Welcome to Natasha's Creative Confections! If you have stumbled upon this blog page, then you're in for a real treat! One of my favorite things to do is bake. If you choose to read on you will find pictures and recipes of some of the fabulous treats that I have created. So take a look around and enjoy!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Chocolate Dipped Madeleine's

Most of you have probably heard of Madeleine's, but if you haven't, they are an amazing, delicate little French cookie. They are one of my favorites. I don't see them too much anywhere. I know that they sell them in packs of 3 at Starbucks, but other than that, they seem rare to find.

I actually had a very hard time finding the Madeleine pan when I first wanted to make these cookies. I looked all over and absolutely no kitchen store carried them! I finally found one online, so I bought it from there. I almost wish I had bought 2 pans because they only hold 12 cookies (unless you get the mini-sized pan). Next time, I think I'll double the recipe!

One thing I particularly love about these cookies is that they have a very unique shape. They remind me of seashells! I also love that they are considered a cookie, but they have a very cake-like texture. They also just slide right out of the pan once they're baked, which makes clean up super easy and they don't lose their shape!

They are just so different from any other kind of cookie and once you try them, I think you'll really enjoy them. Some popular flavors to try are Earl Grey, Traditional Lemon and Chocolate! This recipe below comes from Dorie Greenspan's Baking, From My Home To Yours. It is excellent! Enjoy :)

- 2/3 c. all-purpose flour
- 3/4 tsp. baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 c. sugar
- grated zest of 1 lemon
- 2 large eggs, at room temp.
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 3/4 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- melted chocolate (I just used semi-sweet)
- confectioner's sugar, for dusting

1. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
2. Working in a mixer bowl, rub the sugar and lemon zest together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and fragrant. Add the eggs to the bowl. Working with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs and sugar together on med-high speed until pale, thick and light, 2-3 mins. Beat in the vanilla. With a rubber spatula, very gently fold in the dry ingredients, followed by the melted butter. Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the batter and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or for up to 2 days. The long chill period will help the batter form the hump that is characteristic of madeleines. (You can also scoop the batter right into the pan, cover and refrigerate, and then bake right from the refrigerator. Be sure to prep your pan properly before though!)

3. Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 400 degrees. Butter the molds and dust the insides with flour and tap out the excess. If you have a non-stick pan, lightly butter or coat with vegetable cooking spray.
4. Spoon the batter into the molds, filling each almost to the top. Don't worry about spreading the batter evenly because the oven's heat will take care of it. Bake 10-12 minutes (or minis for 8 mins.), until they are golden. Remove the pan from the oven and release the madeleines from the molds by rapping the edge of the pan against the counter (do this gently! i lost 2 because they slid out so easily)
5. Transfer cookies to a rack to cool to just warm or room temperature.

For chocolate coating: Melt about 1/2-1 cup chocolate of your choice slowly in the microwave, stirring occasionally. Once melted, carefully remove and take a madeleine and dip one side into chocolate. Place on a cookie sheet covered with a piece of wax or parchment paper. After all the cookies have been dipped, lightly sprinkle with powdered sugar and then place in the refrigerator for the chocolate to harden, around 15 minutes.

If you don't want to dip in chocolate, just sprinkle with a little powdered sugar :)

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