Many years ago chocolate was not enjoyed as the sweet candy or dessert treat that we know of today. Native South American tribes such as the Olmecs, the Incas, the Aztecs and the Mayans were the first to serve chocolate as an unsweetened beverage, using fermented cacao beans to make a bitter drink usually flavoured with various spices including hot chili peppers.
Lightly butter 8 ramekins or custard cups and set aside.
Melt the semisweet and unsweetened chocolate, stir in the butter and sugar and mix until smooth.
Add eggs and stir until smooth and incorporated. Sift the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder together and add to mixture.
Mix in the crushed dry chilies.
Beat at high speed for 5 minutes or until the mixture is thick and mousse-like.
Fill ramekins ⅔ full, cover with plastic wrap and freeze for at least 3 hours.
Just before serving, bake in pre-heated 375 F oven for 15 to 20 minutes (edges should be set, but centers are still moist and shiny).
Serve in ramekins or carefully invert each portion onto serving plate and serve warm.
Garnish with raspberry sauce, sprinkle icing sugar or Liberté lemon yogurt or if you like that extra heat, a pinch of cayenne.
Check stores like Earth's General Store and Jacek's Chocolates (in Edmonton) for imported chocolate Central and South America.
All peppers are chilies and are members of the capsicum family. Originating from Latin America (think Christopher Columbus), they are now found all over the world. As a general rule, the larger the chile, the milder it is. Small chiles are much hotter because proportionally, they contain more seeds and veins than larger specimens and those seeds and membranes can contain up to 80% of the chile’s Capsaicin, the potent compound that gives chiles their fiery nature.