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flaming baba au rhum

In challenge on January 5, 2014 at 3:51 pm

well, this was only 75% successful…

when i saw this baba au rhum recipe in the new york times the day before new year’s, it struck as something i had to try immediately. a rum and chocolate cake? why yes, please! and what is a more appropriate night for a flaming cake than new year’s?? so festive!

let’s just say everything worked except the flaming.

the cake itself was delicious. it’s a not-to-sweet yeast cake (don’t be scared!), so it has that deliciously appealing bready, yeasty taste. but it also has a layer of bittersweet chocolate inside, adding a sweet surprise. and it’s made in a bundt pan, which for me conveys a sense of retro glam.

babaaurhumbaked

(the key to a successful bundt turnout is to grease the pan very, very, very well)

babaaurhumturnedout

then you make an orange-ginger-spice simple syrup and rum mixture to drench it in.

babaaurhumsyrup

setting the cake on a rack over a sheet pan means you can collect the syrup that runs off and repour it over the cake.

after soaking the cake in the sugar mixture, the recipe directs you to pour some rum into a sauce pan and ignite it on the stove. the recipe does not point out, for those who might not know, that this snazzy little technique is only doable on a gas stove…

that, however, was not my problem. it just wouldn’t ignite! so then we poured more rum over the cake and set a match to it directly – still no flambe.

finally after adding several more hearty pours of booze to the cake and numerous matches, we decided to forego the fire and settle for whipped cream.

babaaurhumserved

it was so moist (obviously! think tres leches) and subtly sweet and boozy. really, a great holiday dessert that i will definitely make again.

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