The Diary of a Displaced Housewife is now Life In Fuchsia…

'The Diary of the Displaced Housewife' is now 'Life in Fuschia'

Monday, April 5, 2010

Here Comes The Housewife (with a plate of perfectly baked Madeleines!)

To kick-start my blog, I thought it was fitting to write about something that rocks my husband’s world. No… I’m not a ‘pativritah’ type (far from it actually according to my long suffering husband!) but he was the one to egg me on to start blogging. Or maybe he just wanted me to vent on helpless readers rather than him!

When I first moved to LA, we used to buy a huge box of Madeleines from Costco that inevitably turned rock hard and stale after a couple of days. At the end of the day, even R and I can’t finish a Costco sized portion of anything in a few days. So once I started baking, I tentatively tried making them myself after a class and have since never looked back. Maybe I’m a Madeleine snob but I must say that nothing store bought can even BEGIN to compare with the ones made at home.  (Especially the ones coming out of The Housewife’s kitchen! :D)

What are they: Originating in France, these cakey little goodies are baked in a special pan with grooved shell like indentations.  With a genoise base, they bake up to beautiful golden color, making them worthy of the ‘fanciest’ high tea. Deceptively simple to make and a real treat with a cup of perfectly brewed coffee, these petit treats will surely disappear once you pass them around the table.
recipe source: Kate Goodyear
What you need:
o       1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, melted and cooled
o       Additional melted butter for brushing moulds
o      1¼ cups sifted cake flour
o       ½ tsp baking powder
          ½ tsp salt
o      3 large eggs
o      1 tsp vanilla
o      2/3 cup granulated sugar
o     2 tsps grated lemon zest
o    Confectioners/ powdered sugar for dusting

Get ‘em done:
Brush your moulds with the additional melted butter. Make sure you grease every nook and cranny.
Move your oven racks to the upper and middle sections of the oven and preheat to the ubiquitous 350 degrees.
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt. Keep aside.
In a large bowl, beat up the eggs using either a stand mixer or a hand mixer on high speed.  The eggs need to become light and foamy (Be patient, it only takes a minute or so)
Add in the vanilla.
With the mixer on, slowly add in the granulated sugar and continue to beat the mixture at a high speed.  The mixture needs to expand to about three times the volume.
Reduce your speed; add in the flour mixture slowly. As you add in the flour, do not over mix the batter.
Now add in the butter and lemon zest. Mix in gently.
Fill in your moulds till they are 3/4th full. Do not over fill.
Bake for about 10 to 11 minutes till a toothpick comes out clean. Turn the pan around halfway into the cooking time.
Carefully remove the cakes onto a wire rack and let them cool.

To Serve:
Lightly sprinkle the cooled Madeleines with some powdered sugar and serve ‘em up!

Variations/ Notes:
o       Sometimes to dress up my Madeleines, I dip then in chocolate to create a beautiful contrast. The mini Madeleines can be dipped completely but for the regular sized ones, I do a half dip. 

o       Personally, I prefer them straight up, with no frills.  The light freshness from the lemon zest comes through and for me, sometimes simple is the best.

o      If you don’t have cake flour on hand, don’t panic.  This should help you out

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