How many of you have actually tried French madeleines? I have to admit, they taste very much like the popular South East Asian sponge cake snack “kueh bolu” (or “kuih bahulu”), probably because the ingredients used are similar. They’re even baked in little fluted moulds like madeleines are, though madeleines are distinctively shell-shaped while traditional kueh bolu look more like flowers (or super chubby starfish).
Anyway, I digress. Here’s a super easy recipe for classic madeleines, borrowed from Smitten Kitchen (who in turn adapted from Patisserie Lerch, via Paris Sweets), but with my own orange twist. Don’t they look positively gorgeous all baked and golden and lovingly dusted with vanilla-infused sugar? How can anyone resist these adorable little cakes? They’re probably not very good for your hips, but why not indulge once in awhile? :)
I baked these in a small madeleine pan that takes only 5 at a time. Never doing that again. Nope. Each batch takes over 10 minutes to bake, and with all the batter I had, I did about 6 or 7 batches. You do the math. I’m definitely buying a bigger pan next time! Don’t make the same mistake, guys.
In other news, I’ve just recently joined Bloglovin’ and it would be ultra fantastic if you guys followed me there. If you aren’t familiar with Bloglovin’, this is your chance to get into it! It’s a pretty neat way to follow ALL your favourite blogs on one single platform plus it makes it so much easier to check if any of your favourite bloggers have put up new posts!
Orange & Vanilla Madeleines
adapted from Smitten Kitchen’s classic madeleines.
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup caster sugar
Zest of 1 orange
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 tablespoons butter, melted
*I used Queen’s Vanilla Bean Dusting Sugar to sprinkle over the madeleines. You can also use regular icing sugar.
- In a small bowl, combine the flour and baking powder. Mix well, set aside.
- Thoroughly whisk the eggs and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until pale and thick, then beat in the orange zest and vanilla.
- Using a large rubber spatula, gently fold in the dry ingredients, followed by the melted butter. Take care not to over-mix the batter or the madeleines will turn out tough instead of tender.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic against the surface of the batter to create an airtight seal and prevent it from drying out. Place in the refrigerator to chill for at least 3 hours (or up to 2 days). A longer chilling time will help the madeleines to puff up in the oven.
- Preheat oven to 200°C. Generously grease and flour the indents of your madeleine pan, tapping out any excess.
- Spoon the batter evenly into the moulds, filling them almost to the top. Don’t worry about smoothing out the batter, the oven’s heat will spread it out during baking.
- Bake madeleines for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the madeleines are puffed and golden and slightly browned at the edges.
- Remove pan from oven and gently remove madeleines from the moulds. If you need to, gently run a butter knife around the edges of the madeleines to help ease them out. If they don’t come out easily, they may need a couple of extra minutes in the oven.
- Transfer madeleines to a wire rack to cool before sprinkling vanilla sugar over the tops.