WE'VE MOVED

Hello!

Thank you for the amazing 8 years here at A Baked Creation, we can't thank you enough for the memories! But we've decided to move over to a new site - Sincerely, Syl. Please join us there for future posts on all the things you loved here!

Sincerely,
Syl

Friday, November 28, 2014

Classic French Madeleines

How have you been? I know it's been quite around here, it's been quite hectic at work. Worst of all, I met my nemesis, the flu. The flu kicked me down and knocked me out for a week. I'm still fighting the after effects, but I think I am finally winning.

The wedding plans are also coming along (mostly?). I don't think there's anything left for us to do this year. All the things that need to be booked ahead of time are done (I hope, I think?), so we just wait until we're closer to the date. I'd like to think we're ahead of schedule or at least on track! I wish I could tell you more, but I'm an odd believer that I'll jinx it if I do. Some things were too good to be true and then fell through, so I'll wait until it's all over before I say any more!

I'm still loving little madeleines though. These tiny tea cakes make good afternoon snacks. I hope you all get madeleine pans this holiday and make these tasty little morsels.
Classic French Madeleines
Recipe from Madeleines: Elegant French Tea Cakes to Bake and Share
(Makes about 24 regular or 48 minis)

1 stick of unsalted butter + 4 tablespoons for the pan
1 cup of all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
3 large eggs
2/3 cup of granulated sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoon of fresh lemon zest
  1. Preheat the oven at 175°C or 350°F.
  2. Place the butter in a microwavable bowl and melt on lower power for about a minute. Let it cool to room temperature. Butter up with the 4 tablespoons! Make sure you brush soften butter into all the nooks and crannies of the pan for easy lift up after.
  3. Using a mixer, beat the eggs and sugar together until it is light and fluffy, about 3 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add in vanilla extract and lemon zest, mix for another minute until combined. Fold in the flour and baking powder. Don't over mix at this stage, the flour just needs to be incorporated completely.
  5. Use a spoon or scoop to fill the pan molds until they're almost full. You can smooth out the batter if you like, but I find that it'll melt nicely into the mold in the oven's hot temperatures.
  6. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes for regular sized madeleines and 5 to 6 for the mini sizes. They should puff up to show that signature madeleine hump and be golden in colour.
  7. Remove from the oven and let the madeleines cool. Eat them right away. Seriously, they're best when they're fresh!
I'm thinking these will make great gifts this holiday at the office. I've made macarons two years in a row, it's time to switch it up!
One more thing, don't skip the lemon zest, it gives the cakes such a great boost in flavour. Not to mention, the aroma!!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Madeleines

Madeleines . . . the first time I had memorable madeleines was at Café Boulud. They were sitting in a warm nest of linen napkins, and even though I was full from the meal, I devoured them.

Little miniature tea cakes, madeleines are described as "small, shell-shaped cakes made of flour, eggs, sugar, and butter and baked in molds." I think we can all agree that we could use more madeleines in our lives, so I couldn't wait to look through a whole book about them!
Beautiful endpapers should always be acknowledged.
If I woke up to that basket of madeleines every morning, I would be happy and content. All would be right.
I quickly flipped to chapter three, dark and deluxe chocolate madeleines!

Madeleines: Elegant French Tea Cakes to Bake and Share
Written by Barbara Feldman Morse
Photographs by Steve Legato
ISBN 13: 9781594747403
ISBN 10: 1594747407
Publisher: Quirk Books
Hardcover: 224 pages

Let's give the dark chocolate espresso madeleines a try. The author mentions that this recipe was adapted from her award-winning recipe that is a mix between brownies, fudge, and dense chocolate cake.
I used a double boiler and a stand mixer to create the batter. A lot of butter, sugar, semisweet chocolate chips, espresso powder, eggs, flour, and cocoa powder went into this.
This particular batter was dark, thick, and shiny. It also doesn't rise much, so you can fill the molds to the top without worrying about overflow.
The espresso flavor really stands out, the only thing I wished was that my mold was more defined. I felt that they didn't produce enough of a shell imprint on the madeleines. So if you're on the search for madeleine pans, get ones with more defined edges!

If you're not picky on how they look, then it doesn't matter because they taste great anyways. Looking over the table of contents, I would want to try these recipes next: the classic French madeleines, lemon poppy seed, chai tea, peanut butter and jelly, sunshine, molten, peaches and cream, snowball, fresh lemon drop, browned butter pecan, gruyère and rosemary, brie-stuffed, caramelized onion and asiago, and banana foster. As you can see, there are savory and appetizer madeleines!

Disclaimer: A review copy of Madeleines was sent to me for review from Eric Smith at Quirk Books. Thank you! No incentives were used to produce a positive review of this book.
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