Madeleines, those quintessential French treats, are delicious all by their buttery selves. But they are the height of gourmet teatime snacks when infused with the earthy aroma of truffles. Inspired by the ambrosial truffle madeleines we gobbled at French bakery Libertable in Tokyo, we decided to experiment with our own version. These truffle madeleines make excellent edible gifts, but only for people who are really nice to you, since the truffle products used in this recipe don’t come cheap. To amplify the earthy flavour, we also added some porcini powder. The batter has to sit for at least eight hours (so it can rest and dome beautifully when baked), but actual baking takes a mere eight minutes. Simply pop it into your oven just before serving and your home will be perfumed with the scent of butter and truffles.
Makes 24 large madeleines or about 38 small ones
170g Butter, softened (plus more to grease the moulds)
4 Large eggs (weighing 60g each)
½ cup Caster sugar
2 tbsp Dark brown sugar
½ cup Truffle honey*
1 cup Plain flour
½ cup Cake flour
2 tsp Baking powder
¼ tsp Truffle salt*
1 tsp Porcini powder (grind whole dried mushrooms)
3 tbsp Black truffle paste*
1. Begin a day ahead. Melt butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Cook until some of the white milk solids fall to the bottom of the skillet and everything turns a rich hazelnut brown, about 5 mins. Strain the browned butter through a fine sieve into a small bowl. Set aside.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the eggs, sugars, and truffle honey until pale and foamy, about 2 mins.
3. Sift both flours, baking powder, truffle salt and porcini powder over the egg mixture and gently fold in using a rubber spatula.
4. Fold in the browned butter till you get a smooth, shiny batter, then fold in the truffle paste.
5. Cover the batter with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or overnight. This batter can keep for up to 3 days in the fridge.
6. Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease the moulds with softened butter and spoon or pipe the batter evenly into the moulds. Bake for 8 mins, or until golden brown.
7. Transfer to a wire rack to cool for 5 mins, then unmould the cakes and let them cool completely on the rack.
If gifting these babies, add this note: “Warm in an oven preheated at 150°C for 5 minutes. Consume within 2 days.”
*Truffle honey, salt and paste can be bought at gourmet shops like Culina.