Chocolate and Orange Madeleines


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Madeleines are one of my favorites to bake, for the simple reason that they are very easy to make, and they only need basic ingredients – flour, butter, sugar, egg and any additional flavor of your choice. These chocolate and orange ones are made with the addition of cocoa powder and orange zest to the plain sponge batter.

A perfect madeleine is somewhere between a tender, moist cake and a crisp, sweet cookie. They are soft and buttery in the centre with crisp edges, and with a signature bump in the middle. Serve them with a cup of tea or coffee, or with a scoop of soft vanilla ice cream for a perfect dessert.

What makes these simple little cakes so exciting is their shape. The sponge cake batter is poured into special shell-shaped moulds with ribbed indentations that give them their classic shape. I have used individual moulds, but you can also find sheet pans with little shell-shaped indentations. Don’t forget to brush the moulds with melted butter (preferably twice) before pouring the batter in, as this makes it easy to remove them from the mould once you have finished baking. It requires some patience to get them right, but in the end I can assure you it is worth the effort.

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Chocolate and Orange Madeleines

  • Plain flour-60 g
  • Cocoa powder-20 g
  • Baking powder-½ teaspoon
  • Eggs-2
  • Castor sugar-80 g
  • Honey-1 tablespoon
  • Butter-90 g
  • Orange zest-1 teaspoon
  • Melted butter (to brush on the moulds)

Method 

  • Brush the madeleine moulds with melted butter.
  • Sieve the flour with cocoa powder and baking powder.
  • Melt the butter and cool to room temperature.
  • Whisk together the eggs, castor sugar and honey in a bowl until well combined and sugar is well dissolved.
  • Add sifted flour mixture and orange zest to the egg and sugar mixture, and mix.
  • Whisk in the melted butter until well combined. Rest the mixture in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  • Fill the madeleine moulds ¾ full with the mixture and bake in a pre heated oven 190°C for 10-12 minutes.