Pastry expert Niko Triantafillou of Dessert Buzz has made creating the perfect canelé one of his life quests. His recipe is the real deal: crunchy and caramelized to a deep mahogany brown on the outside, moist and custardy within, and deeply perfumed with dark rum and vanilla bean.
Though Niko bakes his canelés in traditional copper molds lined with melted beeswax and clarified butter, we have adapted his method to use inexpensive silicone molds and nonstick cooking spray for ease and thrift. But if you are ready to take the plunge and buy a pricey set of copper molds, then coat the insides with a paper-thin layer of "white oil" (equal parts beeswax and clarified butter), and be sure to chill them thoroughly in the freezer before filling with batter and baking atop a pizza stone.
Practice makes perfect with these tricky little pastries, so don’t worry if your first couple of batches aren’t flawless. Give your batter plenty of time to rest in the fridge, and don’t rush the baking.