Posts Tagged ‘homemade canele’

My friend Anna, expat Aussie living in Paris, is an honorary member of our village, spending several weeks here every year with her family.  Check out her blog, Five In Paris, for a charming glimpse of Parisian life that you won’t read about in the travel books.

Anna and I have had an ongoing email discussion about canelés – a decadent French pastry baked in distinctly shaped pans.  When I complained that the only moulds I could source here were $11 each (so a set of a dozen would set you back $132), Anna promptly sent me a silicone canelé mould from France.  Despite my aversion to silicone, Anna assured me that it was perfect for this purpose and supplied me with her recipe as well.

These were sooooo good.  Like a caramelised crispy baked custard.  They were soooo good that they caused all the happiness receptors in my brain to fire, and I spent the next hour grinning like the Cheshire Cat.  Several thousand calories later, I rang Anna to debrief, and she generously agreed to let me post her recipe here.

To begin with, you need a canelé mould – and they’re not readily available here in Oz.  However, I tried baking some of the batter in muffin pans and the end results were delicious – better than the properly shaped ones in fact (possibly because of the metal tin).  They don’t look like much, but they’re very crispy and moreish – Pete preferred the muffin tin version over the fluted ones!

Anna’s Canelés
(adapted for my kitchen)

  • 500ml milk
  • 2 large (59g) eggs
  • 1 large (59g) egg yolk
  • 125g plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 225g sugar
  • 15g vanilla sugar
  • 15g melted unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons rum (optional)

1. Beat the eggs and egg yolk together in a heatproof bowl with a wire whisk. Bring the milk to a boil in a small saucepan.  Pour the hot milk over the beaten eggs, whisking constantly as you pour the milk in (or you’ll get scrambled eggs).  Leave to cool.

2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, vanilla sugar and melted butter. Gradually pour the cold milk and eggs over the flour mixture , whisking constantly to avoid any lumps.  Add the rum (optional) and mix well.  Leave the batter overnight or ideally for 24 hours.  I let it cool and then store it in a jug in the fridge until needed – give it a good stir and allow it to come back to room temperature before baking.

3.  Preheat oven to 180 – 190C with fan.  Anna’s original recipe  specified 200C, but that was too hot in my oven and the batch I cooked at that temperature burned.

4.  Grease the moulds with canola oil spray – give the muffin tins a good spray and the silicone moulds a light one.  Fill the moulds to ¾ full.  Bake for 60 minutes (I know, it’s hard to believe they won’t burn to a crisp, but they don’t).  You want the outsides to be very brown and the insides moist and tender.  Allow the cakes cooked in silicone to rest 10 minutes before removing, then let them cool completely before eating, to allow the exterior to crisp up.  Best eaten on the day they’re made!

The silicone moulds were fine for this purpose, although they certainly weren’t as non-stick as they’re reputed to be.  I found that unless I greased them lightly, the canelés would stick and collapse when removed from the moulds.

Anna mentioned that there’s no “right” way to cook these – Parisians will order their canelés to be cooked according to personal preference – very dark, slightly burnt, light brown and so forth.  I like mine golden brown (the bitterness from a burnt exterior puts me off), but Pete likes his slightly darker. Try this easy recipe a couple of times and decide how you prefer them!

Edit: I tried baking the recipe in mini muffin tins as Anna suggested below.  This batch also used lactose-free milk.  They worked brilliantly!  The mini canelés took 40 minutes in a 180C fan-forced oven (although it might be less, depending on your oven – start checking after 30 minutes).

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