Monday, July 23, 2007

Madeleines

I finally got to taste the madeleines, that were once made famous by french author Marcel Proust in his novel Remembrance of Things Past or, in a more recent translation, In Search of Lost Time. He describes the cake, as he dipped it into a cup of tea and how it triggered his childhoold memories. And if Proust immortalized madeleines, food blogs popularized them more than ever! The delicate shell shapes reveal cakelike cookies with great flavor, that are so easy to make and what I like best about them: they are lactose free. And speaking of memories, I hope that my children will have fond memories of their childhood with images of mom and dad cooking, our kitchen table conversations, and little things like a cake coming out of the oven, or one asking if it is Sunday school day or regular school day... Oh all the fun we have together!

Madeleines
4 oz./120 g (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 large eggs
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh orange zest
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt

For icing:
7 ounces high quality bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

Instructions:
1. Beat the eggs and sugar in a large bowl until tripled in volume and a thick ribbon is formed when the beaters are lifted. Stir in the orange juice and zest.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt until well blended. In alternate turns, fold the flour mixture and cooled butter into the beaten eggs, mixing well after each addition.

3. Cover and refrigerate for 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 375° F/190° C and grease two 12-mold madeleine pans. Dust the molds with flour and pour out the excess. Drop the batter by the tablespoonful into the center of each prepared mold. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the edges are golden brown and centers spring back when lightly touched.

4. Remove the pans from the oven and firmly tap each pan to release the madeleines. Transfer to wire racks to cool. Line two baking sheets with waxed paper and place wire racks in pans.

5. Place chocolate in small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on medium (50% power) for 1 minute. Stir. Microwave 30 seconds more or until chocolate is softened. Stir until smooth.

6. Dip each madeleine into melted chocolate, coating bottom third of madeleine. Shake off excess chocolate and place on wire rack. Repeat with remaining madeleines. Let dipped madeleines stand at room temperature for 1-2 hours or until chocolate is set.

Recipe adapted from the kitchen of Diana.

More ideas:

- You can use fresh lime juice and lime zest instead of orange.
- Add 3 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder to the batter and enjoy some chocolate madeleines!
- The first time I baked them, I forgot to refrigerate the batter, but they turned out wonderful anyway!

10 comments:

Val said...

I've always liked the look of madeleines, and your recipe is tempting, but to make them and get them to look like that, I'd need to buy a madeleine tin. I try to avoid getting new gadgets/equipment that I won't necessarily use that often. Do you think they'd work in a friand tin (a gadget I did buy and use pretty frequently).

Patricia Scarpin said...

Cris, these are so lovely!
The chocolate details is wonderful!

JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

Those look beautiful! What cute phtots! Is that your son?

East Meets West Kitchen said...

Lovely madeleines, and I like the added chocolate. You have inspired me to get some medeleine molds too! :)

Terry B said...

Orange and chocolate together is one of those perfect flavor combinations! Beautiful photos too.

Cris said...

I have used this madeleine recipe to make a cake, and it turned out great! So, I think the friand pans would make terrific muffins!

Pam said...

Those are beautiful. Really pretty. I think I need a madeleine tin now!

Kristen said...

Beautiful!
I love the adorable photo up there. So sweet!

Abby said...

Oh man those look good! So delicate and tasty ... I'd love one right now!

Jeena said...

I love this recipe the pictures look lovely. They look so good already but then dipped in chocolate too!! Nice post. :)