Rum Babas: Test 2

After the mishaps with the previous test, I chose to keep this one simple and just let the rum shine through without any spices or additives. This resulted in a much gentler and more pleasing flavor.
Cook Time2 minutes
Total Time2 hours 30 minutes
Print Recipe
Yield: 12 small cakes

Equipment

  • Medium bowl
  • Rubber spatula
  • 3 Tbsp cookie scoop
  • Mini bunt pan with 12 wells
  • Sauce pan

Ingredients

For the Babas

  • 220 g bread flour
  • 7 g dry active yeast
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 50 g granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 100 g butter, softened

For the Rum Syrup

  • 1/4 cup rum
  • 200 g water
  • 220 g granulated sugar

Instructions

For the Babas

  • The flour and sugar were combined in the bowl of a standing mixer along with the salt and yeast, added on opposite sides of the bowl to avoid too much direct contact. I am not sure if this is really significant but some people say that salt can retard the yeast’s activity and so avoiding direct contact is good. I have never seen this to be a problem with dry yeast personally. The ingredients were then mixed together.
  • In a separate bowl, the milk and eggs were whisked until homogeneous.
  • The egg mixture was added to the flour mixture and combined using a dough hook on medium low speed. This dough was very sticky and so lent itself better to mixing with the dough hook than by hand. I allowed to mixer to run for 10 minutes until the dough looked smooth and elastic.
  • I added the butter to the dough with the mixer running and let the mixer knead the dough until smooth and shiny again.
  • The dough left to rise for an hour and a half until doubled in size.
  • The oven was heated to 350°F
  • Once risen, the dough was mixed again to release the air and divided into the mini bunt cake molds. My mold holds 12 individual bunts. These are quite small. Each can hold about 3 Tablespoons of batter. A 3 Tbsp scoop is very useful here and dividing the dough with a scoop means the cakes are more even and have fewer seams where the dough meets. If you make multiple additions into each cake well, you end up with seams where the dough doesn't quite adhere to itself.
  • Once doled out, the dough was allow to rise again until molds were filled nearly to the top.
  • They were bake for 20 minutes.

For the Rum Syrup

  • While the babas were baking, all of the ingredients were added to a small pot and brought to a rolling boil.
  • The syrup was then cooled to room temperature. When it snows here, placing the syrup in the snow really speeds up this process. Think outside the box (house)!

Assembly

  • When everything is cooled and ready to be assembled, I aided the syrup penetration by pricking the bottoms of the cakes with a fork and then letting the cakes absorb half of the syrup before flipping and repeating. I let my cakes then strain on a cooling rack for an hour before packaging them away until ready to serve.
  • You can top these cakes as you please when serving. Options include whipped cream and fruit or just fruit compote. There are nearly endless possibilities here but I opted for simple whipped cream and some canned and fresh peaches with a sprig of mint.

Results

These babas were lovely. The yeast was able to shine through the syrup because it wasn’t overloaded with flavors and the rum was able to make itself noticed. All in all, no one can say “tastes like wet gingerbread” about these lovelies. 

References

Rum babas

Parent Notebook

Rum Baba

Published by

Tali Perlov

I'm a baking addict with a history of messing around in a lab. Science, an intense interest in food and flavor, and creative genes! Thus, Exploratory Kitchen was born! A scientific approach to producing delicious and customizable foods with the aim to understand the ingredients and not just follow the recipe.

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