- Course: Dessert
- Total Time: Under 2 Hours
- Skill Level: Challenging
- Cost: Moderate
- Favorited: 17 Times
Can be made ahead of time.
These desserts are perfect to serve at a dinner party--just make these little rum-soaked cakes a day ahead and finish just before serving.
1. To make the babas, combine the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in a large bowl. Make a well in the center. Beat the milk, eggs, and butter together and pour into the well. Mix 3-4 minutes to make a smooth, thick batter. Stir in the raisins. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand in a warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes.
2. Generously butter 4 baba molds. Divide the batter among the molds. Cover with oiled plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place about 30 minutes, until doubled.
3. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the tops are light gold and spring back when pressed. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 5 minutes. Unmold onto the rack and cool completely.
4. To make the syrup, bring the sugar and ½ cup water to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Boil for 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and cool completely. Stir in the rum.
5. Use a wooden skewer to pierce holes over the surfaces of the babas. Transfer the babas to the syrup and let stand, turning often, until soaked. Stand each baba on a dessert plate.
6. Just before serving, whip the cream and confectioner's sugar just until soft peaks form. Transfer the cream to a pastry bag fitted with an open star tip, and pipe a rosette on each baba. Grate a little chocolate on each baba and serve with the remaining whipped cream.
Summer Fruit Babas: As a lighter summer variation, top the babas with summer berries rather than whipped cream.
Prune and Armagnac Babas: Substitute finely chopped prunes for the raisins, and Armagnac for the rum. Scatter a few chopped dried plums over the whipped cream instead of the chocolate.
Prepare ahead: You can bake the babas and make the syrup a day in advance.
Freezing Information: Freeze unsoaked babas for up to 3 months.