These fluted confections are the official dessert of the Bordeaux region of France. The interior of canelés is like a lovely, creamy custard that is rich with both vanilla and rum. The trick to success, IMHO, with making canelés is using Copper Molds lined with beeswax and butter. That’s how you get the luxurious color, shine and crisp shell.
You can also use silicone molds, which don’t achieve quite the same texture, but are still excellent and totally worth making. Not to mention much less expensive and easier to find.
The latest batch I made was from The Fearless Baker by Erin Jeanne McDowell. Erin is a trained pastry chef and her recipes represent her knowledge and love for the craft. A cookbook should be lovely and inspiring, but the recipes need to work to gain my respect. She has delivered all of it and it brings me great joy to see someone elevating the art of pastry as she does.
The crêpe-like batter is super simple to make, but the batter requires a day of rest, before baking, so plan ahead. The outcome is delicious and sometimes the best things in life are worth waiting for.
Canelés de Bordeaux
(click here for the recipe) from The Fearless Baker: Simple Secrets for Baking Like a Pro by Erin Jeanne McDowell
In the post on Food52 she will walk you through using the silicone molds. Below are my instructions for preparing and using the copper molds.
Makes 1 dozen 2-inch canelés – I only have six Canele 2-Inch Molds, because they’re rather expensive, so I bake them in two batches.
Coating for the molds:
1/2 ounce/15g beeswax
1/2 ounce/1 tablespoon/15g unsalted butter
On baking day:
Place the canelés molds on a baking tray in a 425°F oven for about 5 minutes. You want to heat the molds so that the beeswax/butter mixture won’t get too thick when you brush it on.
In a small pan heat the beeswax and butter over medium low heat. The beeswax is highly flammable so you want to make sure you are careful and only heat until melted and then remove from heat.
Take the molds out of the oven and carefully brush the insides with the melted beeswax mixture. Tongs and oven mitts will be helpful.
Once you brush them with the beeswax, place the molds upside down on a cooling rack that is set over parchment. If the mixture is not liquid, but sticks to the mold, place back in the oven. Once the wax melts, remove from oven and flip them upside down. You want the excess beeswax to drip out and you don’t want to get it all over your counter.
Unmold the canelés by flipping them upside down and tapping them on the baking sheet. They should slip right out. If they are not dark on the tops then work them back into the molds and put them back in the oven.