Saturday, March 23, 2013

Almond Lemon Madeleines

I don't know why  it took me so long so try out my new madeleine pan that I got for Christmas, but for some reason, it took me three months.  Now I'm wondering what I was waiting for, because madeleines are awesome.

To back the story up a bit, I did ask my parents for a madeleine pan for Christmas, because as I have said before, although pans or machines that serve only one use might be a waste of kitchen space, it upsets me if I feel like the lack of an item is prohibiting me from trying out a recipe.  Hence my linzer cookie cutters, doughnut pan, bamboo steamer, mini whoopie pie pan - you get the idea.  So I absolutely needed a madeleine pan.  Madeleines are little cookies, usually made with ground nuts and citrus flavor of some sort, and to be truly madeleines, they must be small and shaped like a shell.  Without a pan with small shell-shaped molds, you are just making lemony nutty cookies.

So a couple weeks ago I decided the time had come to make these cookies.  The first step is to grind almonds with sugar, which gives the cookies a great nutty taste.  They are also very lemony due to lemon zest and lemon juice.  They are sweet, buttery, nutty and lemony - can you think of  a better cookie?

I will confess that my first batch of cookies weren't so pretty.  I overfilled the molds and they rose up to look more like misshapen baby fists than shells!  You don't want to pile the batter into the molds; just barely fill the molds and they will come out perfect.

This is actually the recipe that came on the pan packaging.  I see no reason to search for another one, because these are excellent.  Mom said they were the best cookies I have made, and lots of them were devoured that afternoon!  Good thing the recipe makes 72 little cookies!


almond lemon madeleines
from the packaging from Norpro's madeleine pan


1 cup almonds
1 cup sugar
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon rind
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice


1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Spray madeleine pan molds with nonstick spray.

2)  Using chopper or food processor, grind the almonds with the sugar until very fine in texture.

3) Cream butter.  Continue beating butter, adding almond and sugar mixture gradually.  Beat until mixture is light and fluffy. 

4)  Add in eggs one at a time, beating until completely combined with other ingredients.

5) Add and beat in lemon rind.

6) In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together. Add flour mixture to butter mixture, alternating gradually with lemon juice.  Begin and end with flour mixture, mixing well after each addition.

7) Spread batter into the molds of the madeleine pan, removing any excess from edges of pan.  Bake in lower third of the oven for 8 minutes, or until golden brown around edges.  Turn madeleines onto a cooling rack.  Wash and dry the pan, and repeat the process.

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