“A sturdy little cake…”


The baking bug is back and biting! Saturday afternoon I just had to bake something and I was fretting about the loneliness of my madeline pans, all alone in a dark cabinet. So I dusted off the trusty “Baking with Julia” and looked up the madeline recipe. I wanted to make brown butter madeleines like the ones I found in Paris in La Grand Epicerie at Bon Marche….here in the convenient mini size.img_0853

Julia talks about the fact that the extra eggs lend a sturdiness to the classic genoise cake, the building block of french cakes.


Triple the volume of the eggs until it’s like a loose whipped cream. “The ribbons should not settle for 10 seconds” is how you will know it is correct consistency!


Whisk the sifted ingredients into the eggs a little at a time and fold them gently, gently…


Add the brown butter a little at a time to some of the tempered batter and then put the that mix back in to larger bowl to mix.


Notice anything missing? Notice there is no sheen of pan spray…? Yes, I forgot to spay the pan. Seriously? Almost an epic fail. Not quite…I got madelines, but without the nice crispy shell design. Instead I got almost indistinguishable lumps. Tasty lumps to be sure, especially with tea, but lumps none the less…

Not so glorious a morning

Sunny Saturday morning. Feeling compelled to bake something for a hostess offering for an overnite stay with friends A & B for our annual summer stock theater extravaganza. Didn’t want to fuss with macarons, so I went to the other “m” French baked good, the Madeleine. 

Unfortunately, I used this recipe, and I should have known better. Really, not quite an epic fail, but close. A recipe that makes a good muffin, but is not not thin enough and too lumpy with ingredients to be able to see the outlines of the shells that the traditional pans produce. Sham. Should have known the ingredients would not be like the genoise batter needed….#kickingmyself


Yet Another Obsession


The Hubs and I don’t usually exchange Christmas gifts, preferring to spend our pennies on “pudding” instead. But Santa did leave a couple of cookbooks for my review.
I looked through the Madeleine cookbook and of course now have a new obsession with small pieces of French baked goods, called Madeleines.

The cookies, made famous by Marcel Proust, in “Remembrance of Things Past” are a light genoise batter and can be flavored in different ways, sweet or savory. And they are always baked in scallop shell pans, so I decided to break in my new pans with gruyere rosemary Madeleines to accompany dinner of an antipasto salad.

Easy enough batter of melted butter, eggs whisked together and then whisked with flour, salt, pepper, and baking powder. Finally fold in the rosemary and shredded gruyere. Bake in greased scallop pan for 12 minutes at 375. I shut the oven off and let them brown a little as the oven cooled.







I’ll keep you updated on progress of new versions. Here’s the finished product!