honey rum cake

Parisian Honey Rum Cake

In Paris, honey rum cake is served in a variety of presentations. One bistro serves the cake with an entire bottle of rum, which you then pour into the desired amount. Another restaurant fills its rum cake recipe with jelly (as in jelly donuts). One of my favorite presentations involves a puddle of custard that serves as a pillow for the fantastic and moist rum cake that sits on top. There's no shortage of options for devouring this delicious cake. One thing is for sure, though - no matter how it's served, Parisian honey rum cake is a must-try for anyone with a love of desserts.

parisian honey rum cake

History of rum cake

As with many beloved dishes, the origins of rum cake can be traced back to early settlers who arrived in the Caribbean. These settlers brought with them the recipe for steamed pudding, a complicated dish that was made famous before the 16th century in the United Kingdom. To honor this beloved dessert, the settlers created their own version of steamed pudding by adding rum to the recipe. And thus, rum cake was born. Today, it's still a popular dessert in the Caribbean and has spread worldwide, particularly in Paris where it's served in various creative ways.

Making a honey rum cake, gathering all of the necessary ingredients.

Move over fruit cake

Today, this recipe is considered old-school. My friend's grandmother made it with boxed ingredients (Duncan Hines) at Christmas each year. I notice that rum cake comes around each year in different forms, especially in the Italian markets at holiday time. We've replaced refined sugar with honey (for the most part) to make this special.

When making this honey rum cake recipe, you can use a muffin tin or a multi-mini bundt pan and make a bunch of mini cakes, a bread pan, or a traditional bundt pan. Serve with whipped cream, ice cream, fresh fruit, berries, or dried fruit with a bit of honey drizzled on top.

bee inspired gifts on holiday set

Spice up this honey rum cake recipe

Although Parisian honey rum cake is delicious on its own, there are plenty of ways to make this cake even better. In fact, we encourage you to play with our recipe and make it your own! Here are some suggestions:

  1. Add chopped apples, like we do in our apple cake, to the cake batter before baking to add a fruity twist
  2. Fold in some chocolate chips to make it even richer
  3. Replace the raisins or cherries with a different dried fruit, such as apricots or cranberries.
  4. Use our honey strawberry jam to stuff the cake and make a mouthwatering surprise inside.
  5. Fill the center of the cake with finely chopped candied nuts of your choice to add a crunchy texture.

How to Make Rum Cake

  1. Scald the milk. Remove from heat and stir in the butter. Set aside.
  2. Sprinkle yeast into lukewarm water. Stir. Set aside ’til foamy (about 5 minutes).
  3. Lightly beat egg yolks, whole egg, and sugar together. Add cooled milk and yeast mixture, then stir in the lemon zest, and dried fruit in rum and flour.
  4. Place dough in an oiled bowl and turn the dough to coat it. Cover and allow to rise, covered, in a warm, dry place until doubled in size (about an hour).
  5. Stir the dough and spoon it into buttered or nonstick muffin tins, filling cups two-thirds full.
  6. Allow to rise in a warm place until the dough reaches the tops of the cups, about 30 minutes.
  7. While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  8. Bake the cake for 15-20 minutes, until golden and risen to a smooth round shape.
  9. While baking, make the syrup by boiling honey, sugar, water, and a cinnamon stick in a small, heavy saucepan until reduced to about 1/2 cup.
  10. Remove from heat and stir in the almond or vanilla extract. Remove the cinnamon stick and set aside.
  11. Unfold the cake and transfer it to a shallow pan. Prick the bottom with a fork and pour hot syrup over the cake.
  12. Baste the cake with the remaining syrup as it cools.
  13. Serve with a garnish and artisan tea of your choice.

Parisian honey rum cake is a classic dessert that has stood the test of time for good reason. Its rich, moist texture, paired with the sweetness of honey and the warmth of spiced rum, make it the perfect treat for any occasion. Whether you prefer it served with custard or jam, or simply on its own, one thing is clear - this dessert is not to be missed. So next time you're in Paris, be sure to indulge in a slice (or two) of this delicious honey rum cake, and treat your taste buds to a truly special experience.

This honey rum cake recipe is adapted from The Vegetarian Bistro cookbook by Marlena Spieler.

honey rum cake tall pin

Rum cake, or what we make, honey rum cake is a cross between a sponge cake, bread pudding and a bundt cake. Depending on who makes it, it can be filled with rum, jelly (like a donut) or custard.

Where rum cake is most popular today, and where many people buy mail-order rum cake is from the caribbean. However, the origins of rum cake are from "steamed pudding" which comes from the United Kingdom. Steamed pudding fell out of favor with many ametuer cooks because it was too much of a hassle. Our honey rum cake recipe is loaded with rum and makes for an amazing holiday treat.