Sep 04

The Maltese Muffin.




Greetings all and welcome to a very special dessert post ~ it’s called the Maltese Muffin, courtesy of none other than Mr Alton Brown. I discovered these by total accident as I happened to be browsing thru some reruns of his Good Eats programme on the web. Initially I thought that it was going to be just an ordinary muffin but lo and behold … it came out more like a chocolate lava pudding than anything else. Now, chocolate puddings have got to be the BOMB! when it comes to dessert. I’m sure my boyfriend R would agree most heartily. If he could have chocolate lava pudding for breakfast, lunch and dinner, he would. He’s quite capable of doing so, as he proved a couple of months ago when I made a pavlova.



This “muffin” I am doing today is effectively a soft centred confection served with a sauce … a cheat’s sauce, if you will … the recipe of which will be given at bottom of this page. I watched in awe as the venerable Mr Alton Brown (A.B) demonstrated this recipe ~ it couldn’t be any simpler!! And you know I am all for simple for I have issues with patience.




Ingredients : (makes 10 – 12 portions)

  • 230 g semi-sweet chocolate
  • 113 g unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 65 g white caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 4 tbsp AP flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 4 large eggs




1. Melt chocolate and butter over a double boiler until everything turns into a bowlful of blissfully dark homogenous liquid. Take it off the heat source and get out your hand-held electric beaters.



2. Whisk the chocolate mixture to froth it up a little and also to cool it down in preparation to receive the eggs. Drop in the eggs one at a time, whisking continuously. The idea is to whip in as much air as possible to create a light and fluffy mixture.



3. Sift all the dry ingredients together and then slowly add them to the chocolatey egg mixture. Whisk on low speed unless you want to inhale all the flour and cocoa powder. Once the dry ingredients have been incorporated, bump up the speed to HIGH and whisk thoroughly for 5 minutes. The batter will now be pale and fluffy. Mine didn’t turn out as pale or fluffy as A.B’s … so maybe I needed to be less impatient and whisk for a further 5 mins.



4. Chill in the fridge. Now, Alton Brown did not specify how long to chill the bater for … so I just went with 20 – 30 mins. Meh. After the stipulated time had lapsed I removed the batter from the fridge to find that it had fiemed up to a more workable consistancy which made it easy to scoop out using an ice cream scoop without having chocolate batter running everywhere.



5. In the meantime, turn on your oven to 190ºC (that’s 375ºF). After that, prepare your regular 12-hole muffin pan by buttering them or using a non-stick spray. If you happen to have 100% complete faith in your non-stick pan, then by all means skip this process.



6. Remove the batter from the fridge and start filling the pans with an ice-cream scoop to get even portions of batter in each hole. Bake for 10 – 12 mins until the muffins are set on the edges yet still gooey in the centre. I am baffled as to how A.B got his muffin tops to get so domed like actual muffins, whereas mine kinda just lay flat. I suppose being A.B is what it takes to work miracles with food. No matter. These will still taste yummy. (Secretly questions tho, if A.B added a little baking powder / soda to assist in the rise of the batter).



7. Place on a rack to cool slightly. Meanwhile, make the cheat’s sauce to go with your lava muffins.






Cheat’s Sauce

Place 1 cup of your favourite vanilla ice cream in a sauce pan along with 1 tsp instant espresso coffee granules. Heat on low until it all comes together. And that’s it. 🙂 HOW AWESOME IS THAT?!


You could do so many things with this sauce. If you are not a fan of coffee then swirl in some strawberry puree instead … or butterscotch topping. How about some Crème de Menthe for an awesome chocolatey-minty combo. The options are endless. Alternatively, who says you need to make any sauce of any kind anyway? Personally I like my warm puddings to go with a chilled topping, so I’d so directly with a scoop of some top quality vanilla bean ice cream. Perhaps take a walk on the wilder side ( I know, I am boring … plain ol’ vanilla … pffft! ) and go with a banana flavoured ice cream and have nuts on top? The point is the pudding is what it is ~ a chocolate cake with a gooey chocolate core, but you can take it to a whole new level just by varying your choice of topping. In the featured picture at the top of the page as well as the picture below, I went for regular vanilla ice cream and simply poured over some Bailey’s.








So, I strongly suggest you try this out and I hope this will be a regular feature on your dining table. This dessert has everything going for it : It’s chocolate; it’s super simple to make; one batch makes over a dozen portions so it’s great for when you are entertaining large numbers; it’s cheap and most of all it’s YUMMY-LICIOUS!! All credit goes to A.B of course.




** I do apologize for the rubbish photo quality but it was the end of the day and I all I wanted to do was tear into one of these babies … so I kinda skimped on the extra effort to make the photos look nicer.




~ ENJOY!! ~






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