May 8, 2009

Chocolate and Lemon Madeleines

Posted by Susan at 9:00 AM

Sometimes you just wake up craving something sweet. Sadly this is more usual than not for me. Last weekend I woke up with this craving and asked my husband for suggestions for what I should bake, he replied "madeleines". He always replies madeleines or pie, and I always end up walking away frustrated. Don't get me wrong, I love both of these things, but not ALL the time!

I ended up walking over to my cookbook disaster area, I really need to stop buying books but I can't help myself, and picked up Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme. As I flipped through it I found a recipe for Chocolate and Lemon Madeleines, PERFECT. My husband can get his madeleines and I get to try something new.

These were delicious, chocolatey, cake-like cookies with a hint of lemon.

Chocolate and Lemon Madeleines
Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme

INGREDIENTS
1/2 cup plus 1 tbs all-purpose flour
3 1/2 tbs Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup plus 2 tbs sugar
Pinch of salt
Grated zest of 1/2 lemon
2 large eggs, at room temperature
6 1/2 tbs unslated butter, at room temperature

DIRECTIONS
1. Sift together the flour, cocoa and baking powder and set aside. Put the sugar, salt and lemon zest in a medium bowl and rub everything together until the sugar is moist, grainy and very aromatic.
2. Using a whisk, beat the eggs into the lemon-sugar mixture is blended. Squish the butter through your fingers or smear it under the heel of your hand to create a pomade. Still working with the whisk, beat in the butter to get it evenly distributed. Gently whisk in the sifted flour mixture, stirring only until the flour is incorporated and the mixture is smooth.
3. Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the batter and chill it overnight before baking. The overnight rest helps the cookies develop the characteristic bumps on their backs; if you don't have time for an overnight rest, try to give the batter at least an hour in the refrigerator.
4. When you are ready to bake the cookies, center a rack in the oven and oreheat the oven to 425*F (220*C). Butter a 12 mold madeleine pan, then dust the molds with flour, tapping out the excess.
5. Divide the batter evenly among the madeleine molds. Don't worry about flattening the batter, the heat will do that). Place the pan in the oven, insert a wooden spoon in the door to keep it slightly ajar, and immediately turn the oven temperature down to 350*F (180*C).
6. Bake the cookies for 13 to 15 minutes, or until they are domed and spring back when lightly pressed. Unmold the cookies onto a work surface - then transfer them to a rack to cool to room temperature.

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