Madeleines may look fancy and intricate, but making these perfect little French cakes – complete with their trademark bumps – is a lot easier than baking a large cake!
I’ve partnered with my favourite Natura Sugars to create a series of recipes that heroes the beauty of unrefined sugars. Unrefined sugar has all the beautiful molasses flavour locked into it (instead of refining it out) so if you’re a baker, it means that you can add another layer of flavour to your bakes simply by using really great quality sugar! And when I discovered I don’t have my madeleine recipe up on the blog, I knew that it was the perfect recipe.
This time, I’m putting their Dark Demerara Sugar on a pedestal and marvelling at the fudgy, caramelly flavour it imparts to anything it’s stirred into – including these dainty, light-as-air madeleines. While they may look fancy, madeleines are one of the easier French delicacies to make (compared to the macaron!).
The Perfect Madeleine
You can spot the perfect madeleine with its caramelised edges and the cute little hump it makes on one side. This hump (which I’m pretty sure was created as a mistake) is a quintessential characteristic of a proper madeleine and happens because the cake mixture is chilled and then put into a very hot oven. In any other bake, a hump would be considered a mistake, but here it is celebrated, even.
The best thing about madeleines is the fact that the mixture can be kept in the fridge for a day or two – you can simply bake a batch when the craving strikes! And just imagine the oooh’s and aaaah’s you’ll get if you serve a tray of freshly baked madeleines for dessert at your next dinner party! Even better, serve them with this crazy delicious salted caramel sauce!
- 100g salted butter
- 5g honey
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 65g Natura Sugars Soft Brown sugar
- 100g cake flour
- 4g baking powder
- 15g salted butter, melted
- 50g Natura Sugars Demerara Sugar, for sprinkling
- Melt the butter and honey and set aside.
- In a bowl, beat the eggs and soft brown sugar until very pale and fluffy (ribbon stage). The mixture should leave a trail when you draw a figure 8 in the bowl).
- Add the melted butter and honey and mix quickly. Remove from the stand mixer.
- Finally sift in the flour and baking powder and fold gently to form a smooth batter.
- Place the madeleine mix in a piping bag and refrigerate for at least 2 hours - preferably overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius (180 if you have a fan-forced oven).
- Generously brush the madeleine moulds with melted butter.
- Pipe the madeleine mixture into each mould - filling it 3/4 of the way, sprinkle with the demerara sugar and bake for 6-8 minutes.
- Serve warm sprinkled with more demerara sugar, if desired.
- The batter needs to be cold before it is baked in order for the madeleines to form the trademark bump.
- Madeleines are best served warm, straight from the oven.
- If you wish to flavour the madeleine batter, you can add spices, zest, extracts along with the flour.