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La Madeleine

Lately my fascination with food has led me to discover that I actually do enjoy baking. I always thought baking was boring and time consuming, whereas creating a feast was exciting and fast paced. On a particularly rainy Saturday evening, my parents asked if I could have my little sister sleepover since they had to go out of town. I decided we should bake something new and fun! Madeleines have always been a yummy treat, yet I had never baked any.
My sister arrived and was all too excited as usual, something about sleeping over at your older sisters place has always been a treat for her and my other sisters; I am the oldest of four girls. Yes I know what you're thinking, my poor father! Don't worry, he's fine, grey hair, but fine!

I quickly told her my genius plan for the evening and we got right to work. First things first, finding the perfect recipe. We got out my laptop and spent the next half hour googling hundreds of recipes all claiming to be the best madeleines. The trick is deciphering the good from the bad, but how do you know which is best? I always seem to trail off the known websites and search through all the results before choosing the best looking recipe.
For our Madeleines, we chose a recipe that was similar to all the others except the mixing instructions were more detailed. Letting the eggs warm to room temp on the counter before starting this recipe was the one step that all the other recipes omitted. I figured this was an important step, especially in French baking, as I have made Macaroons in the past and they call for warm egg whites. The warmer the egg the fluffy the cake!

We cracked the eggs and melted the butter and while we let them warm and cool respectively, we discussed all different flavours of these little treats we could make. We decided to keep it simple and made classic vanilla Madeleines.

While gently folding the flour into our egg I suddenly realized that I didn't have the proper Madeleine molds. Muffin tins to the rescue! We buttered the muffin cups, as I was worried that the cake would stick, and continued our final preparations. As we watched the Madeleines bake, inspiration hit me. These little fluffy cakes can be made in all different flavors and decorated in all different ways. Hmmm, the new cupcake?
To my surprise the Madeleines did not stick at all. The baked up light and fluffy and because I used a strong vanilla the flavor was just delicious.
I must say the Madeleines were a hit, we served them up with a London Fog, earl grey tea with vanilla and cream, and truly enjoyed our treat.

La Madeleine
1/2 cup flour
2 eggs
3/4 teaspoon vanilla (the best you can get)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter
1/3 cup granulated sugar
Powdered sugar for decorating.

Crack eggs and let sit on the counter for about 20 minutes. Melt butter and let cool aside. You will need a mixer for this recipe with your whisk attachment. In your mixing bowl add vanilla, cracked eggs and salt. Whisking constantly, slowly add granulated sugar and continue whisking for approximately 10 minutes creating a fluffy base for the Madeleine batter.
Gently fold 1/3 of the flour into the fluffy egg batter and continue until all the flour has been added. Gently and carefully pour the butter inside the bowl but around the edges and incorporate it gently. When butter is mixed, pour batter into buttered molds or small muffin tins and bake at 375 for around 10 minutes, watch them they may bake quicker.


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