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pretty things

Less than a week ago, I had never even tried a madeleine. I have now eaten some absurd number thanks to Jill’s birthday last week. Since she loves the things, I decided to make her a batch and give her the pan. It’s kind of hard to justify buying one-purpose kitchen things for yourself, isn’t it?

Having never made madeleines, I turned to Emma’s blog, Of Agates and Madeleines, because if someone has the very specific thing that you want to make in their blog title, that might be a good place to start. She had made these pretty pumpkin spice madeleines a couple months ago (hey, she’s a string player, too!) and since she used Dorie Greenspan’s recipe as a base, I decided to use that as mine as well.

madeleines got back

You know me…I have this tendency to want to make a recipe different even if I’ve never tried it before. Jill really likes coffee and cardamom (and coffee with cardamom), so I came up with that flavor combo pretty quickly. The only problem is that I didn’t really know how much coffee (brewed? ground? instant?) or cardamom to use. The closest recipe I could find for coffee madeleines was for mocha ones and since it used a tablespoon of finely ground espresso, I figured I’d do the same, but increase it by half. Also I started out with a teaspoon of ground cardamom and then added an extra quarter of it after sampling the batter. 

So this batch turned out as they should have (bump and all!), but I wasn’t convinced by the flavor. The coffee barely came through, so they mainly just tasted like cardamom-spiced madeleines. Jill liked them, but I wanted to try another batch of something a little less experimental…but still kind of different.

coffee cardamom madeleines

This time I took another Dorie Greenspan recipe and changed it up a little bit. Instead of ginger, cinnamon, and cloves, I used all ginger, and then swapped the orange zest for lemon. I also came up with the brilliant idea (if I say so myself) of browning the butter because that can only improve things, right? I made these guys smaller too because standard-sized madeleines are pretty hefty.

Verdict? I think these were a little more successful, but just tasted like lemon madeleines. Couldn’t detect the ginger or brown butter which is sad, but that didn’t stop me from eating a billion of them.


Can I also say that I decreased the oven temperature by 100 degrees and baking time by 3 minutes?? I used my parents’ oven which possibly gets hotter than mine, but maybe it also had to do with the dark madeleine pan? Though now that I think of it, I didn’t decrease the oven temp with the first batch, just the baking time. Weird.

Any favorite madeleine recipes out there for Jill to make? I know she likes this one!