The first time I saw madeleines was on the TV show Friends. Since they were a cute shell shaped French cake cookie, I was intrigued. Also, they said they were hard to make. Double bonus!
Since then, I have always wanted to try them, but never have, because they require a special pan. The chocolate therapy challenge was a great reason to buy a madeleine pan! I will be trying a non-chocolate madeleine recipe as well, but first and most important is the chocolate recipe. My source is La Tartine gourmande. Since her recipe requires a kitchen scale and I don't have one, and also is not detailed enough for this madeleine beginner, I had to supplement it with info from 101 cookbooks madeleine recipe and a conversion website.
I ended up using mostly dark chocolate with mint, since that's what I had in the fridge. I also overfilled the molds the first time, since 3/4 full of a shell shaped mold is kind of hard to see. Overfilling them is bad, since they stick to the mold more. I think there is a skill there you have to develop to have all your madeleines look awesome like pictures I've seen. Mine turned out okay. The batter recipe is easy, it is getting beautiful looking madeleines that is the hard part.
I'd also appreciate the recipe saying put in a heaping 1 Tbsp (approx amount for regular madeleine molds I'd say), since that would be easier to measure/see. Also, unmold them on a flat surface instead of wire racks for better luck IMO.
The flavor and texture was great. It was like a little cake, delicate and light and chocolatey. Yum! They are rich and delicious. The chocolate mint worked really well for me. MMM...
Photos: Top are my 4 best madeleines. Next is my first batch, which mostly fell apart, trying to unmold on the rack. Next is the amount I put in the molds the 2nd time, resulting in no overflow and finally a batch that I unmolded on a flat surface.
Here is the recipe, modified as I did it:
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 cup white sugar
3.5 oz dark chocolate
4 oz (1/2 stick) butter, unsalted
1 tsp. baking powder
dash sea salt
*Place the chocolate and butter in a heat proof bowl and melt over a pot of simmering water. Let it cool down.
* Sift the flour and baking powder and keep on the side.
* Place the eggs in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on high with a whisk attachment until they double/triple in volume (about 3 minutes).
* Reduce the speed and add the sugar in a steady stream. Increase the speed to high again and beat until lighter in color, about 2 minutes (until thick and ribbony).
* Remove the bowl and add the flour and baking powder with a wooden spoon.
* Add the cool melted chocolate and butter and blend, not overworking the dough.
* Place the batter in the fridge for a few hours before baking (minimum 1 hour).
*Use baking spray on molds or butter & flour them.
* Fill special madeleine molds 3/4 full. (Approx 1 Tbsp per mold). Do not spread out, as they will fill it while baking. Do not overfill.
* Preheat your oven at 430 F and cook the madeleines for 7 minutes first so that they rise nicely, then reduce the heat to 350 F and continue to cook for 4 more minutes.
* Unmold immediately and cool on racks. Best eaten day they are made, will keep a few days.
Makes approx 3 dozen cookies.