Put a holiday twist on the classic French madeleines adding gingerbread spice and orange zest.
I’ve raved over the classic French Madeleines more than once in the past. Obviously, with a great reason as they are totally delicious. Plus, these traditional shell shaped little cakes are perfectly adaptable to any occasion.
Originally made of butter, sugar, eggs and flour, there is hardly no limitation to enhance these delicate and buttery little cakes with additional flavours.
With the holiday season just around the corner, I love to spruce up my food with the flavours typically associated with the season – like cinnamon, cardamom, star anise or indeed gingerbread spice. This will actually work with a lot of different foods, both savoury and sweet. But is it nearly unbeaten with cake or dessert.
For the gingerbread-orange madeleines, I used ready-made gingerbread spice. Which here in Germany is available in stores throughout the Christmas season. That said, the classic Lebkuchen mix, the German equivalent to gingerbread spice, is made with a slightly different mix of spices. It includes cinnamon, allspice, gloves, coriander, star anise, ginger, mace, cardamon and nutmeg.
So if you want to follow the German Lebkuchen madeleines recipe, you can simply mix the requested spices together. Otherwise, you can likewise use the classic gingerbread mixture. It will add a slightly different taste profile to the Madeleines, but they will no doubt taste just as great and festive!
By the way, you can keep Madeleines for one or two days. But the truth is, they will never taste as deliciously then eating them fresh out of the oven when they are still warm.
Recipe: Gingerbread-Orange Madeleines
For 30 pieces
220 g melted butter
250 g sugar
220 g all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
pinch of salt
grated zest of 1 orange
2 teaspoons gingerbread spice
powdered sugar and cinnamon for dusting
In a large bowl, mix sugar, flour, baking powder and salt.
Add eggs, melted butter, orange zest and gingerbread spice. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, whisk together until obtaining a smooth batter. Refrigerate for 60 minutes.
Preheat oven to 200°C.
Grease the moulds of a Madeleines baking pan with butter, then lightly dust with flour. Spoon the batter into the moulds, filling them up to two-thirds (one generous teaspoon).
Bake for 10-12 minutes.
Take out of the oven and immediately invert the pan to remove the madeleines from the pan. Don’t let them cool in the pan, as they will quickly stick once they start cooling.
Mix a tablespoon of powdered sugar with a teaspoon of ground cinnamon. Dust the madeleines with the mix.
Madeleines are best enjoyed still warm out of the oven, so serve immediately.