|Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 19g||24%|
|Saturated Fat 11g||54%|
|Total Carbohydrate 51g||19%|
|Dietary Fiber 1g||5%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
Baba au rhum (also known as rum baba) is a lovely yeast-risen cake studded with dried fruit and soaked in hot rum syrup. Once the darling of French cuisine, it fell out of favor, but it is so good to see it back and as popular as ever.
This recipe features the delicate flavor of citrus with just a hint of orange and lemon zest. Likewise, a small amount of warm vanilla has been added to the soaking syrup to cut down on the rum’s boldness. The result is a rum baba that's full of complex layers of flavor while still holding to the traditional French recipe.
To make this recipe, you'll need 12 baba molds. Because it does include a hard liquor syrup, and the alcohol is not cooked off, it's best to avoid serving it to children or those who abstain from alcohol.
- For the Cake:
- 1 tablespoon dry yeast
- 3 tablespoons water (warm)
- 3 eggs (beaten)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup butter (softened)
- 3/4 cup golden raisins (or dried currants)
- 3 tablespoons dark rum
- For the Rum Syrup:
- 3 cups water
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 to 2/3 cup dark rum (to taste)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup apricot preserves (heated)
- Garnish: vanilla Chantilly cream
Note: While there are multiple steps to this recipe, this rum cake is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for preparation and baking.
Make the Cake
Gather the ingredients.
Stir the yeast and the warm water together in a large bowl and allow the yeast to dissolve for 5 minutes.
Lightly beat the eggs into the yeast and water.
In a small bowl, mix the flour, sugar, citrus zests, and salt together.
Stir the mixture into the yeast and eggs.
Knead the dough with the softened butter for about 5 minutes, until it turns soft and elastic.
Cover the dough and allow it to rise for 1 hour, until it doubles in size.
While the dough is rising, soak the raisins or currants in 3 tablespoons of rum.
Once the dough has doubled, beat the rum-soaked fruit into it.
Grease the baba molds and divide the dough among them.
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Cover the molds and allow the dough to rise for 30 to 45 minutes, or until the dough has just started to rise above the molds’ edges.
Uncover the babas and bake them for 20 to 25 minutes, until they turn golden brown and begin to pull away from the sides of the molds.
Immediately remove the babas from the molds and allow them to cool on a wire rack.
Make the Rum Syrup
Gather the ingredients.
While the babas are cooling, make the rum soaking syrup. In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, bring the water and sugar to a boil for 5 to 10 minutes, until the syrup has thickened.
Remove the syrup from the heat and stir the rum and vanilla extract into the mixture.
Assemble the Rum Baba
Place the babas into the hot rum syrup and turn them several times, allowing them to soak up the syrup. They will swell and absorb most of the syrup.
Carefully transfer each baba onto a dessert plate and brush with a generous amount of heated apricot preserves.
Garnish the babas au rhum with vanilla Chantilly cream. Serve immediately and enjoy.
What Is a Baba Mold?
Baba molds are tall, cylindrical baking molds that create small, individual-sized cakes. They come in various sizes—4 ounces is typical—and are often sold in sets of six. It is a traditional way to bake French rum baba, though not your only option. Muffin tins work well, just make sure to fill them no more than halfway. Or you can make a large cake by pouring the batter into a fluted ring pan. Once baked, you'll have to pour the syrup over the larger cake, resulting in a rum-soaked cake similar to Polish babka, which inspired this French recipe.