on a wire rack and leave to cool. At this stage the cakes can be frozen for decorating at a later date if you wish.
For the icing:
- Chop the remaining Lindors into small pieces and place the white chocolate ones into a heatproof bowl. Leave some of the flaky chocolate crumbs on the chopping board as these can be used to decorate the cakes at the end.
- Place the bowl over a saucepan of hot water without letting the bottom touch the water and stir occasionally, or heat in short bursts of LOW heat in the microwave (this is important – don’t put the white chocolate on a high heat for long periods or it will seize and turn lumpy and horrible), until completely melted.
- Place half of the cream cheese into a separate bowl and stir while pouring in the melted chocolate until a smooth, spreadable icing has formed. Work quickly as the chocolate will begin to set quite rapidly. If the mixture is excessively runny, add some icing sugar.
- Spread the icing onto the cooled vanilla cupcakes using a palette knife.
- Repeat steps 1 to 4 but this time with the milk chocolate Lindors and cupcakes.
- Sprinkle the remaining milk chocolate crumbs onto the white chocolate cakes and vice versa to decorate. Then grab one and devour it while you still can.
*Yes, this really does enhance the chocolatey flavour of the sponge, it’s no myth! And I promise it won’t make the cakes taste of coffee (this coming from a coffee hater, so trust me).