Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Walima monthly challenge

Dear Readers, bloggers and non bloggers....

We are opening the door for a chance to join us and learn about the Arabic Food, and Middle Eastern Cuisine... You can now cook with us and even post your food photos as well.

We do monthly Challenges, we are going by Latin alphabetical order and choosing two recipes from every Arab country, one savoury and one dessert, we choose which one to cook , you can do both if you like, the posting is on the 30th of month, so if you are a non blogger and wish to
cook the challenge and post your photos, you can send me your photos by email before the end of the month to be able to post them on the Walima Arabia Blog.

for this month challenge which represent the Iraqi Cuisine please go to our http://www.walimaarabia.blogspot.com/ for the recipes..

Hoping to see your food photos soon..... !!!!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Fresh Fruit cakes - Upside down Plum Cake

During the Summer Season, I like to take advantage from the fresh fruits I can find in the market , I like to eating them fresh, and more enjoy baking them and highlighting their wonderful flavours.

Upside down fruit cake is one of our favourit cakes in the Summer and Plums are one of the fruits I really enjoy caramelizing and baking them. Specially if accompanied with Frangipan or toasted Almond and Amaretto liqueur.

Upside down plum cake using two kinds of plums & toasted almonds and amaretto liqueur

Baba Au Rum

The original form of the baba was similar to the babka, a tall cylindrical yeast cake. The name means 'old woman' or 'grandmother' in the Slavic languages, and has nothing to do with Ali Baba; babka is a diminutive of the same word.
The modern version "Baba au Rhum" (Rum Baba), with dried fruit and soaking in rum, was invented in
rue Montorgueil (Paris, France) in 1835 or before, both in name and in fact pretty much the original baba soaked in rum. Today, the word "Baba" in France and almost everywhere else outside eastern Europe usually refers specifically to the rum baba.
The original Baba was introduced into France in the 18th century via
Alsace and Lorraine. This is attributed to Stanislas, the exiled king of Poland . However, legends crediting of Stanislas with the innovation of the "Baba au Rhum" are certainly false, theories giving partial credit to Stanislas seem possible, though partially unlikely: the Larousse Gastronomique reports that Stanislas had the idea of soaking a dried Kugelhopf (a cake roughly similar to the baba and common in Alsace-Lorraine when he arrived there) or a baba with alcoholic spirit. Another version [3] is that when Stanislas brought back a baba from one of his voyages it had dried up. Nicolas Stohrer, one of his pâtissiers (or possibly just apprentice pâtissiers at the time), solved the problem by addition of adding Malaga wine, saffron, dried and fresh raisin and crême pâtissière. Courchamps states in 1839 that the descendants of Stanislas served the baba with a saucière containing sweet malaga wine mixed with one sixth of Tanaisie Licquor.
Nicolas Stohrer followed Stanislas' daughter
Maria Leszczyńska to Versailles as her pâtissier in 1725 when she married King Louis XV, and founded his Pâtisserie in Paris in 1730. One of his descendants allegedly had the idea of using rum in 1835. While he is believed to have done so on the fresh cakes (right out of the mold), it is a common practice today to let the baba dry a little so that it soaks up better. Later, the recipe was refined by mixing the Rum with aromatized sugar syrup.
In 1844 the Julien Brothers, Parisian pâtissiers, invented the "Savarin" which is strongly inspired by the "Baba au Rhum" but is soaked with a different alcoholic mixture and uses a circular (ring) cake mold instead of the simple round (cylindrical) form. The ring form is nowadays often associated with the Baba au Rhum as well, and the name "Savarin" is also sometimes given to the rum-soaked circular cake.
The baba was later brought to Naples by French cooks, and became a popular
Neapolitan specialty, under the name babà or babbà.
The pastry has appeared on US restaurant menus since 1899,
[4] if not earlier.

It has been a while since I made the Baba, and the day has come and I made a big batch of it, and since I didn't have the right baba molds i used ramekins and then parchment papers to extend the length and give room to the dough to rise taller. I even used the popover pans and they came perfect.

the sauce was a combination of fresh orange juice, and Golden Rum.
you can dip the baba in the warm sauce and they will double again when they soak the yummy syrup. Stuffing the baba is up to you , either with pastry cream of whipped cream, and you can use a pastry bag with a fine round tip inserted in the bottom of each baba and fill it with the cream, or you can add the whipped cream on top of the baba and serve with it nuts and dried fruits soaked in the same syrup...