No, not fondue. We're not at 1970s dinner party . I think that the word means melted (Francophones please correct if needed), which is a good description. Update: shazamed tells me that 'melt in the mouth' is a better translation.

Anyway, on to the recipe. This took about two months of trial, error and pain to get the quantities. I can tell you now that this dish will make everyone think that you are the kitchen god. It is among the select elite of dishes that would get waiters scurrying into the kitchen saying "girl on table 5 says she wants to marry you", which is always nice.

Quantities, as ever, are a little vast, but what the hell. Keep the uncooked ones in the fridge: they last about a week, I'd say, and you can have the most amazing sweet in under ten minutes. Makes 14.

You will need

You will need 14 small metal pudding basins, darioles, or ramekins. unperson asks if muffin tins would do. Yes, they should work fine. They should be about the size of a US cup, or 250ml. These should be chilled in the freezer, brushed inside with melted butter, and dusted with cocoa powder. You don't want these babies sticking!

Melt the butter and chocolate together. By far the easiest way of doing this is in the microwave. Otherwise in a pan over a gentle heat. Whisk the eggs, yolks and sugar until fluffy. Whisk in the melted choc mix, flour and cocoa and pour into your basins.

oakling asks what I mean by fluffy. You should see an obvious moment when the mixture takes on air. You don't need to get a huge amount in. You don't want to take it as far as if you were making merigue (though that would be hard with the yolks in there). It will not be firm peaks by any stretch. When you've added the other ingredients, the mixture should be a rich chestnut brown. If you take it too far, just keep gently stirring the mixture with a whisk or spoon and the fat should break it down.

Chill until set. When you're ready to serve them, preheat your oven to about 200° and bake your little puds for 7 minutes. I say seven, but this was specific to our oven. You want it to rise in its tin. If perfect it should be light and crispy on the outside, spongy inside that, then foamy and finally a delicious warm melted chocolate goo in the very centre.

When you reckon they're cooked, take them from the oven, run a small knife around the rim to loosen them and turn them out onto plates.
Serve with softly whipped cream. When you cut through them with your spoon, the liquid centre should flow out like a sauce. It's making me hungry writing this!

Disclaimer: this is packed full of lightly cooked eggs, saturated fat, sugar, calories and other tasty stuff. As such it is unsuitable for pregnant women, young children, dieters and food haters. The UK government recommends cooking eggs fully. ascorbic recommends living a little.
"Puritan eating: you won't live longer, it'll just feel like you are"

Let me know if you cook these! Especially if you're putting them on a menu. As of 2007, to the best of my knowledge, they are on the menu at three restaurants on three continents. And if you're going to put them in your recipe book, please credit Matt Kane as the originator!

Update: sneff says The very first customer who had it walked INTO the kitchen and said he was blown away - and demanded to know how we did it - so I told him of ascorbic and E2 - he was big impressed.

Update 2nd May 2003: sneff says re Chocolate Fondant: You know - It has been well over a year, and we *still* cant take this fucker off the menu. I hate you

discofever says Chocolate Fondant : half a kilo of chocolate, almost half a kilo of butter. there is no snide or sarcastic remark i can make about this. reading this recipe is akin to going to New York after a lifetime out in the sticks or maybe seeing Mt. Kilimanjaro looming through the clouds. this recipe makes you feel so small.

Nov 2007: wroughtirony says Your fondants (I'm calling them "molten chocolate torta" as we're (supposedly) Italian), have been on the menu less than a week and the servers are already referring to them as "sex on a plate" :-)

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