Delicate little cakes infused with vanilla, madeleines are a quick and impressive-looking dessert fit for big and little kids.
- plain flour, to dust
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup caster sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- ½ cup plain flour
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 90 g butter, melted and cooled
- icing sugar, to dust
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Preheat oven to 180°C. Lightly grease a 12-hole madeleine tin (see Note) and dust lightly with flour. Shake out the excess.
Using electric beaters, beat the egg, caster sugar and vanilla together for 2 minutes, until pale, frothy and increased in volume.
Sift the flour and baking powder together and gently fold into the egg mixture. Add the melted butter, and fold to combine.
Spoon the batter evenly into the prepared tin. Bake for 8 minutes or until puffed and firm to a gentle touch. Stand in the tin for 3 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Dust lightly with icing sugar to serve.
• Madeleines are made in grooved tins which give the characteristic shell shape, but you could use shallow round-bottomed patty tins for these. They should be 2 tbsp capacity each hole. You can replace the vanilla essence with finely grated lemon or orange rind, if you like.
Recipe and image from Merle’s Country Show Baking: and Other Favourites by Merle Parrish (Random House Australia, $39.95, pbk).