Sunday, December 12, 2010

Madeleines


"Lady In Blue" Acrylic 18"x24" - By Mary Maki Rae (c)
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I've been re-reading "Swann In Love" from: "Swann's Way" By Marcel Proust recently - enjoying it emmensely.
It made me think of those too. . .too famous "Madeleine" cookies. I've never made them - so I thought I might give them a try for Christmas - as I always make some cookies for sure this time of the year.
Following is a Recipe that I rediscovered in one of my books - It sounds just right- (However - at the moment I don't know quite where to find 24 lemon balm leaves-!)

These little cakes originated long ago in the Lorraine region in France.
As a gala dinner was being prepared for a Duke - the pastry maker stormed off in a huff.  A young girl appretice offered to bake the cookies that her Grandmother had taught her to make.  When they were presented and tasted - the Duke ordered that they be named after - Madeleine-!
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MADELEINES

3 Eggs, plus 1 Egg Yolk
2/3 Cup Superfine Sugar
2 Tablespoons fresh Lemon Juice
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Salt
1-1/4 Cups sifted all-purpose Flour
1/2 Cup (1 stick) unsalted Butter, melted
24 Lemon Balm Leaves

Preheat oven to 375 F. - Spray Madeleine molds with a nonstick spray coating.   Place molds on a baking sheet.

In small bowl of electric mixer - beat Eggs & Egg Yolk with Sugar at high speed until pale & thick. About 5 minutes.

Beat in Lemon Juice -  Vanilla - & Salt.  Using a rubber spatula - gradually fold in Flour until well mixed. Drizzle the Butter over batter & gently fold in.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap & refrigerate the batter for 30 minutes.

Spoon 1 Tablespoon of the batter into each prepared mold.
Do not spread the batter out.  Top each mound of batter with a lemon balm leaf.  Spoon 1 Tablespoon batter over each leaf to cover.

Bake the Madeleins for 20 to 25 minutes - until the edges are lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center of one Madelein comes out clean.

Carefully loosen edges of the cookies with a small knife.
Invert them onto a wire rack to cool.  Makes 2 dozen.

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The recipe above is from:
"The Heart of France" - Published by Hearst Books - 2000
(Also check out the Film: "Swann In Love" 1984 R - Starring:
  Jeremy Irons as Charles Swann & Ornella Muti as Odette)
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NOTE: I did make this recipe - The "Cookies" turned out like little lemon pound "Cakes".  Instead of the lemon balm leaves - I used one teaspoon each of minced "Candied Lemon Zest". You could just serve them with Tea to dip in as Monsieur Swan so famously did - Or instead - Serve with a Raspberry Sauce and Whipped Cream ( or a Vanilla Ice Cream with Swirls of Caramel like: "Dulce de Leche"). Following is a Recipe for the Raspberry Sauce.

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 RASPBERRY SAUCE
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1/2 Cup Orange Juice
2 Teaspoons Cornstarch
2 Cups Fresh or Frozen Raspberries
2 Tablespoons Sugar - or to taste
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In a Sauce Pan - whisk together orange juice & corn starch
until cornstarch is dissolved.
Add Raspberries & Cook on low heat -
stirring constantly - until the sauce thickens.
Stir in Sugar & remove from heat.
Serve Warm - at room temperature - or chilled.
If refrigerated - sauce will keep for about two weeks.
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Recipe from: Moosewood Restaurant Book of Desserts 


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