Baba like in Monte Carlo

Jean-Philippe Blondet

Jean-Philippe Blondet

17th October 2017
Jean-Philippe Blondet

Baba like in Monte Carlo

This is my recipe for rum baba (baba au rhum) called Baba like in Monte Carlo. This dish is on our A La Carte menu at our three Michelin starred restaurant, Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester.
(Photography by Pierre Monetta)


  • Baba:
  • 130g all-purpose flour (T55)
  • 1g salt
  • 45g chilled butter (unsalted)
  • 6g yeast
  • 6g lavender honey
  • 180g whole eggs
  • Syrup:
  • 3L water
  • 1200g sugar
  • Zest of 3 lemons
  • Zest of 3 oranges
  • 1 ½ vanilla pods
  • Apricot Glaze (apricot jam can substitute, but must be strained after heating):
  • 500g apricot pulp
  • 266ml syrup
  • 12g pectin NH
  • 400g caster sugar
  • 200g glucose (syrup)
  • 25g lemon juice
  • Garnish:
  • 50g apricot glaze
  • Aged rum – according to your preference
  • Vanilla cream:
  • 1L whipping cream
  • 90g icing sugar
  • ½ vanilla pod (seeds only)


Preparation of the Syrup:
Combine water, sugar, lemon zest, orange zest, and vanilla pod in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
After boiling, cool to 45°C.
Preparation of the Apricot Glaze:
In a saucepan, combine all the ingredients and bring to a boil.
Boil the glaze for 2 minutes, while constantly stirring to prevent the pectin from burning on the bottom of the pan.
Set aside to cool.
Preparation of the Babas:
In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt, butter, honey, and yeast and knead the dough adding the eggs a little at a time.
When ready, the dough should easily come away from the sides of the bowl and be elastic and smooth.
Tip the dough out onto a lightly oiled baking tray, and spread it out to the edges.
Allow the dough to rest in a refrigerator uncovered for 10-15 minutes.
Once sufficiently rested, fill the dough into a piping bag (no tip needed).
Lightly oil the dariole moulds with non-flavoured oil.
With the aid of the piping bag, fill the dough (30g each) into the lightly oiled dariole moulds.
Tap the base of the moulds onto a work surface to expel any air bubbles, and with lightly oiled fingers clean the edges of the mould.
Lightly cover the filled moulds with oiled plastic wrap and set the filled moulds aside at room temperature until the dough rises almost to the top of the moulds.
Once sufficiently risen, remove the plastic film and leave uncovered for another 10 minutes in order to allow the tops of the babas to form a thin skin.
Bake the baba in an oven at 180°C for 7 minutes, then turn the tray and continue to bake for an additional 5 minutes.
(Cooking times may vary dependent upon the oven, and a golden colour is a good indicator in determining if the baba has finished baking.)
When the time is done, and the babas are golden in colour, remove them from the oven, and take them out of the moulds.
Place the baked baba onto a rack to cool completely.
Once sufficiently cooled, soak the baba head-first for a minimum of 30 minutes in the lukewarm (50°C) syrup, allowing them to absorb the syrup and swell.
Drain the baba on a rack for 20 minutes.
Once sufficiently drained, using a pastry brush, coat the baba with the apricot glaze and keep uncovered at room temperature to dry for 15 minutes.
Preparation of the Vanilla Cream:
In a bowl, combine the cream, icing sugar, and vanilla bean seeds, and whisk. The consistency will be reached just before the stage when the cream would form soft peaks.
Place the baba into a dessert dish.
Cut the baba into 2 halves with a knife and drizzle rum onto the fluffy centres of each halve.
Top the baba halves with the vanilla cream and enjoy.

In these challenging times…

The Staff Canteen team are taking a different approach to keeping our website independent and delivering content free from commercial influence. Our Editorial team have a critical role to play in informing and supporting our audience in a balanced way. We would never put up a paywall and restrict access – The Staff Canteen is open to all and we want to keep bringing you the content you want; more from younger chefs, more on mental health, more tips and industry knowledge, more recipes and more videos. We need your support right now, more than ever, to keep The Staff Canteen active. Without your financial contributions this would not be possible.

Over the last 12 years, The Staff Canteen has built what has become the go-to platform for chefs and hospitality professionals. As members and visitors, your daily support has made The Staff Canteen what it is today. Our features and videos from the world’s biggest name chefs are something we are proud of. We have over 500,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social channels, each connecting with chefs across the world. Our editorial and social media team are creating and delivering engaging content every day, to support you and the whole sector - we want to do more for you.

A single coffee is more than £2, a beer is £4.50 and a large glass of wine can be £6 or more.

Support The Staff Canteen from as little as £1 today. Thank you.