Madeleines are one of my favorite little treats! If you don’t know, madeleines are a cute little French dessert that look like cookies but are actually more similar to a small cake. They’re perfect with your morning coffee or as an afternoon dessert. These brown butter chai madeleines are my new favorite! The cake is spiced to perfection and then dunked in a cardamom glaze. So good!
Madeleine Tips & Tricks
Browning the butter is optional….but not really! You know I put brown butter in EVERYTHING and it goes so well with the spices in these madeleines!
Make the brown butter: In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once melted, stir frequently and watch closely for the formation of brown specs on the bottom of the pan and a nutty aroma. Once you see brown specs, stir for just a few more seconds (it browns super quickly). Remove from the heat and immediately pour into a different bowl to prevent it from burning. Let the butter cool slightly (5-10 minutes) before using.
Madeleines are known for their classic humped back! If you’ve ever watched The Great British Baking Show, you know what’s up. One of the most important steps to getting the hump is beating the eggs long enough. You want to beat the eggs and sugar together for at least 8 minutes (put a timer on because it feels like forever). After 8-10 minutes the mixture will be very pale and thick.
Chilling the batter is a super important part of this recipe! Letting the batter chill helps the madeleines rise properly in the oven (however if it chills too long the butter will solidify and then they won’t rise enough). I find that 45 minutes is the perfect amount of chill time, but you definitely want to stay within the 30-60 minute window.
Sadly you can’t make madeleines without a madeleine pan. But if you’re like me and love collecting kitchen gear, I highly recommend my USA Pan Madeleine pan*! It’s nonstick and works great! Even though it’s nonstick I still like to brush the wells with melted butter before baking! It helps the madeleines slide right out and get nice and crisp on the top.
These brown butter chai madeleines are best eaten the same day (with a big cup of chai) but will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for 2-3 days.
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Brown Butter Chai Madeleines
- ½ cup unsalted butter, browned
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup cake flour, substitute all purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-2 teaspoons milk, until desired consistency is reached
- Make the brown butter: In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Once melted, stir frequently and watch closely for the formation of brown specs on the bottom of the pan and a nutty aroma. Once you see brown specs, stir for just a few more seconds (it browns super quickly). Remove from the heat and immediately pour into a different bowl to prevent it from burning. Let the butter cool slightly (5-10 minutes) before using.
- Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the eggs and sugar together on high speed for 8-10 minutes or until the mixture is thick, very pale, and forms ribbons when you lift the beaters. Add in the vanilla extract and beat until combined.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and spices.
- Using a spatula, gently fold the flour mixture into the egg mixture. Then gently fold the melted butter into the batter. It will take a minute or two to fully incorporate, so just keep gently mixing it together until fully combined. The batter should be thick and shinny.
- Cover the bowl and let the batter chill in the fridge for 45 minutes.
- During the last few minutes of chilling, preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Lightly brush your madeleine pan with 1-2 tablespoons of melted butter, then scoop a generous tablespoon of batter into the center of each well.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the madeleines are lightly browned.
- Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.
- Whisk together all of the glaze ingredients until fully combined and smooth. You may need to add an extra 1-2 teaspoons of milk or cream to reach your desired consistency.
- Dip cooled madeleines in the glaze and enjoy!
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