Classic French Madeleines

Madeleines are petite French tea cakes traditionally baked in distinctive scallop shell pans. Not quite cookies, and not quite cakes, these buttery bite size pastries are the perfect treat to accompany a cup of tea or a strong espresso.  

INGREDIENTS:

4 oz. premium quality butter (such as Kerrygold)
2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs, room temperature
1 cup + 2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch of salt

METHOD:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly coat each well of the madeleine pan* with non-stick spray and set aside.   

In a saucepan, melt the butter. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.

Add sugar to the cooled butter and whisk until thoroughly blended. Add one egg at a time, stirring until each egg is incorporated before adding the next egg.

Add half the flour and stir until incorporated. Stir in remaining flour, vanilla extract, baking powder, and pinch of salt.

Spoon the batter into prepared madeleine pan filling to 3/4 full.  

Bake for 15-17 minutes or until lightly golden around the edges. Allow to cool for one minute in the pan, then gently turn out onto a rack to cool.

Dust with powdered sugar before serving. Alternately, melt a couple of ounces of dark chocolate and dip the madeleines into the chocolate to coat the ends. Allow chocolate to harden before serving.

*My preferred madeleine pans are non-stick pans made by USA Pans.


VARIATIONS:
Lemon: Add 1/2 teaspoon fine lemon zest to batter.
Chocolate: Add 2 tablespoons cocao powder to batter
Poppyseed: Add 2 teaspoons poppyseed to batter.
Chocolate Chip: Add 1/2 cup miniature chocolate chips to batter.

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