The New Bakers Dozen
milk chocolate in warm choco. cake

The The Bakers Dozen: milk chocolate in warm choco. cake
By Dolphinwaves (Dolphinwaves) on Saturday, March 20, 2004 - 01:25 pm: Edit

In the restaurant I'm working in I've been asked to do the warm chocolate cake that everyone does. Even though I feel it is too over done, one must do what one must do. My problem though is that I tried doing it with milk chocolate. I kind of made up a recipe, it worked with the bittersweet chocolate, so when I got the milk choco. in I tried it but it didn't work, it didn't hold it's shape, more like a pancake, than a muffin. I thought maybe it needed more flour, but that didn't make a difference. So the only thing I can think of is the chocolate difference. So my question is, would the chocolate make that big of a difference? and is there a way to fix it, could I add cocoa butter to it?

By Cheftim (Cheftim) on Saturday, March 20, 2004 - 05:22 pm: Edit

I have to think that milk chocolate will make a big difference but how to correct for it...?
When I make molten chocolate cake I put a ball of truffle paste in the center before baking. Why don't you use the usual recipe an then add a piece of milk chocolate to the center before baking.

By Scott123 (Scott123) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 11:39 am: Edit

I depends on what brand of milk/bittersweet chocolate you are using but generally substituting milk for bittersweet is the equivalent of adding powdered whole milk, sugar and cocoa butter to your recipe and subtracting cocoa.

I know that sugar interferes with gluten formation, possibly giving you a weaker formation.

And the increase in fat from the melted cocoa butter might be making your dough slacker.

Are you absolutely sure adding flour doesn't help? How much flour did you add?

If you posted the recipe you're using, that would give us the best chance to figure out your problem.

By Pastrycrew (Pastrycrew) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 07:50 pm: Edit

I'm guessing you want the flavor of milk chocolate, but it isn't as sturdy as bittersweet chocolate. Try using your milk chocolate, but also cut it with 100% chocolate. It should give you the firm texture you need, but also retain the flavor of the milk chocolate. Maybe 70/30 milk chocolate/100% chocolate. Regards, bkt

By Dolphinwaves (Dolphinwaves) on Tuesday, March 23, 2004 - 12:23 am: Edit

here's my recipe
6 oz chocolate
6 oz butter
6 whole eggs
200 gr. sugar
30 gr. flour
When I used bittersweet it worked, but the milk chocolate didn't hold its shape, tasted really good though. I did try adding more flour but only doubled it didn't have the time to try more flour. I am using Valrhona choco, and I have Albert Uster's high end milk chocolate coming in tomorrow to try out.
What is 100% chocolate? Is that like in Valrhona Caribe is 66%cocoa, so 100% is 100% cocoa, who carries that I've seen stuff above 70% but not 100%?

By Pastrycrew (Pastrycrew) on Tuesday, March 23, 2004 - 12:37 pm: Edit

cocoa barry = grand caraque 100% (its also called chocolate liquor or bakers chocolate) unsweetened.

i dont know any other name brands right off.

By Scott123 (Scott123) on Tuesday, March 23, 2004 - 01:52 pm: Edit

I just did a little research into the cocoa butter and sugar content of dark chocolate and milk chocolate. Since neither Albert Uster's nor Valrhona's website lists nutritional info, I compared cadbury milk and ghiardelli bittersweet. As far as I can tell, fat content is almost exactly the same and sugar content is only slightly more in the milk. With that in mind, I don't think this is about ingredients.

It could be two things. First, the milk chocolate, because it has been tempered to a slightly lower melting point, is melting too soon for your egg/flour proteins to set. And second, the procedure you follow could be a huge factor here. I know butter based chocolate chip cookies will flatten out if the butter used it too melted/warm. I've seen some chocolate chip cookie recipes that recommend chilling the dough before baking for the least amount of flattening. How are you melting/adding both your butter/chocolate to the recipe? Did you follow exactly the same procedure with your dark chocolate version that you did with the milk?

You might want to refrigerate the batter briefly and then try baking it.

By Corey (Corey) on Tuesday, March 23, 2004 - 05:58 pm: Edit

try these batons:

I used these for a while in puff pastry and they were great. I learned this from school.

By Avanter (Avanter) on Thursday, March 25, 2004 - 04:11 pm: Edit

There certainly is a huge diffrence between fat contents of milk and bittersweet choc. The number on choc represents the % of cocoa mass is in the product, since milk choc is pretty much the same whereever you get it, that runs at 35%. There are some milk chocs that run down to 31%, those are very milky and have a high dairy content. Dark choc will usually run in at 51%, and Dark unsweetend comes in as the champ anywhere from 71-100%. Cocoa butter comes in last with a paltry 0%.

Try this Rx. Butter and sugar molds before service time, and make the batter in advance. you should make a new batter everyday, since I dont know how busy it is where you work, you might want to do this on weekends, as it can get expensive throwing out old batter every morning.

1# 5oz. Butter (softend not melted)
1# Semi sweet choc
3 oz. Bitter sweet
12oz. eggs
8 1/2 oz. yolks
10 1/2 oz. Pastry Flour
1# 5 oz. 10X sugar

method: sift 10X and Flour, set aside. Melt chocs togeather, add soft butter, whisk eggs/yolks into chocs, stir flour/sugar into that. scoop and bake (400F convection) to order.

If you wanted, exchange the semi for the milk, but you will have to cut out on the yolks to compensate for the higher fat content of the milk choc. I would suggest halving the yolks. If still unstable, half the butter as well. The key is to compensate for the high fat content of the milk choc by taking out fat already in the recipie, not adding flour. This will ensure your cake has the propoer raito of solidifiers and liquifiers while still maintaing proper mouthfeel and flavor.

The center of this cake should be gooey when you are done baking it, dont worry if they start leaking, it just adds to the presentation :). I suggest using a brioche mold (whatever size you want) to give it nice edges. Goes good with a little port reduction and vanilla ice cream.

hope this helps


By Scott123 (Scott123) on Friday, March 26, 2004 - 05:05 am: Edit

> There certainly is a huge diffrence between fat contents of milk and bittersweet choc.

I stand corrected. After doing some more research I did find out that there is a substantial difference between the fat content of milk and bittersweet chocolate.

>...but you will have to cut out on the yolks to compensate for the higher fat content of the milk choc.

Milk chocolate is not higher in fat. Semisweet is.

According to the Scharffenberger website, % cocoa mass indicates the fraction (by weight) of the bar that comes from the cacao bean. This includes both the fat free cocoa solids as well as cocoa butter. As the % cocoa mass increases, so does the cocoa butter/amount of fat. Although there are exceptions to this rule (some companies add cocoa butter by itself to their recipes) the general rule of thumb is that higher percentage cocoa mass chocolate has more fat.

Here is the link:

Here is another link that lists fat content for each of Scharffenberger's chocolates (notice the disparity between milk and extra dark):

I still contest that it's the temper of the two chocolates rather than the differing fat content (or any other ingredient) that is causing the collapse. And possibly the procedures that the recipe outlines. If the problem were related to fat content, milk choc., with considerably less fat, should have less propensity to spread out, not more.

By Dolphinwaves (Dolphinwaves) on Saturday, March 27, 2004 - 01:04 am: Edit

I tried making the recipe tonight cutting the butter in half and eliminating one yolk. This was much better except one thing, it burned before it was done. I cooked it at 450, like I did the bittersweet and the top was burnt but the inside was still gooey, like it should be. The second one I baked at 425 then raised the temp. to 450 this was better but wasn't gooey and was burnt on the bottom. Third time I cooked the whole time at 425 and this seemed the best but it took 15 min.(which is too long and by the way these aren't in a convection, which I know would help with times, but I don't have one available to me at service time so I shouldn't even bother to try to bake in it), the bottom was burnt, top was fine and inside was gooey but could have gone longer. So I think its time to throw the towel in on this one. Maybe it can be done but not with this recipe.

By Scott123 (Scott123) on Saturday, March 27, 2004 - 02:04 am: Edit

Even though it sounds like you're moving past this project, for future reference you might want to think about adding whole dried milk powder and some extra sugar to your bittersweet chocolate recipe to mimic using milk chocolate. That might circumvent your milk chocolate melting issue.

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