Tag Archives: indulgence

Creole Bread and Butter pudding with rum sauce

This very decadent and irresistible recipe was given to me by my friend Marie-Lorraine who herself got it from a friend: the sort of word-of-mouth recipe that makes you salivate as soon as you hear about it… It is thought to have originated in New-Orleans but there are enough similar recipes in the UK for it to earn its place on this blog.

I used the stale brioche made the week before, which was lucky timing, but you can use any stale sandwich bread or a bought brioche. The trick is to cover the slices with the liquid and let it steep for a while- which I sadly did not have time to do!

Comfort food at its best...

Comfort food at its best…

Ingredients list:

  • Eggs,2
  • Caster sugar, 150g
  • Whipping cream, 230ml
  • Full fat milk, 700ml
  • Butter, 100g
  • Vanilla extract, 1 drop
  • Bitter almond extract, 1 drop
  • Currants raisins, ½ cup or small handful
  • Nutmeg, 1 tsp
  • Stale white bread or brioche, 225g or about

First weigh the bread and cut it up in thick slices.

In a bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, milk, cream, butter, vanilla and almond extract, currants and nutmeg. Whisk to blend well.

Stuff the slices into the bowl and let them steep in ideally for 30 minutes or more. Or you can also just dip each slice into the bowl, then arrange them snuggly and pour the rest over. Once you have arranged your slices  in a buttered dish, such as a rectangular pyrex or gratin dish, add more milk if necessary to cover it well and press down with a fork to absorb most of the liquid.

They should all fit tightly and without leaving any space.

Reserve in the fridge for a few hours or a night.

Put the dish in a hot oven at 160º C.

Bake until the top is golden so about 30/40 minutes. Let too cool down then dust some icing sugar on top before serving. Given the sugar content, this is obviously optional but looks good!

Prepare the sauce.

Ingredients list for the sauce:

  • Sugar, 200g
  • Butter, 60g
  • Whipping cream or creme fraiche, 45ml
  • Egg yolk, 1
  • Rum (or brandy) 60ml

In a thick bottomed saucepan, combine the sugar, butter, cream and place over the hob to bubble until it is all melted. Remove from the hob. Whisk the yolk and add it to the mix. Stir in your favourite rum!

Serve the bread and butter pudding warm in shallow cups or bowls with a side helping of the sauce. It is a cross between French toast and a spoon cake: moist and regressive… Enjoy, it’s winter…IMG_5346


Rum baba

This is a throw-back to the Seventies! Retro cakes after vintage clothes are making a comeback in our kitchen – Rachel Khoo style – but I won’t complain because I loved rum baba as a child and I had not had one since… until I started making my own this month.

This recipe is surprisingly fool-proof but I won’t lie: it will take you a whole afternoon – only make it for people you love. Love wants time. That’s my measure of affection !

Ingredients list

  • Milk (warm), 100ml
  • Fast action yeast, 1 1/2 teaspoon
  • Strong white flour (type00), 150g
  • Egg, 1 plus 1 yolk
  • Caster sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoon
  • Fine salt, a pinch
  • Butter, 50g

For the syrup

  • Brown sugar 600g
  • Water 500ml
  • Lemon peel
  • ½ vanilla pod
  • Dark rum, 2 Tbsp plus more to serve

Warm the bowl of you mixer with boiling water or if using a Thermomix, set it the temperature at 50 degrees.

Add the warm milk, yeast and 50g of flour.

Stir well and then leave for 15 min until it becomes foamy. It is ideal in the thermomix because you can set it on speed 1 and at 50 degrees and leave the dough to make its magic.

This is a bread recipe rather than a cake mix so the proving is really important and you need good fresh yeast powder. Always check the best before date.

Add the remaining flour, egg and yolk, sugar and salt to the mix and beat at top speed for 2 minutes. Then add the diced, cold butter and beat again for 2 minutes.

Cover and leave to rise for 45 minutes. I leave it in the warm Thermomix bowl and it pretty much should double in volume.

Brush the baba or savarins tins with oil. You can also use muffins tins or mini pudding pans. Put the batter into a jug and half-fill each mould. Cover and reserve.

While they rise – and they will!- you can make the syrup by mixing all the ingredients in a large saucepan and letting it bubble away until it has reduced a bit. Usually no less than 5 or 8 minutes. Add the rum.

Let it cool.

Meanwhile, the babas have risen just above the rim of their tins. If not, just leave them a little longer.

Put in a warm oven (170) on fan for 20 minutes.

Take them out, leave them to cool a bit then assemble the pudding by putting the babas in a deep dish and soaking them with the rum syrup. Spoon the syrup on to cover them well.

Drain the baba and slice it in two halves. Put some more syrup in the centre of both halves if necessary and a nice drop of dark rum. Reserve in a cool place until ready to serve.

Serve them with whipped cream and some fresh, seasonal fruit. My whipped cream was slightly minty and I choose kiwi slices this time. Kiwi is a good fruit for dessert because it has little flavour of its own but a pleasant acidity to offset any sweet pudding ; and rum babas are very sweet indeed…

This recipe is taken with a few twists from Dan Lepard’s new book  Short and Sweet, the best of home baking.

My brioche “all butter”

This is NOT a quick recipe: hence I offer it for the week-end…

…But if you have never eaten homemade brioche, I promise you are in for a treat. Every time I make it, I glow in “domestic goddess” pride because somehow my guests are more touched by that offer than that of any cake or pudding. The truth is, I only make it on very special occasions because it does take 24h and I do have a life, you know… But really, it is not complicated at all and time spent on their behalf is the best gift you can bestow on your friends. At least, it is the one gift I appreciate most of all. Somebody gives me some time, or spends time doing something for me, and I go all wobbly with gratitude!

Ingredients list:

  • Flour, 350g (light and fine such as 00 type)
  • Salt 1 tsp
  • Raising yeast, 1tsp (Dry quick yeast type is fine) or if using fresh yeast, 1 thistle
  • Milk, warm and whole, 60ml
  • Eggs, 3 beaten lightly
  • Soften butter, 175g
  • Sugar, 2 tbsp
  • 1      extra Yolk to brush on tops

Take note that the butter must be soft and the eggs very fresh.

Mix the yeast into the warm milk and then pour into the flour while turning. Add the beaten eggs and salt.

Beat the dough a few minutes with a wooden spoon.

Cream the sugar with the butter and mix into the dough.

Cover the bowl with cling-film and leave to rise for 1 or 2 hours.

Knead into the bowl for a few minutes and then leave again to rise for the night or a good few hours of the day.

On the day, prepare and oil the brioche, or muffins tray, or one single pan.

Take the sticky dough out onto a floured surface and knead vigorously. Add a little flour to prevent sticking to your hands but do work quickly and with floured cold hands so it does not have time to glue your fingers together! The dough must be light and elastic.

Shape a little ball and drop it in each pan and then a smaller one on top. Brush with the yolk.

Leave for ½ hour at least in the pans, in a warm place in the kitchen.

When it has pumped up a little, put into a warm oven for 10min at 230 then lower to 180 for another 15 minutes.

I serve those little brioche with foie gras as starters or with a “fricassée” of mushrooms. But they are also delicious with butter and jam, anytime of the day. For the photo, I put whipped cream and Morello cherry jam inside and this was particularly groovy…

Chocolate cake from a faraway island

Chocolate cake is a weakness I try to keep in check but every so often, I give into it… This sunday I had all the children coming back for tea, so I baked this very rich and creamy chocolate recipe that a dear friend of my mother used to bake for us in the island of Martinique. I kept fond memories of this cake and I was very excited to get the recipe!

Some time I feel more like an archivist than a cook and maybe that is what food blogging is really about… The French say that when someone dies, it is a library that goes into flame, so rescuing some of the recipes that were in this “library” might seem trivial to some but it is essential to me. This is what transmission and passing on is all about, is it not?

Ingredients list: This makes a very large cake for sharing at a birthday party for example or you could divide the quantities if you are not feeding the 5000.

  • Eggs, 10
  • Sugar, 500g
  • Flour, 300g (00 grade or fine is best)
  • Dark cooking chocolate, 400g
  • Butter, 330g
  • Pinch of bicarbonate of soda
  • Zeste of one orange

Note: Best to use the butter at room temperature if you can.

First you whip the sugar and the eggs together in a big bowl.

Then let the chocolate melt in a warm oven until very soft. Add the soften butter into it.

Raise the oven to 170 celsius.

Add the egg and sugar mix to the chocolate and beat with a wooden spoon. Zest the orange and add that in. Add the flour with a pinch of bicarbonate of soda.

Pour into a large round cake tin and bake at 170 for about 35 to 40 minutes.

The cake will still be very soft on top and a bit wobbly when it comes out but do not worry. It will set a little as it cools ; you want it very creamy inside!

The orange zest is a true stroke of genius and lingers long in your mouth after the chocolate has receded…

Gâteau aux amandes et citron – Publié en VF sur “750 grammes”

Je vous livre ici en VF une recette délicieuse faite ce week-end et que le site 750Grammes vient de publier, accompagnée d’une interview de votre humble servante. Il s’agit d’un gâteau léger comme une plume, sans un gramme de gluten et surtout qui infusera dans votre cuisine un parfum de vergers siciliens à faire pleurer un mafieux!


Pour 6 personnes

  • 3 gros citrons
  • 175g de sucre
  • 4 oeufs
  • 175g de poudre d’amandes
  • ¼ de c à c de bicarbonate de soude

Proposé par : Diane du blog Travels around my kitchen> Toutes ses recettes> Derniers commentaires


1/Faire cuire les citrons entiers dans 15 cl d’eau et couverts, pendant 1 heure minimum. Prenez des citrons non cirés et à la peau fine.

2/Les ouvrir et enlever les pépins. Passer le tout au mixeur et rajouter un peu d’eau si nécessaire: vous devez obtenir une bouillie fine. Passer au chinois ou par la grille fine du presse-purée.

3/Mélanger le sucre et les œufs entiers. Faire blanchir le mix en fouettant. Ajouter la poudre d’amandes et la levure. Ajouter la purée de citrons.Verser dans 6 petits moules ou dans un moule à manquer.

4/Mettre au four thermostat 180° pendant 30-35 minutes.

via Recette – Gâteau au citron et amandes – Proposée par 750 grammes.

For the English version of a similar cake , albeit in a clementine flavour instead of lemon, go to my archive!