Updated: Apr 11
Let me tell you now, my views on madeleine’s have changed.
I’m gonna be completely honest right now, I’ve NEVER understood the madeleine. Like, aren’t they just a tiny cake with no icing and in a pretty dull shape? Essentially, yes ;). However, there is certainly something special about taking the first bit of a madeleine.
I had never actually had a madeleine before this (I reap my sins), and so didn’t understand the importance of how they should be eaten. Ansel speaks quite profusely about how they must be eaten as soon as they come out of the oven, and should rest for no more than a couple of minutes (they even bake them to order in his shops)! Having read this, I knew that I would have to work quickly when they came out of the oven, and BOY was it worth it.
Taking that first bite of the warm (bordering on hot) sweet, slightly zesty and light as air cake was something so special. It feels so simple but is magic as soon as it hits your mouth. I urge you to follow Ansel’s instructions and eat them fresh out of the oven (they’re even better with a heavy dusting of icing sugar (trust me ;)). You will have the time of your life.
There was one slight variation between mine and Ansel’s recipe for mini madeleine’s, and that is that mine were not mini at all! There’s a fairly plain reason for this; quite simply I already had a full size mould and couldn’t afford/justify buying a new one. I found one at the bottom of a box packed full of a bunch of silicone moulds I have never/will never use (curse those Deagostini cake decorating magazines), and decided that I could get away with it (I promise I’m not a fraud).
The batter is super quick and simple to make, and requires resting in the fridge over night (something to do with the baking powder and allowing the madeleine’s to have a better rise). Mine actually had quite a bit longer and was probably a bit closer to the 24-hour mark (I don’t know if that worked for or against me, either way I didn’t notice a significant difference).
Actually, the entirety of this recipe was really easy, not just the making of the batter. I would go as far to say my mum would be able to bake a successful batch (if you have ever met my mum you’d know that that’s a pretty great achievement ;)). The mixture was piped into the mould (to be honest, it could probably be poured if the idea of piping bags gives you anxiety ;)), and baked until the madeleine’s were golden brown and would bounce back.
In conclusion, I couldn’t have been more wrong about the madeleine. They are the humblest yet most satisfying cake out there, and I would be shocked if anyone were to dislike them. I could literally eat them all day (and trust me I ATE A LOT) and still want more ;).
This blog post has been pretty short and sweet (there’s really not much I can say about madeleine’s apart from raving about them), but you should definitely check out the others! This is also only the second recipe so make sure you continue reading!
NEXT UP: MINI ME’s AND HOT CHOCOLATE (I’m treating you with two next time ;)).
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