I came up with this madeleines recipe after a long journey. A journey that involved making just about every madeleines recipe I found on the internet.
If you don’t know what madeleines are, or if you’ve never had one before, let me paint this picture for you…
French madeleines have this attractive finesse and lightness that all the other cookies lack.
The beauty of a madeleine is effortless. It just happens. Their shape kinda flows. Even when they just sit there on a plate, at the table, it’s almost like they are moving.
And when you pick one up and bite it, you feel like you are biting into a cloud, a cakey and perfectly sweetened cloud.
If there was a contest for the Most Sublime Cookie, the winner would certainly be a Madeleine. No doubt about it.
First of all, this is a very easy cookie to make. I have experimented with just about every method that explains how to make madeleines that is out there on the internet.
Without any further ado, let’s go over them!
There are basically three different approaches to how to mix the eggs in your batter:
- Whipping the eggs over a double boiler and getting them to a certain temperature and then whipping them longer until they are in ribbon stage.
- Whipping one egg white until medium peaks are formed and then folding that into the batter.
- Simply whisk the eggs until they are frothy and lightened in color.
And to me the last one is the winning method. It’s what works best for me, and conveniently enough, it’s the easiest method.
The baking powder
To use it or not to use it is the question here.
My answer is NO!
I do not use baking powder in my madeleines. Baking powder makes the madeleine have this unnecessary elevated bump that completely throws off the shape of the perfect madeleine cookies.
Therefore, leave the baking powder out! (please)
- Cream softened butter with sugar
- Melt the butter
Most methods are going to request for the butter to be melted. And that is the approach I take.
Seems to me that, texture wise, there isn’t much of a difference between creaming or melting the butter. The melted butter madeleine is slightly lighter and the crumb is a bit finer.
When melting the butter, I let it bubble up and cook it for about 1 minute, until it smells nutty and toasty, slightly browned in color. This provides depth of flavor to the final product.
What a difference, guys! Definitely try this next time you make madeleines.
Resting or not resting
The answer is yes!
Rest your dough in the fridge. Your madeleine will have a much prettier shape.
This right here is the reason why you don’t need the baking powder to create the beautiful madeleine bump. When the batter rests in the fridge, the butter will harden up and give the cookie a much better structure when it bakes.
I like to add lime (or lemon) juice and zest to my madeleines. For this recipe, I made it a orange one to go with my cranberries.
This orange cranberry madeleines came out so delicious I didn’t even know what to do with myself. (Sorry, Dulce de leche Snickerdoodles, I might have a new favorite)
Orange Cranberry Madeleines
- 1/2 cup butter 4 oz or 113 g
- 2/3 c white sugar 4.7 oz or 133 grams
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour 3.4 oz or 95 grams
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 teaspoon table salt
- 2 tablespoons orange juice
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanila extract
- 1/3 cup finely chopped dried cranberries
- 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
Start by melting the butter in a small sauce pan.
Once butter melts and starts to boil, cook it, stirring non-stop for about 1 minute, to give the butter a nutty, toasty taste and aroma.
Set butter aside to cool.
In a bowl, sift together sugar, flour and salt. Set aside.
In another bowl, whisk the eggs, orange juice, orange zest and vanilla extract until eggs are frothy and lightened in color, 1-2 minutes.
Pour the egg mixture into the dry mixture and fold with a spatula until just incorporated.
Don’t overmix the ingredients. Make sure you stop stirring as soon as you can’t see anymore streaks of flour.
Add melted, toasty and cool butter in and whisk slowly to combine.
Mix dried cranberries and 2 teaspoons of flour together. Add it to the batter. Fold with a spatula until incorporated.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight.
When you are ready to bake, grease your madeleine pans with butter and coat with flour.
Remember to grease really well between the creases.
Pre-heat oven to 350F.
Pour 1 tablespoon of madeleine batter into each mold. Bake for 8-12 minutes until golden brown on the edges and puffed.
Don’t overbake the madeleines or they will become hard.
To serve, sprinkle powdered sugar on top or you can glaze it with some orange glaze.
To make a quick orange glaze, simply mix 1 cup of confectioners sugar with 1-2 tablespoons of orange juice.
You can add the consistency of the glaze by adding more sugar if it’s too runny or more orange juice if it’s too hard.
Then drizzle over the madeleines or dunk the top part of the cookie in the glaze and let it dry for a few minutes.
Madeleines are best served on the same day, preferably right after baked and cooled slightly.