Sunday, June 20, 2010
SMS: Chestnut Honey Madeleines
Shortly after Josh and I moved in together, we went on a shopping spree to fill in the gaps for our shared kitchen. Although I did cook (not as much as I do now), I had always lived with roommates and had limited kitchen equipment of my own. And Josh didn’t cook at all, unless you count heating up bags of frozen pasta, so his kitchen was pretty sparse. He didn’t even have a cutting board until I came along – you should see him now though, he has excellent knife skills. Anyway, when we went shopping, one of the items I deemed *essential* was a Madeleine pan. Actually two: both mini and standard. Did I really think I was going to be making the tender little cakes all the time? This was a couple years ago and I can probably count on one hand how many times the pans have been used, so I was happy to see this week’s Sweet Melissa selection was Chestnut Honey Madeleines and I would have an opportunity to use the pans.
I was worried that the recipe would involve chestnuts, which would be impossible to find this time of year, but it actually called for chestnut honey. I just used clover honey, which seemed to work fine. The recipe did call for roasted hazelnuts. I was very happy that last time I needed hazelnuts, I roasted and peeled the skins (tedious!) off extra nuts, which saved a lot of time when I wanted to make these cookies. I made a half recipe, which yielded a dozen minis and 6 standard size Madeleines. The recipe says to place the oven racks in the top and bottom thirds of the oven, but it did not specify to rotate in the middle of baking, which I should have known better to do, because the Madeleines on the lower level were quite a bit darker. Luckily they still tasted fine, just not as pretty.
Hazelnuts are so often paired with chocolate (also delicious) that I’m glad they had a chance to be the star of this recipe and I really enjoyed the flavor in these little cakes. The recipe was heavy in sugar and low in honey, so I’m curious how they’d be if the recipe could be tweaked to add a more prominent honey flavor. We rated this recipe a 7.5 (approaching on 8) for Deliciousness and I gave them a 2.5 for Effort, for an EDR 3. Thank you to Debbie of Café Chibita for selecting this yummy treat and giving me an opportunity to use my Madeleine pans. The recipe will be posted on Debbie’s site and visit the Sweet Melissa site to see what the other bakers thought of this selection.
I’d also like to wish a happy Father’s Day to my dad (and all other dads out there). Eloise says happy Father’s Day to Josh. Seriously, she loves me (anyone holding bread or willing to pet her, actually), but she’s really a daddy’s girl!