My Madeleines aren’t Madeleines at all, since they lack the distinctive scalloped shape of the storied little cakes. I don’t have a Madeleine pan and I (surprisingly) didn’t run out and buy one in anticipation of this week’s French Fridays recipe. I tried to lend my version a little of the original’s lustre, though, baking them in silver foil miniature muffin cups. Literary lustre replaced with literal lustre.
Dorie’s version is also a variation in flavour from the traditional lemon-zested cake, so perhaps it’s fitting that they have their own shape. These tiny domes are flavoured with orange zest, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. They also have a surprising, mild bite from the pinch of pepper added to the batter. I chilled the batter for three hours before using it, but it continues to improve if you rest it in the fridge for even longer.
The cakes have a little give in the centre and a little crispness around the edges. The sponge is infused with orange flavour and it’s as though the spices are suspended throughout. They’re lovely with tea and can, if you’re not careful, give you pretensions of literary greatness.
You can find many other blogged descriptions of this week’s FFWD recipe here: Honey-Spiced Madeleines