Desserts Canneles - French pastries on a plate

Published on March 15th, 2015 | by Gareth


French Canneles

Autumn is once again here, though that just means the average temperature in Sydney, drops from 35 to 25 degrees. Looking back over the last six months, it’s been a period of firsts for me. I’ve become a father, I’ve struck a reasonable work life balance, and I’ve experienced sleep depravation ‘torture’ at the hands of Lord Poo Farty.

I also made canneles for the first time. Canneles are a delicate, fluffy, French pastry that is speciality of the Bordeaux region. Individual baked custard morsels that have a caramelised outer crust and a soft centre.  They taste morishly good and I’ve discovered one, is seldom enough.

If brown is the new black, then canneles are the new éclair. Love or hate them, (I love them), the French know how to make the best posh cake.

The recipe is from Rachel Khoo – My French Kitchen, my new favourite cook.

The batter mix is pretty simple, but the baking party is trickier. For a start sourcing the correct mould was a challenge in itself. Traditionally, they are baked in a scalloped copper moulds, which after searching long and hard, Nina found. Slight snag, they were about $200 (vintage you see). More searching on Amazon produced a silicon mould.

One problem that I experienced was, that the crust didn’t come out very crusty. I suspect the humid conditions were partially to blame.  Tasted fantastic though. I also discovered that brushing the inside of the moulds with a mix of melted butter and beeswax helps get the colour right. Apparently the beeswax trick is commonly used in France. How do people discover things like this to begin with?

Prep time: 15 minutes
Resting time: 48 hours
Cooking time: 1½ hours
Equipment: Cannele moulds (you could possibly use a deep muffin tin), saucepan, sieve and a large jug


  • 500ml full fat milk (what did you expect, it’s a French recipe)
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 100g plain flour
  • 240g icing sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 60ml dark rum


  • Heat the milk and butter in a saucepan, along with the vanilla pod, (make an incision along the length of the vanilla pod and scrape the seeds into the milk first).
  • Bring to the boil, and then set aside to infuse.
  • Lightly beat the eggs and egg yolk in a bowl.
  • Sieve the salt, flour and icing sugar into a different bowl.
  • Remove the vanilla pod from the milk (but don’t ditch it just yet) and pour the milk into the beaten egg.
  • Stir the egg and milk together then slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. Stir slowly until you have batter.
  • Strain the batter through a sieve to remove any lumps.  Stir in the rum and add the vanilla pod. Cover with plastic food wrap and chill in the fridge for 2 days, stirring a couple of times.
  • To cook the cannel, you will need your oven super hot. Preheat to 240 degrees.
  • Heat the silicon mould in the oven for 2-3 minutes, then pour in the batter so it’s 4/5 full. This is important, as they will expand.
  • Bake for 15 minutes then reduce the temperature to 190. Bake for an hour then remove from oven. Remove the canneles from the moulds and cool on a wire rack. This is the part where the crust forms, or not in my case.

Tea time treat


About the Author

Englishman in Sydney loves a whisky, pies and all things savoury. Digital Marketer by day, cook the rest of the time. Amateur writer, photographer & aspiring anthropologists.

3 Responses to French Canneles

  1. I adore canneles! I wish more bakeries sold them. Well done on your first efforts making them – they look great!

  2. Pingback: Smoky pork and beans | Humble Crumble

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