I'm back with more Once Upon A Tart recipes. I have a reader request for scones from Once Upon A Tart that I'll put up soon. In the meantime, I'll tell you about the madeleines I made from the cookbook a month or so ago.
Madeleines are considered a French cookie, though they are more akin to a sponge cake than what you would recognize as a cookie here in the States. In order to make them, you need a special scallop-shaped >madeleine tin. I bought my tins from Wayfair.com. I chose to get the steel tins because I like how they cook better than the nonstick tins, which cost twice the price that these did. If you grease the molds properly, it won't take much effort for the madeleines to release without any trouble.
The batter is a is a lightly sweetened, buttery sponge cake. I didn't feel that there was much of a honey presence, but I'm sure it added to the overall flavor of the madeleines. After preparing the batter, you refrigerate it to chill for at least 30 minutes. I looked this up on various sites and they say the chilling contributes to the humps that form on the tops of the madeleines, which is the mark of a well-made cake.
The original recipe says to grease the madeleines by brushing the molds with butter. I used the directions from other recipes, which say to mix flour with the butter and then brush the molds. Since this procedure is like the PAM baking spray, I figured it would prevent excess sticking from occurring.
One recipe makes 12 madeleines, so I doubled the recipe. I ended up with more than 24 and I'm not sure how that happened. More to eat!
The madeleines baked perfectly in about 10 minutes, rising nicely and forming a brown crust. I needed to prod them out of the molds a little, but not much stuck to the tins.
I'm happy to finally have madeleine tins because I've been wanting to make these for a while. Sure, they're basically a muffin/cupcake, but they're extremely cute and unusual. Think of all the madeleine variations you could make, like red velvet or mini chocolate chip! I am also going to suggest these madeleine tins. The price was good and they baked the madeleines evenly.
Recipe from Once Upon A Tart
Makes 12 madeleines
4 tablespoons unsalted butter; plus more, melted, for brushing in madeleine molds
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract
2 large eggs
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
A pinch of salt
Confectioners' sugar for dusting madeleines
- Melt the 4 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan over low heat, being careful not to burn or brown the butter. Remove pot from the stove. Stir in the honey and the extract, and let cool to room temperature.
- Beat the eggs and sugars together in a big bowl, using an electric mixer on high speed, until the eggs are foamy and light in color.
- In a separate, small bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together. Slowly fold these dry ingredients into the wet, with the mixer on low speed (or stirring with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula), stopping as soon as no flour is visible. Pour in the cooled butter-honey, and continue mixing until all the ingredients are combined. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, until the batter is chilled.
- Before removing the dough from the refrigerator, position your oven racks so that one is in the center and preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Brush your madeleine molds with melted butter.
- Take a spoonful of batter and pushing it off with your finger, fill each mild to three-quarters full. Madeleines rise a lot, so don't overfill the molds. The goal is to have the cookies retain their perfect little scallop shape.
- Place the mold on the center rack in the oven, and bake the madeleines for 8-10 minutes, or until they are puffed up above the edge of the mold and each madeleine has a bump on it, like the hump of a camel. You don't want to overbake these; take them out when the edges have turned golden brown.
- Remove the mold from the oven, and set it on a wire rack for a few minutes, to cool enough so that it's easy to work with. Don't let it cool for too long. Ideally you want to eat the cakes while they're still warm. Lift the mold off the rack, and set it on your work surface. Place the rack on top of the mold ad flip it upside down. The madeleines will fall right out. (I prodded mine out with the top of a butter knife.)
- If you're not serving the madeleines warm, once they've cooled to room temperature use a strainer to sprinkle a thin dusting of confectioners' sugar on the seashell side of the madeleines. They're so pretty this way that it almost makes up for the fact that they're not still warm.