I had always wanted to bake these French delights but had never come across the moulds in our city. Yesterday as I went to pick up a bundt tin from a shop that I frequent I was happy to see madeleine tins and one came home with me. A new baking tin and no baking? That would have been so wrong!! The recipe that I picked from the internet is by Rebecca Franklin, a French food expert. Instead of orange zest I used lemon zest in my cakes. And I did the mixing by hand so there are minor adaptations in the recipe.

Madeleines are small sponge cakes made in shell-shaped moulds. They are said to have originated in Commercy and Liverdun, two communes of the Lorraine region in north-eastern France. Traditional cakes use finely ground nuts like almonds but the other variation uses lemon zest.

1/2 cup butter, melted
2/3 cup fine sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp lemon zest
3 large eggs
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tbs icing sugar

Sieve the flour with the baking powder and keep aside.
Cream the butter and fine sugar till the mixture becomes light and fluffy.
Add the eggs one by one till well-combined and the mixture looks lighter in colour.
Gently fold in the flour/baking powder into the egg mixture.
Once the batter is smooth, cover it and keep it in the refrigerator for two hours.
Grease the madeleine moulds really well so that you won’t need to make any effort in getting them out later.
Preheat the oven to 180C.
Spoon the mixture to the “shells” and bake for about 13-15 minutes until they are puffed and golden brown.
Cool the cakes on a wire rack and dust them with icing sugar. 
Madeleines are best eaten warm/on the day they are made.

I had bought only one pan so I made them in two batches. This recipe makes 12 madeleines.

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