Making Madeleines

There are a lot of recipes and tips on how to make these delightful sponge cake cookies. It can be a bit overwhelming. But our first attempt at making Madeleines wasn’t so bad. It takes some prep and some patience but the results are delicious. We did it and so can you.

After pouring over a few recipes I finally settled on one from Serious Eats by Lauren Weisenthal. I found the directions to be straightforward and we loved the detailed slideshow that made following along easy for P.

We’re calling this a Daring Dragonfly bake because while it takes only few pantry staples it really is particular and requires patience and technique. We definitely made yummy madeleines but they lacked the definitive hump and they were not as spongy as we would like. Even while they weren’t perfect they were definitely worth the effort and something we will bake again.

Making MADs with your Little Baker

Prep is key in this bake. I planned ahead to have room temperature eggs and the butter melted and cooled. Then I measured all the ingredients while P and J played together. We also read a story about our favorite the little french girl to get in the spirit.

I think the most important step to be aware of is folding in the flour and melted butter. As I’ve read, and experienced, its very easy to over-mix. At 5 years old P was able to help with a lot. Little bakers might be able to:

  • Rub the vanilla bean into the sugar (we did not have vanilla bean so we used a 1/2 teaspoon of extract);
  • Crack the eggs into a separate bowl, check for shells and then add them to the sugar. (I cracked the eggs this time because P is going through an anti-egg cracking phase.)
  • Take turns mixing the butter and sugar for several minutes.
  • Add the flour and melted butter while a grown up folds gently with a spatula.
  • Prepare the baking pan by spreading butter in the shells and sprinkling on the sugar.
  • Help fill the tins with dough. As I read many places, the filling does not need to be perfectly spread out. It will work itself out in the oven!

How We Baked It

You can find the Serious Eats recipe we used here: Vanilla Bean Madeleine Recipe

Here’s the gallery of the techniques used in making Madeleines. P really loved following along with these pictures: Sweet Technique: How to Make Madeleines.

Brother woke up just as they were coming out of the oven in time for our tea party.

Happy Baking!

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