Buttery and sweet with a kick of Rum, Baba’s pack a punch when it comes to flavour. It is believed they were invented in the 18th century by Polish pastry chef Nicolas Storer. The original cakes were made with sweet fortified wine and it was only a century later that this was replaced by Rum.
Storer’s bakery can still be found in Paris , and is one of the oldest pàtisserie’s in the city. The rum baba’s are still made there today. However if Paris is out of your reach , try give them a go.
We begin by making the baba dough:
250g cake flour
15ml castor sugar
7g instant dry yeast or 15 g fresh yeast
70ml full cream milk, tepid
3 eggs, lightly beaten
70g unsalted butter, diced and at room temperature
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a dough hook, place the tepid milk, sugar and yeast. Whisk until the yeast is dissolved. Add the flour and salt. Mix on a medium speed until all the ingredients are just combined. Add the eggs a little at a time, then turn the mixer up higher and mix for five minutes.
Slowly add the butter a little at a time, allowing each piece to be fully incorporated before adding the next. Continue to knead for a further ten minutes until smooth and elastic.
In the meantime prepare the syrup:
250 g castor sugar
zest and juice of half a lemon
Place all the ingredients in a saucepan over a medium heat. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Bring to the boil and allow to simmer for five minutes until slightly reduced and syrupy.