I just booked my summer holidays last week and I literally cannot wait to go. I’m heading to the Cote d’Azur for a week and am already beyond excited about all the places I will visit, the sun I will soak, the beaches I will swim from and of course I’m drooling at the thought of all the patisseries I plan on visiting when I’m there. Unfortunately I’m not heading away until the very last week of August so in the spirit of all things French and wonderful, I decided to make a batch Madeleines last weekend. If I’m honest I’ve never even had a Madeleine before, but I appreciate the way the French can take a buttery sponge cake and make it sound so much prettier and look so much more delicate than we do at home!
With a glut of apricots bursting from all the supermarket shelves at the moment, I decided to make a nice fruity, summery Apricot Madeleine. I have had Rachel Khoo’s cookbook for a while (I want her cool Parisian life), and all the recipes are great so I decided to loosely follow her Madeleine recipe although instead of the milk and honey she uses, I used fresh orange juice and cream which worked out surprisingly well.
With the house to myself, a new copy of Vogue, a pot of tea and a freshly baked batch of Apricot Madeleines at my disposal, the long wait until my holidays in France was made all the more bearable for a morning!
Ingredients (makes about 24-30):
200g plain/cream flour
10g baking powder
Zest of 1 orange
75ml freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tbsp cream (you can use milk)
200g butter melted and cooled
5-6 apricots finely sliced
1. Beat the eggs with the sugar until pale and frothy (around doubled in size).
2. In a seperate bowl mix the flour, baking powder and orange zest.
3. Mix the orange juice, milk and melted cooled butter in another bowl and add to the frothy eggs in two batches.
4. Then fold in the flour gently and leave in the fridge for a few hours or overnight (I left mine overnight, it was easier for me to prepare them the night before and pop them in the oven the next morning).
5. Preheat the oven to 190C. If you’re Madeleine tray isn’t non stick then butter and flour it before use. Put a teaspoon of batter into each Madeleine shell (be careful not to overload the moulds as otherwise the batter will rise outside of it in the oven, and you won’t achieve that delicate Madeleine shape… I learnt this the hard way after my first batch.) Press one or two slices of apricot into the batter of each Madeleine.
6. Bake for 5 minutes, then turn off the oven for a minute then bake for 5 more minutes at 160C. (I don’t really know if this makes any difference compared to just baking them at 190C for 10 minutes.. but Rachel’s recipe said to do this so I blindly followed and it worked out really well, but as I haven’t made them before, I’m not sure if there is any benefit to turning the oven off for a minute).
7. Pop the Madeleine out of the tray onto a wire rack to cool, then dust with icing sugar to serve. If you like me just have one tray, give it a wipe down and repeat the process until all your batter is used up.