I first discovered my love of madeleines when I moved to Melbourne, I visited Cumulus Inc on Flinders Lane which happens to be the home of some of the best madeleines in town – filled with lemon curd for even extra decadence.
These elegant French tea cakes are super light and fluffy – with an almost sponge like consistency. They have a distinctive scallop shell appearance from being baked in a special embossed scalloped shell pan. So if you don’t have a madeleine tray go down to your local cookware store and buy one now!
This recipe is based on the classic lemon-scented madeleine but many varieties can be used. You can add rose-water, lavender and even chocolate chips to give the recipe a modern twist.
Once you master the method, madeleines are dead easy to make. However, the mixture (based on génoise cake batter) can be temperamental – and if overmixed will result in heavier madeleines with a more biscuit like consistency. Be careful to measure the ingredients on an electric scale and not overwork the mixture.
These scalloped beauties are the perfect treat for an afternoon cuppa. They are best served fresh from the oven and slightly cooled.
- 2 eggs
- 165g caster sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind
- 150g plain flour, sifted
- 185g unsalted butter, clarified
- sifted icing sugar, to dust
1. To clarify the butter, place in a saucepan and melt slowly. When the butter is clear remove from the heat, stand for a few minutes and pour the clear butter into a cup, leaving the sediments in the pan. Cool. This can also be done in the microwave
2. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Grease the madeleine tins and dust them with flour.
3. Beat the eggs and sugar until thick and mousse-like using a hand whisk and a bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water, or a very good electric mixer. Remove from the heat (if using that method) and continue to beat until cooled. Tip: the electric mixer technique is a lot easier!
4. Add the lemon rind. Fold in the flour and then the cooled butter, mixing only until everything is blended. A metal spoon or spatula is best for this job. Take care not to overwork the mixture at this point and don’t allow the butter to sink to the bottom of the bowl.
5. Spoon the mixture into the prepared madeleine tins. Bake large madeleines for 9 minutes and small madeleines for 6–7 minutes or until pale golden.
6.Let stand for 1–2 minutes before removing from the tins. Repeat until all the mixture is used. Dust with icing sugar while still warm.
Recipe Source Margaret Fulton