Thursday, 4 September 2014

Ombre Lemon Madeleines with Beetroot Coloring

I bought a Madeleine pan and thought why not make some madeleines for the teachers on Teacher's Day. In the midst of my busy mooncake making week, I thought I might just be able to manage a quick bake. I quickly did a search for rainbow madeleines and was totally charmed by Sugarswings' beautiful madeleines. Here's my humble beginner's attempt at fanciful madeleines!

After a couple of failed attempts, I finally came up with something decent :p. Full of lemony flavor, crispy like cookies on the edges and soft like cake on the insides. There are so many variations in the way that the batter is made (with or without egg separation, drizzling melted butter in at the end or creaming it with sugar at the beginning) that I decided to stick with what I am familiar with - the chiffon method.

I adapted the recipe from here.

Ingredients (makes 10 madeleines):
1 large egg yolk (65g egg)
30g caster sugar
50g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
50g cake flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
Zest of 1 lemon
12g lemon juice
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tsp beetroot puree with juice*
Red liquid food coloring (optional)

1 egg white
Pinch of cream of tartar
15g caster sugar

1. * Prepare the beetroot juice. You may use artificial coloring and skip this step. You can refer to this post on how to prepare the beetroot puree/juice that can be frozen.

Grease the madeleine pan with melted butter. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius.

Beetroot puree and lemon zest with juice

2. Whisk egg yolk and sugar until it turns pale and creamy. You may want to use the electric mixer for this instead of the hand whisk. Add melted butter and beat until well combined. Take a few minutes to do these two steps. Add  vanilla extract, lemon zest and juice and whisk until combined. Gradually add in sifted flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk until no trace of flour is seen.

3. Divide the egg yolk batter into 3 (or more if you like). Add 1/2 tsp of beetroot puree into one and 1-1.5 tsp into another. Leave one portion plain. You may add a tiny dip of red food coloring into the colored batters as beetroot juice tends to brown a bit when baked.

4. Prepare the meringue. In a clean metal bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the egg white until foamy. Add cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar and beat until stiff peaks form and the bowl can be overturned and the meringue doesn't fall out.

5. Quickly but gently fold in the meringue in three additions in each of the ombre colors. Transfer the batters into piping bags or ziplock bags. Pipe the batter into the madeleine pan. You may make horizontal or vertical ombre patterns. Fill the mould until about 3/4 full.

6. Bang the pan on the table a few times to release air bubbles trapped in the batter. Bake for about 9-12 minutes or until the edges start to brown a little. Do not overbake or the patterns will not be obvious. Cool in the pan for a minute before turning out onto cooling rack to cool. Store in airtight container when completely cooled. Best eaten fresh but can keep for a couple of days.

*phew* these don't look too bad

Madeleine purists may say that this is not proper madeleine as there was no attempt to chill the batter to create the characteristic humps on the madeleines,  and a bit of baking powder was used as leavening agent. But I say, who cares as long as it is yummy and looks fine :p.

Blessed teacher's day to all teachers!

With love,
Phay Shing


  1. I like that ... "who cares as long as it is yummy and looks fine" ...these Ombre Lemon Madeleines are so pretty ^-^!

  2. Thanks Karen :). Sometimes if we get too perfectionist with the bakes it takes the joy and fun out of it.

    I just realised I should have checked out your blog and Zoe's for custard mooncake filling recipe! Took a stab in the dark and anyhow pick one. Think I would have preferred yours. Mine is fine but a little on the dry side.