This recipe comes from Alsace. This region, in north-East of France, is famous for their architecture like the Palais Rohan, but also for their cuisine, which incorporates some Germanic traditions being that the town borders Germany.
Their culinary specialties include Cervelas, Tarte flambée, Choucroute (Sauerkraut) and Baeckeoffe, a mutton, beef and pork stew. They have one of the richest cuisines in France and are well know for serving big portions.
The recipe I am sharing with you today is called a Kouglof, a cake containing yeast, raisins, rum, & almonds. It has a distinctive shape because of the special mold it is cooked in, and you’ll find variations of this delicious cake in Germany and Austria. Once cooked, the Kouglof is soaked in a delicious vanilla and rum flavoured syrup that makes this dessert even more irresistible. To add a festive twist to this traditional recipe, I have chosen to pair it with a ginger bread crème anglaise.
If you are looking for a wine to match this delicious dessert, I highly recommend a Domaine Bertrand-Bergé Rivesaltes Ambré from www.airoldifinewines.com.au
Kouglof with a Ginger Bread Crème Anglaise:
For The Kouglof:
- 400g bakers flour
- 35 fresh yeast
- 70g caster sugar
- 150g free range eggs
- 50g milk
- 150 salted butter
- 5g salt
- Warm up the milk and dilute the yeast into it.
- In an electric mixer, like a Kitchen Aid for example and equipped with the hook attachment, place the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl and mix for a couple of minutes.
- Add the yeast mixture, while mixing on medium speed, add the eggs one at a time and whisk on high speed until the dough detach itself from the sides.
- Slowly add the soft butter and mix until it is all incorporated, cover with cling film and place the bowl in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size.
- Preheat the oven at 180 degrees Celsius and line the mold with soft butter and place an almond in each of the small holes of the mold.
- Mix the dough with the hook attachment on medium speed and add the raisins, mix until well combined.
- Place the dough in the mold to about ¾ , leave to proof until it has reached the top. Brush the top with an egg yolk and bake for 25-30 minutes depending on your oven.
- Unmould the Kouglof and soak it, using a pastry brush, with the syrup.
For the syrup:
- 1L water
- 1 orange zest
- 1 lemon zest
- 400g caster sugar
- 50ml dark rum
- 1 vanilla pod, split
- 500ml water
- 100 g raisin
- Warm up 1 liter of water then add the rum, place the raisins or currants in the liquid for 30 minutes then strain. This process will avoid that the raisins fall at the bottom of the mold while cooking.
- Bring 500ml of water, orange zest, lemon zest and vanilla to the boil, then turn the heat of and add the rum.
For the Crème Anglaise:
- 500ml full fat milk
- 100g caster sugar
- 4 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger powder
- ¼ teaspoon cloves
- 1 teaspoon 5 spice
- Bring the milk and spices to the boil.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk the yolks and sugar together. Pour the hot milk over the top and whisk until all the ingredients are dissolved.
- Pour the mix back in the pot and cook on medium heat using a spatula to stir. Once the thin layer of foam at the top disappear, check the cream by lifting the spatula out and drawing a line with your finger, if the line remains it means that the anglaise is ready.
- Pour the crème anglaise in a clean bowl and refrigerate.