I have long wanted to try my hand at baking madeleines, the soft, buttery, shell shaped pastries. Though our small San Francisco kitchen doesn’t have much room left for any new equipment, I finally convinced myself it was time to get a pan.
So what are madeleines? While in my mind, all that’s classified under that name is “delicious”, I thought I’d do a bit more research. There are different stories for how these little cookies were first invented, but at there core they are actually mini cakes (I have definitely mistakenly referred to them as soft cookies before) made with Genoise batter, or in other words batter where eggs and sugar are beat together until they form a batter thick enough to fall in ribbons off the whisk. In madeleines, melted butter is also added to the batter.
For my first attempt, I thought I’d try the classic combination of orange and dark chocolate. I think I’m rather pleased with the results, and while there’s room for future iterations, I thought I’d share this recipe here. Hope you enjoy them!
- 18-20 madeleines
- 2.5 hours
- 25 minutes
- 1 orange - juice and zest (about 1/2 cup juice, a bit less than 1/2 cup zest
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 stick butter, melted, plus extra for pan
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 tsp coarse salt
- 1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- pinch of salt
- Reduce 1/2 cup fresh orange juice to about 1/2
- Whip sugar and eggs together and pale and thick enough to fall in ribbons. About 10 minutes.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt
- Once eggs and sugar are properly whisked, sift the flour mixture over the sugar and eggs in 2 additions, making sure to fold in the flour in between additions.
- Fold in orange zest, orange juice, and vanilla.
- Refrigerate batter, covered, for at least 2 hours (I left mine overnight).
- After at least 2 hours: Preheat oven to 350F.
- Let batter stand in room temp for 10 minutes.
- Generously butter your madeleine pan.
- Using a pastry bag (or a spoon if you haven’t got one), transfer batter to the molds. Fill the molds to about 3/4 full.
- Bake for 10-11 minutes until the cakes catch a tiny bit of color.
- Shake out (or use a knife or spatula to help them out if they have stuck a bit), clean mold, and repeat with remaining batter.
- Let cakes cool
- Melt chocolate chips. I melt mine in the microwave, in 30 second bursts, mixing well in between to ensure even melting and prevent burning.
- Let chocolate cool slightly in room temperature, 5-10 minutes.
- Add a tbsp of olive oil and pinch of salt to chocolate, mixing well.
- Dip madeleines in half way into chocolate. Let them cool on baking paper in room temp. Can also put in fridge to help chocolate firm up.
- Serve madeleines in room temp. Enjoy!
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