After trying countless recipes of these famous little French cakes, I finally found the one written by Julia Child. The texture is perfect! They are soft but firm on the inside, buttery and a little crisp on the outside. While the recipe starts with a sponge-like batter, the addition of butter turns it into a cross between a sponge and a pound cake.
The famous hump is achieved by letting the batter chill in the fridge for at least one hour (and up to two days) to firm up before scooping it into the pan. Don’t spread the batter before putting in the oven!
The browned butter adds an extra dimension to the flavour.
makes 2 dozen madeleines
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup flour
5 oz. unsalted butter
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
lemon zest of 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp flour
Melt the butter in a pan. Keep the heat on medium to high until the butter becomes brown and smells nutty. Take off the stove and let it come to room temperature.
Beat the eggs and sugar with an electric mixer until tripled in volume. Add the flour and mix in, careful not to deflate the egg mixture.
Add the salt, lemon zest, vanilla and 4 oz. of the browned butter and mix well.
Refrigerate the batter for at least one hour. This step is crucial for getting the hump!
In the meantime, prepare the pans by brushing each cavity with the leftover browned butter and coating them with the extra flour. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Put one tablespoon of batter into each cavity but don’t spread the batter.
Bake for about 15 min.
Let cool and dust with icing sugar.