I’ve always been naturally inclined to love anyone or anything with the name Madeleine. This is because I used to be obsessed with the cartoon “Madeline” as a young girl. I loved to watch the 12 little French girls go through daily life in Paris and experience French cultural traditions, such as enjoying a gouter, or late-afternoon snack, like most French children do. Le gouter can be anything sweet, like a chocolate biscuit, bread with jam, or even these honey and orange madeleines.
The first time I had a madeleine, I wasn’t particularly impressed. I think the madeleine I tried was from one of those Costco packs, and I remember the madeleine being really dry and dense. What’s so special about these? I thought. And then one day, I decided to make madeleines at home. The madeleines were so moist and lovely, I could hardly believe that these simple French cakes could taste so different from one recipe to another. While my previously shared recipe for classic madeleines is fabulous, these honey and orange madeleines are my preferred flavor combination when it comes to these delicate French cakes.
Firstly, the aroma of these honey and orange madeleines is just intoxicating. There’s no doubt that there are honey and orange flavors present in these. And those flavors truly shine through each bite. The honey provides a sweet, floral quality, while the orange provides brightness and slight zing to balance out the flavors. The madeleines are truly addicting; you can’t just have one! You can enjoy these madeleines as is, you can sprinkle them with powdered sugar for a classic approach, or you can dip them in melted chocolate for an indulgent twist. However you decide to finish them, just know that these honey and orange madeleines are going to be a staple in your baking repertoire.
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/8 tsp allspice
- 1/2 a tablespoon orange zest
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and lukewarm
- butter and flour for pan
- powdered sugar and/or melted chocolate (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a madeleine pan with a couple tablespoons of melted butter. Prepare the molds by sprinkling some flour in the pan; shake the pans from side to side and dump excess flour (preparing the pan like this will prevent the madeleines from sticking).
- To a large bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, add the eggs. Beat on medium speed until the eggs are a lighter yellow and foamy - about 3 minutes.
- Add the granulated sugar, honey, allspice, orange zest, and vanilla extract. Note: You might need to warm the honey for 10 to 15 seconds in the microwave to make it pourable. Beat the mixture on medium speed until everything is combined.
- Gradually, on low speed, add in the all-purporse flour until its incorporated. While the speed is still on low, pour in the melted butter. Mix just until the butter has been blended into the batter.
- Bake the madeleines for 7 minutes, then rotate the pan and bake for another 6 minutes. The edges should be golden brown, and the cakes should spring back when you slightly press down on them with your finger. Flip the madeleines out onto a cooling rack, and once cool, sprinkle with powdered sugar or dip in melted chocolate.