Thursday, January 5, 2012

Lemon Madeleines

A wish came true on Christmas morning.

I opened up my long-anticipated Madeleine pan.

I've been wanting one for years, which makes me wonder why in the heck I didn't just go out and buy one because heavens, they are about as expensive as a trip to Cafe Rio. Well, nearly. I suppose it's just more fun when someone buys it for you, wraps it up and surprises you.

Madeleines are petite sponge cakes that are eaten like a cookie- they go perfectly between your thumb and index finger and in about 3 bites, are goners. They are so pretty, so aromatic, and frankly, make me feel like I'm a mile away from the Eiffel Tower.

.. which, is never ever a bad thing.

Cannot wait to make another batch- these ones went straight over to a New Year's game-night extravaganza!

Lemon Madeleines

{Williams Sonoma}

2 eggs

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 tsp. almond extract

1/2 cup all-purpose flour, sifted

1 tsp. grated lemon zest

4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted

and cooled

Confectioners’ sugar for dusting (optional)

Preheat an oven to 375°F. Using a pastry brush, heavily brush softened butter over each of the 12 molds in a madeleine pan, carefully buttering every ridge. Dust the molds with flour, tilting the pan to coat the surfaces evenly. Turn the pan upside down and tap it gently to dislodge the excess flour.

In a large bowl, combine the eggs, granulated sugar and salt. Using a wire whisk or a handheld mixer on medium-high speed, beat vigorously until pale, thick and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and almond extracts. Sprinkle the sifted flour over the egg mixture and stir or beat on low speed to incorporate.

Using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the lemon zest and half of the melted butter just until blended. Fold in the remaining melted butter.

Divide the batter among the prepared molds, using a heaping tablespoon of batter for each mold. Bake the madeleines until the tops spring back when lightly touched, 8 to 12 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven and invert it over a wire rack, then rap it on the rack to release the madeleines. If any should stick, use your fingers to loosen the edges, being careful not to touch the hot pan, and invert and rap again.

Let the madeleines cool on the rack for 10 minutes. Using a fine-mesh sieve, dust the tops with confectioners sugar and serve. Makes 12.

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