Sunday, September 30, 2007

Recipe of the week from Chocolate: Petits Madeleines au Chocolat

Originally posted on September 25th, 2007, as a sample recipe from the book.

A chocolate variation of the little cakes that sent Proust into raptures.

200 g flour
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
240 g sugar
100 g Síríus Konsúm chocolate or dark, sweet-bitter baking chocolate
finely grated rind of one orange
4 eggs
200 g sweet butter, melted
1 tbs baking cocoa

Mix all the ingredients except the melted butter until you have a smooth mass. Gently stir in the butter. Put one heaping teaspoon of dough into each shell of a Madeleine pan, smooth down and bake at 180°C for 10-12 minutes (less if you're using a pan with really tiny shells).

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Not very nice looking, but they taste heavenly!


The Madeleine tin I have is for making miniatures, meaning that a whole recipe would be many times too much, so I made half a recipe. Half a recipe was still too much, but because the baking time is so short (10-12 minutes) I decided I could probably use up the dough before the baking powder stopped working. I was right: I baked three rounds of 20 cakes each, and each round lifted beautifully. I could have baked two more rounds from that half recipe, but I didn’t feel like continuing. I must admit I did eat some of the raw dough, which is yummy and has the flavour and consistency of soft orange-chocolate fudge.

Since I have not made or even eaten Madeleines before, I can not say if these are like the genuine article, but they didn’t turn out looking like the picture in the book, or indeed any of the photos I found by googling. I spite of generous greasing of the tin and the cakes sliding out of it when I turned the tin over and shook it, the cakes did not have the distinct shell-like fluting of the sample in the photo. The colour was right, though. The cakes are spongy, airy, light and fluffy, like good sponge cakes should be, but the shell pattern is indistinct. If anyone has a suggestion as to why they tuned out looking like this, I would appreciate a comment.

The flavour is heavenly: chocolate with a hint of vanilla (the chocolate contains vanilla) and orange, and not too sweet. I get the feeling they would be lovely dipped in vanilla sauce. I think the recipe would make a nice cake, topped with fresh strawberries and Zabaglione or whipped cream.

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You can just barely see some fluting at the edges, otherwise it's just an oblong lump.

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