Cakes and Cupcakes · Dessert · Recipes

French lessons

I wanted to learn French, so I picked up a cookbook, The Country Cooking of France by Anne Willan.  I could have bought the Rosetta Stone French lessons, but that wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun.

These little gems are called Les Canneles de Bordeaux.  They’re like a little creme brulee chewy cake with a crisp, caramelized exterior.  Each tiny cake is baked in its own little mold.  There’s just a hint of dark rum, which I love.

I’ve got the molds if anyone wants to give them a try.  Or you can just come to my house and I’ll make them for you.  Here’s the recipe from Anne Willan’s cookbook.  More French lessons to follow, I’ve got a whole book to get through.

Les Canneles de Bordeaux

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • melted butter, for the molds
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons dark rum (I used Myers)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

12 medium cannele molds

Place egg yolks in a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and mix until blended.  Add sugar and whisk until coarse crumb forms, about 2-3 minutes.  Add whole egg and continue to whisk until light and mixture holds a ribbon when the whisk is lifted.  Split the vanilla bean and scrape seeds into the mixture.  Add the bean to 1 cup of sugar to create vanilla sugar for another use.  Whisk in milk.  Transfer to a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Stir with a whisk until it thickens, then curdles and separates, about 3-5 minutes.  Set aside to cool, stirring often so the eggs do not clump together.

Meanwhile, heat oven to 400 degrees.  Brush molds with melted butter and set them on a baking sheet.  When mixture has cooled, stir in sifted flour until smooth.  Stir in rum and oil.  Pour into molds until  two-thirds full.  Bake for 55 minutes.  Let cool for 2-3 mintues, then unmold while still warm.

Greg Schroeder, owner of Amazing Grapes Wine Store

Greg says:

There are few, make that VERY few wines I’ll ever recommend from Temecula, but the Wilson Creek Angelica Sherry is worthy of respect and my choice for your Canneles. Normally, creme brulee gets paired all day long with Sauternes, but because this is essentially a cake, with a caramelized exterior and a hint of rum, this recipe calls for a sweet sherry.

The Wilson Creek Angelica Sherry is made from 100 year old vines. In fact, Angelica is considered the first wine made in California.  It was used in ceremonies by the Padres in the California missions.  This fortified dessert wine became known as “Angelica” in that it was sweet, heavenly, and long-lived.  With its beautiful flavors of caramel, hazelnut and vanilla, this sherry pairs beautifully with creme brulee or many other holiday desserts!

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