Sunday, May 31, 2009


I got these for my birthday and I was SO excited to play with my new toys! (Thanks, Mom!) My first attempt was the recipe that came with the madeleine pan. It had ground almonds in it which I guess is traditional but gave them the strangest texture. I want to try again and grind them with my mortar and pestle and see if that makes a difference. (By the way, don't just leave almonds going in your food processor and think that you'll get ground almonds if you leave it for a while. You'll get almond butter. Full of useful tips, aren't I?)

So I popped open the 500 Cookies cookbook looking for a recipe for madeleines. No luck. Bummer. I spent a good hour going through that book cover to cover, though! Then I moved on to the 500 Cupcakes. Page 40. . . . madeleines! Woo hoo!

Madeleines from 500 Cupcakes

Pretty, aren't they! They tasted good but were a little dry. I did a little looking because I remembered reading that the 'hump' on the madeleine is an important characteristic. I don't even remember how I stumbled across this recipe/blog, but I am SO glad I did! They came out 1,000 times better! They tasted better (especially with the glaze), had a better texture, had the hump, etc. Jay came in the kitchen at one point and asked where the madeleines had gone. I had filled up a mug with them to take a picture and there was another half dozen still on the cooling rack. I have absolutely no idea where the others went. *whistling*

David Lebovitz's Madeleines

So this is Lebovitz's recipe. If you have a pan, you must try them! They are fantastic!!!

Lemon Glazed Madeleines

3 large eggs, at room temperature
2/3 cup granulated sugar
rounded 1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
zest of one small lemon
9 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled to room temperature


(I doubled the glaze, not sure why I needed so much, but I ran out half way through!)
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice
2 tablespoons water

1. Brush the indentations of a madeleine mold with melted butter. Dust with flour, tap off any excess, and place in the fridge or freezer.(I tried it this way and with Pam and couldn't tell any difference. I say go for the Pam!)

2. In the bowl of a standing electric mixer, whip the eggs, granulated sugar, and salt for 5 minutes until frothy and thickened.

3. Spoon the flour and baking powder, if using, into a sifter or mesh strainer and use a spatula to fold in the flour as you sift it over the batter. (Rest the bowl on a damp towel to help steady it for you.)

4. Add the lemon zest to the cooled butter, then dribble the butter into the batter, a few spoonfuls at a time, while simultaneously folding to incorporate the butter. Fold just until all the butter is incorporated.

5. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. (Batter can be chilled for up to 12 hours.) (I waited 4 hours. That was hard. But the batter was perfect!)

6. To bake the madeleines, preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

8. Plop enough batter in the center of each indentation with enough batter which you think will fill it by 3/4's (you'll have to eyeball it, but it's not brain-surgery so don't worry if you're not exact.) Do not spread it. (Seriously. Do.Not.Spread.It.)

10. Bake for 8-9 minutes or until the cakes just feel set. While the cakes are baking, make a glaze in a small mixing bowl by stirring together the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and water until smooth.

11. Remove from the oven and tilt the madeleines out onto a cooling rack. (I ended up placing a towel over the pan and flipping them into the towel before transferring to the cooling rack. Those slippery little buggers kept trying to take a nosedive to the floor.) The moment they're cool enough to handle, dip each cake in the glaze, turning them over to make sure both sides are coated and scrape off any excess with a dull knife. After dipping, rest each one back on the cooking rack, scalloped side up, until the cakes are cool and the glaze has firmed up.

Storage: Glazed madeleines are best left uncovered, or not tightly-wrapped; they're best eaten the day they're made. They can be kept in a container for up to three days after baking, if necessary. I don't recommend freezing them since the glaze will melt.
(By the way, this looks like a long, drawn out recipe. It's not. Took like 10 minutes to make the batter and maybe another 10 minutes when it came time to bake. Don't be intimidated!)

As a teenager I was lucky enough to have a loving father who would drop what he was doing to work on my car when it broke down. (Which happened a lot.) My dad would always come in and thrust some greasy, black automobile innard under my nose after he'd been working on the car for a while. "See? This is your whole problem right here! I pulled apart the -insert car lingo here- and found this. No wonder you were having problems!" Sometimes he would bring in the old, broken I-have-no-idea-what and the shiny, new one he was going to replace it with. So I could marvel in wonderment, I guess. Seriously, what else am I going to do? 'Ah, yes, Father. I see how that fuel filter is clogged. What a massive blockage! How ever did you discover it?'

Anywho, after I made the perfect madeleines I was taking their picture alongside the leftover ones from the previous attempt. I grabbed them and rushed them in to Jay. "Look at this! See the difference? This is what they are supposed. . . . . .omg. I just turned into my dad." But seriously. Look at these!!!

Are they not perfect? Puffy and shiny with perfect ridges and bursting with not-vanilla flavor! (By the way, it appears that this one has cracked on top. That is not the case, I promise. Those are just the lines in the glaze left after sitting on the cooling rack.)

Also, yes, I posted these under cookies. I know they are not cookies. But I can't bring myself to label them 'cakes'. They are just too dainty and bite-sized to be cakes. Sorry. Just can't do it.

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Megan said...

Someday I'll get one of those pans and I will try this recipe. They are beautiful!

Heidi said...


First let me comment on your awesome photography skills. Your photos are amazing!

Madeleines are one of my favorite cookies and I kind of forget about them. I have not used my madeleine pans in about 2 years! Yikes! Your recipe has given me incentive to pull out the pans and make some. Love the photo of your madeleines in a cup.


Jennie said...

Wow, Heidi, thank you! I'm so flattered :) I hope you do break out your pans, these are just delicious!