These individual flourless desserts are a step up from a molten centre cake (fondant cake). A flourless gingerbread cookie (delicious as a cut-out cookie, all on its own) encases a rich chocolate filling that when baked and served warm, surprises each guest when they break into the crisp, cookie exterior to find a centre of warm chocolate loveliness.
Makes six 5 oz (150 mL) individual desserts
Beat the butter and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl until well combined. Stir in the molasses and egg yolk. In a separate bowl, stir together the rice flour, tapioca starch, ginger, cinnamon, clove, baking powder and salt and add this to the butter mixture, stirring until blended. If needed you can scrape the dough onto a work surface and knead slightly to bring it together. Shape the dough into a log, wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours before rolling.
Pull out the dough 30 minutes before rolling. Cut the log into 6 equal pieces. On a lightly floured surface (use rice flour blended with a touch of tapioca starch for rolling), knead one piece of the dough slightly to soften. Roll out the dough to just under ¼-inch (6 mm) thickness and cut out a 4-1/2 inch (11.5 cm) round cookie cutter. Repeat with the remaining 5 pieces of dough. Grease six 5-ounce (150 mL) ramekins and line then with the dough (don’t worry if the dough cracks a little when pressing the dough in – you can pinch the cracks together with your fingers). The dough won’t come all the way up to the top of the ramekin. Re-roll the dough scraps into a disc and cut out 6 circles using a 3-inch (7.5 cm) round cookie cutter and set aside.
For the filling, melt the chocolate in a metal bowl place over a pot filled with an inch or barely simmering water, stirring gently until melted. Set the chocolate aside to cool.
Gently whisk the egg yolks with ¼ cup (50 g) of the sugar, and whisk in the fresh ginger and vanilla. Whisk in the chocolate and cocoa powder.
In a separate bowl, using electric beaters or a stand mixer fitted with the whip attachment, whip the egg whites on high speed until foamy and then add the remaining ¼ cup (50 g) of sugar, whipping until the white holds a soft peak when the beaters are lifted. Fold this into the chocolate mixture in 2 additions.
Divide the chocolate mixture evenly between the 6 ramekins and top each with the small cookie discs, gently pressing at the edges, but trying to keep the top as level as possible. Chill the cookie cakes until ready to bake.
Preheat the oven to 375 ºF (190 ºC). Place the ramekins on a baking tray and bake for 12-14 minutes, until you see the cookie brown at the edges (don’t worry if the filling soufflés a touch and pushes up the top cookie case – once flipped, this becomes the bottom.) Let the cookie cakes cool 2-3 minutes before gently running a palette knife around the inside of the ramekin, inverting the cookie cake onto a plate and lifting off the ramekin. Enjoy immediately.