Friday, May 16, 2014

Ramekin Love: Pizookies and Chocolate Angel Food Cake

When Jeffrey and I were engaged and registering for wedding gifts, we learned some important things from each other. For example, Jeffrey introduced me to the wonders of measuring cups that let you see how much liquid you are pouring in from above rather than having to bend over and look at the fill lines on the side. I laughed at the time, but he was right; these things are awesome! No going back...

One thing I insisted that we add to our registry was ramekins. I don't know what it is about them; these small, white, ceramic serving bowls just make me happy. I think I feel like they add an air of sophistication to whatever you put in them. However, Jeffrey was skeptical. Unless I learned how to make crème brûlée, what were we going to do with them?

A lot, it turns out. These wonders are marvelously versatile. For example, they are just the right size for an individual serving of chicken pot pie. Since mother-dear and papi no longer need a whole pie for dinner, mama instead makes several small ones and leaves out two for dinner and freezes the rest. Brilliant, yes? Now when she goes out of town, daddy can just pull one of these from the freezer and bake for 45 minutes at 400 degrees and voila! A homemade entree much better than the yucky Swanson variety.

Or, if one needs a dish for a classy brunch, why not make Crustless Mini Quiches? Again, the ramekin is the perfect size.

However, I really won Jeffrey over to my ramekin-love with pizookies. On State Street in Orem, UT, there's this goofy house which looks out of place among so many businesses. This house-turned-into-a-dessert-cafe is called The Chocolate, and it is simply delicious. Our favorite thing to order is their pizza-cookie (christened "Cazookie" at this establishment.) It's basically a bowl of cookie dough baked until just golden on top and very soft inside, topped with a generous portion of vanilla ice cream.

Boy howdy it's good. But replicating it at home can be tricky. My roommate McCall would make a whole 9x13 panfull and quickly scoop it out into bowls with a giant spoon. This works with big groups and still tastes good, but it definitely doesn't look pretty. I've heard that others bake them in muffin tins. I've never tried it, but I imagine this method results in an awkward dynamic of gathering around the pan to eat them. The real solution? Bake individual pizookies in ramekins!

Perfection. I often whip up this chocolate chip cookie recipe, form individual balls, and store them in my fridge or freezer for cookie emergencies. For example, I had no idea that National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day was Thursday, May 15th this year. Luckily, I had the dough on hand. The cook times vary depending on how much cookie dough you add (I admit we usually use 3 balls of dough per ramekin.) In a 350 degree oven, bake until golden on top but very soft inside. With room-temperature dough, it takes about 14 minutes. Refrigerated? Around 16 minutes. Frozen? 18-20 minutes. Top with vanilla ice cream and enjoy immediately!

Admittedly, one doesn't always have cookie dough on hand, have 20 minutes to wait, or want to consume quite so many calories. The solution is to instead make Chocolate Angelfood Cake or 3-2-1 Cake, as mom calls it. This recipe is the easiest in the history of ever. You ready?

Chocolate Angelfood Cake (3-2-1 Cake)
1 chocolate cake mix
1 angelfood cake mix
2 TB water

Pour cake mixes into a gallon ziplock and combine thoroughly. Place 3 TB cake mix into a mug (or ramekin.)

Add 2 TB water. Stir thoroughly. Microwave for 1 minute.

Voila! That's it: 3 tablespoons of the cake mixture, 2 tablespoons of water, and 1 minute in the microwave. If using a mug, let the cake sit for 5 or so minutes to prevent it from being mushy. If using a ramekin, enjoy immediately (or it will actually get a little dry. If you have to wait, maybe the key is to only microwave it for 45 seconds with a ramekin? But 3-2-45 Cake is a terrible name...)

It will look really spongy like this:

As everything looks and tastes better with ice cream, you'd better top the cake with a scoop of vanilla as well:

1 comment :

  1. This looks delicious! I better go buy some ramekins....thanks for sharing!