Craving Madeleines a Sweet French Fix in Aix-en-Provence
Susan Gish may not have a long history of reading works by Marcel Proust, but she shares his love for the classic French cookie-cake = madeleines. She wrote the following, “All I knew was that I am addicted to them. Not all madeleines, just those from Christophe Madeleines in Aix-en-Provence. Being far from an intellectual, I had no idea what people were talking about when they mentioned Proust in relation to madeleines.”
“No sooner had the warm liquid mixed with the crumbs touched my palate than a shudder ran through me, and I stopped, intent upon the extraordinary thing that was happening to me. An exquisite pleasure had invaded my senses…The taste was that of the little piece of madeleine,” ~ Marcel Proust
Continue reading here for Susan’s full review for Aixcentric.
Recipes for Madeleines
- 90 gr All Purpose Flour
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 pinch fleur de sel
- 67 gr Sugar
- 2 zest of lemons finely grated
- 2 large Eggs * at room temperature
- 1 tbsp Honey
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 8 tbsp Unsalted Butter * melted and still warm
- 2 tbsp whole milk
- confectioners' sugar for dusting
- Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a small bowl; set aside.
- Working in the large bowl of a stand mixer, rub the sugar and lemon zest together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and fragrant.
- Add the eggs and, using the whisk attachment, beat at high until the sugar and eggs are slightly thick and pale.
- Beat in the honey and vanilla.
- In a small bowl, mix together the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda and fleur de sel.
- Gently fold in the dry ingredients, stopping when all dry ingredients have been moistened.
- Fold in the melted butter and then the milk.
- Press a piece of wax paper against the surface of the batter and chill for at least 1 hour.
- Using baking spray, coat the molds of two 12-shell madeleine pans.
- Divide the batter among the molds, filling them no more than two-thirds full.
- Refrigerate filled pans for 1 hour longer.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Place the madeleines in the oven and bake for 11 minutes, or until the cakes are golden and the big bumps on their tops spring back when touched.
- Remove the pan from the oven and immediately turn out madeleines onto a cooling rack and allow them to cool to room temperature. (Use a small silicone spatula to remove any madeleines that might have stuck to the pan.)
- Dust cooled madeleines with confectioners’ sugar just before serving.
Preparing the molds:
- 3/4 tbsp Butter
- 1/2 tbsp Flour
- 1 Large egg
- 3 tbsp Unsalted Butter melted and cooled
- 6 tbsp + 2 tsp Flour
- 3 tbsp + 2 tsp Superfine Sugar
- 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
- 2 Clementines for a finely grated zest
- 1 tbsp clementine juice
- confectioners’ sugar for dusting
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Prepare the Madeleine pan: melt 3/4 tablespoon butter, then mix in the 1/2 tablespoon flour.
- Using a pastry brush, “paint” the insides of the molds with the butter and flour mixture.
- Set aside.
- Using a hand-held mixer, beat the egg and sugar together until they become thick and pale.
- Whisk together the flour and baking powder, then sprinkle onto the egg mix and gently fold in.
- Add the melted butter, clementine zest and clementine juice; gently fold into the egg mixture.
- Fill Madeleine molds two-thirds full (a heaping teaspoon), and bake for 11 minutes.
- When they are golden around the edges, remove them from the oven and let cool 2-3 minutes.
- Using a thin spatula, loosen the edges and push the Madeleines out to cool on a rack.
- Dust with confectioner’s sugar.
- Makes 12 Madeleines
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 3/4 cup All Purpose Flour plus more for dusting
- 2 large Eggs
- 1/3 cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 tbsp Light Brown sugar
- 1 tbsp Honey
- 2 tsp finely grated lemon zest or Orange Zest
- 1 tsp Vanilla paste* (if you have. If not, any good quality vanilla)
- 6 tbsp (¾ stick) Unsalted Butter melted and warm
- Nonstick Vegetable Oil Spray or softened butter
- Powdered Sugar
- Whisk baking powder, salt and flour in a small bowl.
- Whisk eggs, granulated sugar, light brown sugar, honey and lemon zest in a medium bowl until smooth.
- Whisk in dry ingredients until just incorporated, then whisk in melted butter until smooth.
- Transfer batter to a pastry bag or resealable plastic bag and chill at least 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 400°.
- Lightly coat madeleine pans with nonstick vegetable oil spray (or soft butter) and dust with flour, tapping out excess.
- Snip end off pastry bag (or 1 corner of resealable bag) and pipe batter into each mold, filling two-thirds full.
- Bake madeleines until edges are golden brown and centers are puffed and lightly spring back when gently pressed, about 5 minutes for mini and 8−10 minutes for regular cakes.
- Tap pan against counter to release madeleines.
- Dust with powdered sugar and serve warm.
A Savoury Twist:
- 100 g Sundried Tomatoes in oil weighed (measured) without the oil, ½ tightly packed cup
- 1 tbsp Chopped Thyme Leaves
- a handful of basil leaves finely chopped
- 2 Eggs
- 80 g (½ cup) Flour
- 15 g (1 ½ tsp) Baking Powder
- 15 g (¼ cup) Grated Cheese Gruyère or Emmental
- 3 tbsp (1/8 cup) olive oil
- a pinch of Salt
- a few rounds of Freshly ground pepper
- Preheat the oven to 240C/475F
- Chop the sundried tomatoes into medium fine chunks.
- Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites. Mix the yolks (with a spoon) with the flour and the baking powder.
- Beat the egg whites just a little bit with a fork to just loosen them up, then stir them into the yolk and flour mix.
- Add the olive oil, a pinch of salt and the pepper and mix really well with a balloon whisk.
- Stir in the grated cheese, the chopped herbs and tomatoes.
- Butter and very lightly flour your Madeleine moulds.
- Fill about one tsp of dough into each Madeleine, taking care not to overload.
- Bake them at 240C/475F for exactly 4 minutes, then, without opening the oven door, lower the temperature to 210C/425F and bake for another 6 minutes.
- Allow to cool and serve with cocktails.