Local firefighter wins Tabasco cook-off


Captain Tracy Moore with her award-winning Mount Tabasco chocolate lava cake.Photos courtesy Tracy Moore

A couple of weeks ago, Hot Dish reported that Captain Tracy Moore of Minneapolis Fire Department Station 5 in South Minneapolis was headed to NYC to duke it out culinary style with other firefighters-cum-chefs.

Moore's recipe for "Mt. Tabasco Chocolate Lava Cake," well, it took the cake! Moore beat out nine others and earns herself not only bragging rights but $10,000, half of which will go to the station.

Here is the winning recipe!

Mount Tabasco Chocolate Lava Cake 2009 Tabasco Cook & Ladder Competition Grand Prize Winner Tracy Moore - Minneapolis, MN Fire Department



8 oz. bittersweet chocolate squares 2 sticks unsalted butter 4 eggs 1/2 c. sugar 1 Tb. Tabasco habanero sauce 4 Tb. unbleached wheat flour 1 t. ground nutmeg 1/2 t. ground cinnamon pinch of salt 3 Tb. confectioners sugar

Jalapeno pepper garnish

8 red jalapeno peppers 1 c. vinegar 1 c. water (divided) 2 cinnamon sticks 6 cloves 1 t. ground cardamom 1 c. sugar

Preheat oven to 350.

Chop chocolate squares and butter into small cubes; melt in a double boiler, stirring constantly until melted. Remove from heat and set aside.

Grease 8 (4-oz.) ramekins (or a muffin tin, if that is all you have).

In a bowl, whisk together eggs and sugar.

Add habanero sauce to chocolate sauce mixture. Stir chocolate mixture into egg mixture; add flour, pinch of salt, nutmeg and cinnamon. Stir until blended.

Refrigerate and prepare the jalapeno pepper garnish as follows.

Slice peppers to make an opening, keeping pepper intact. Scrape out seeds and white seams.

Heat an 800ml glass jar in boiling water until warm. Place peppers in jar and close it.

Boil vinegar and 1/2 c. of water in medium saucepan; add cinnamon sticks, cloves and cardamom. Remove jar from pan; pour mixture into jar and re-seal jar; set aside for 15 minutes.

Mix one cup of water and sugar in a pan; bring to slow boil. Dip each pickled jalapeno pepper in sugar water; place pepper on cake.

When finished with garnish, pour lava cake batter into ramekins or muffin tins, filling 3/4 of the way. Bake for 13-15 minutes. (The top should be soft in the middle and cake-like on rim.)

While the cake is baking, mix one cupe of water and and sugar in a pan; bring to slow boil. When the cakes come out, sprinkle the top with sifted confectioners sugar. Then dip peppers in sugar water and put one on each cake.

Serve immediately.

Makes 8 individual lava cakes.