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Rum Baba

Rum Baba-16Oh, how I love using my bundt pan. With no effort on my part, my dessert bakes into a beautiful shape and I don’t even have to decorate it. It’s naturally beautiful and flawless. Rum Baba is a classic dessert. I know that many countries prepare it, and so did the Soviet Union. The Soviet bakeries would have these pretty cakes on display, usually in a miniature form, so it was kind of like buying a muffin of sorts.

It is an equal mix of a yeast bread and a cake. It’s very soft and delicate. You’ll see when you’re making the dough that it’s very runny and not at all like bread or other yeast bread dough, so it’s more like a cake batter consistency. After it’s baked, the Rum Baba is soaked all the way through with a rum syrup, so it’s very moist. Studded with raisins or any other kind of dry fruit that you choose, you can also use some orange or lemon zest for extra aroma and flavor. Just like a cake, it is absolutely amazing served with freshly whipped cream.

You can also bake these into little Rum Babas, using miniature bundt cake baking pans, or even use popover cake pans.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup raisins or dried currants

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup milk, warmed to 110 degrees Fahrenheit

4 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon orange zest, optional

1/2 cup butter, cut into 1/2 – 3/4 inch pieces, softened to room temperature, plus 1 extra Tablespoon for buttering the cake pan

Rum Syrup:

1 1/4 cup water

1/2 – 3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 – 1/2 cup rum

1/2 cup orange marmalade, apricot preserves or apple jelly

Instructions:

Rum Baba-1-18Place the raisins in a bowl and pour in enough boiling water to cover them. Rum Baba-3This step is optional, but I really like doing it, because it softens the raisins and makes them really plump and juicy. Let the raisins stand while you prepare the dough.

Combine the flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Rum Baba-2Mix to combine.

Add the warm milk, eggs and vanilla (and orange zest, if you’re using it), mixing to combine. Normally I would add zest, but I didn’t have any oranges in the house. I used a standing mixer with a dough hook attachment, but you can even make this dough by hand.

Rum Baba-4With the mixer running on medium low speed, add the warm butter pieces one at a time, until the dough is evenly mixed and all the butter is incorporated. The dough will be pretty runny.

Rum Baba-5Drain the raisins and add them to the batter, mixing to combine.

Rum Baba-6Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and set aside in a warm place to rise until it doubles in size, 1 – 2 hours.

Meanwhile, butter a bundt pan with 1 Tablespoon of softened butter, making sure you get into all the corners and butter the top as well, since the dough will rise all the way to the top.

When the dough has doubled, pour it out into the prepared bundt pan. Rum Baba-7Cover it with plastic wrap that has been sprayed with oil and set it aside to rise for another hour or so, until the dough rises all the way to the top of the bundt pan.
Rum Baba-8While you are waiting for the dough to rise, preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Bake the Rum Baba for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of it comes out clean. While the Rum Baba bakes, make the rum syrup by combining the water and sugar in a small saucepan and heating it just until the sugar dissolves.

The Rum Baba itself won’t be sweet, so you can make the syrup as sweet as you like. Add more or less sugar, it’s totally up to you. Pour in the rum, also adding more or less, depending on how much rum flavor you want the Rum Baba to have.

Rum Baba-9I know I’ll get asked if you can substitute something else for the rum and you sure can. You can add some peach syrup, vanilla, almond extract, lemon/orange extract and zest to the Rum Syrup instead of the rum. However, it won’t be a Rum Baba then, but I’m sure it will be tasty too. You’ll have to do your own experimentation, since I’ve never tried any other flavorings; I like the rum.

When the Rum Baba has finished baking, remove it from the bundt pan. Rum Baba-10I like to set the “cake” into something that has rimmed edges, like this baking sheet, since it will hold the rum syrup as you’re pouring it over the cake. Pour the rum syrup as evenly as you can all over the Rum Baba. Rum Baba-11You will need to use all of the syrup, so as some of it drips off into the baking sheet, get it with a spoon and pour it back over the cake. The important thing is to have the syrup penetrate into the entire cake, not just on the outside.

Warm the orange marmalade (or apricot preserves/apple jelly) and brush it all over the surface of the Rum Baba and then transfer it to a serving plate.Rum Baba-1-19

Rum Baba-15Serve with whipped cream; it’s such a wonderful combination. The Rum Baba is best served the same day.Rum Baba-16

Rum Baba
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Sweets
Serves: 1 Rum Baba
Ingredients
  • ½ cup raisins or dried currants
  • 2½ cups all purpose flour
  • 2¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup milk, warmed to 110 degrees Fahrenheit
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest, optional
  • ½ cup butter, cut into ½ - ¾ inch pieces, softened to room temperature, plus 1 extra Tablespoon for buttering the cake pan
Rum Syrup:
  • 1¼ cup water
  • ½ - ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ - ½ cup rum
  • ½ cup orange marmalade, apricot preserves or apple jelly
Instructions
  1. Place the raisins in a bowl and pour in enough boiling water to cover them. This step is optional, but I really like doing it, because it softens the raisins and makes them really plump and juicy. Let the raisins stand while you prepare the dough.
  2. Combine the flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Mix to combine. I used a standing mixer with a dough hook attachment, but you can even make this by hand.
  3. Add the warm milk, eggs and vanilla (and orange zest, if you're using it), mixing to combine.
  4. With the mixer running on medium low speed, add the warm butter pieces one at a time, until the dough is evenly mixed and all the butter is incorporated. The dough will be pretty runny.
  5. Drain the raisins and add them to the batter, mixing to combine.
  6. Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and set aside in a warm place to rise until it doubles in size, 1 - 2 hours.
  7. Meanwhile, butter a bundt pan with 1 Tablespoon of softened butter, making sure you get into all the corners and butter the top as well, since the dough will rise all the way to the top.
  8. When the dough has doubled, pour it out into the prepared bundt pan. Cover it with plastic wrap that has been sprayed with oil and set it aside to rise for another hour or so, until the dough rises all the way to the top of the bundt pan.
  9. While you are waiting for the dough to rise, preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake the Rum Baba for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of it comes out clean. While the Rum Baba bakes, make the rum syrup by combining the water and sugar in a small saucepan and heating it just until the sugar dissolves.
  10. The Rum Baba itself won't be sweet, so you can make the syrup as sweet as you like. Add more or less sugar, it's totally up to you. Pour in the rum, also adding more or less, depending on how much rum flavor you want the Rum Baba to have.
  11. When the Rum Baba has finished baking, remove it from the bundt pan. I like to set the "cake" into something that has rimmed edges, like this baking sheet, since it will hold the rum syrup as you're pouring it over the cake. Pour the rum syrup as evenly as you can all over the Rum Baba. You will need to use all of the syrup, so as some of it drips off into the baking sheet, get it with a spoon and pour it back over the cake.
  12. Warm the orange marmalade (or apricot preserves/apple jelly) and brush it all over the surface of the Rum Baba and then transfer it to a serving plate.
  13. Serve with whipped cream; it's such a wonderful combination. The Rum Baba is best served the same day.

2 Comments

  • Olena@iFOODreal

    Looks amazing, Olya! I will be eating with my eyes.:) Whenever I go to an Italian bakery, I always notice their rum babas. Overall, their desserts remind me of Russian ones. I treat myself at times. I hope your little one is doing well.:)

  • Tzivia

    Wow another beautiful gorgeous stunning dessert creation olya mmmmm yummmm love bundt cakes and babkas too it looks like a cross between a bundt and a babka good to know that I can make this by hand too love that you can get really creative with this type of bubka cross btw bundt and babka lmao

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