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.
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.
Preparation Time20 min
Preparation Time - Text20 mins, plus rising
Cooking Time20 min
Cooking Time - Text20
Total Timeunder 2 hours
Make Ahead RecipeYes
OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Formal Dinner Party
Taste and Texturecreamy, rich, sweet
Type of Dishdessert
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 ½ tsp instant yeast
- Pinch salt
- 1¼ cup tepid whole milk
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 4 tbsp butter, melted and cooled, plus more for the molds
- 1/3 cup raisins
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 3 tbsp dark rum
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- 1 tbsp confectioners sugar
- 1 oz (30g) bittersweet chocolate, for garnish
- 4 individual baba molds
- Piping bag
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
2008 Dorling Kindersley