Yeah, this is kind of like a crème caramel but better. The dessert Rožata is unique to Dubrovnik but you can find it all along the southern Dalmatian coast, and the one thing that sets it apart from other baked custard desserts or the classic crème caramel is the addition of Ružolin. Ružolin is a brandy made from mascerated rose petals and it’s hard to find in Sydney – bar making it yourself (and how many roses would you need?), impossible to find.
You can buy it direct from a Dalmatian company called Natura Dalmatia, but geez I really just wanted to try making it (again) and so (as loads of other recipes do) substituted Ružolin for rosewater and rum.
I’m not going to lie to you, I found this recipe hard to make. And this was my third time round. Either the custard didn’t bake properly or it wouldn’t drop out of its ramekin (a sloppy mess) or something! But third time, luckily…it worked. Below is the recipe that worked and I recommend it. Why? Because of the straining component, it works so much better when the custard is strained. Here we go…
- 150 g caster sugar (for the caramel)
- 500 ml milk
- 100 g caster sugar
- One (1) tsp vanilla paste
- One (1) tsp rosewater
- One (1) tsp rum
- Six (6) eggs
- Zest of one lemon
- Rose petals or rose buds (for decoration)
- Ramekins and muslin cloth
- Start with the caramel. Put the 150g of sugar into a saucepan on low heat. Let it dissolve without stirring and when it turns a light golden brown transfer into one large or four small ramekins. You have to work really fast here, so if you have someone around to help you, use them! Swirl the caramel up the sides of the ramekins before it sets into a rock solid toffee. Then let them cool. Note: Use ceramic moulds and ramekins. Anything that can be put in the oven.
- For the custard, heat the oven to 160 C. Put the milk, vanilla and sugar into a saucepan and over low heat, warm until the sugar dissolves. Do not let it simmer. Take it off the heat and let it cool.
- Beat the eggs and combine with rum, rosewater and zest. Once the milk has cooled, whisk the egg mixture into the milk mixture. Whisk gently until combined.
- Strain the mixture through a muslin cloth or fine sieve.
- Place the caramel ramekins into a large baking dish and pour the custard mixture into each.
- Pour boiling water into the baking dish, making sure the water comes to where the custard ends.
- Bake for 30 minutes, or when the custards have cooked through and are slightly golden on top. Take the ramekins out of the dish and let cool. Refrigerate overnight.
- To serve, invert onto a plate, and add some edible rose buds or petals for decoration. If the rožata doesn’t fall out of the ramekins – run a knife along the edge of each ramekin and jiggle when inverting – that should help!
Let me know if you tried this Rožata and what you thought?
Dobar Tek! Zivjeli! (Bon Appetit! Cheers and let’s live!)