Sunday 6 July 2014

Matcha Madeleines (GF)

Matcha Madeleines (gf).  Note the "hump"...a good thing 
Madeleines are one of the most beautiful little cakes I've ever seen and positively scream of lazy days on the patio.  Perfect for afternoon tea or coffee.
Summer is a funny time of year for me.  It's a time when I actually get to LIVE like a regular human being and it's a time when I actually feel like I have a life.  I delve back into my hobbies: baking, photography, running, knitting and all things crafty. Don't get me wrong, I do live during the school year too; but I have absolutely no time to actually do the things I love to do in my spare time like read and immerse myself in my passions.  Most of my spare time from September to June is spent marking English essays, shuttling kids to extracurricular activities and prepping for teaching.  All of my hobbies fall to the wayside. Summer for me is a time for HUGE professional development.  I get to recharge.  I get re-inspired.

my rarely-used nonstick madeleines pan

an espresso from my Gaggia Titanium. good crema. perfect with a madeleine
During summer, I begin to shed the "working weight" I carry from November to June.  I'm a good 10-15 pounds lighter by the end of summer because I'm simply able to do all the activities I can't do in the winter!  
I used the good stuff here: Trader Joe's unsalted butter 
These past few years have been rough with the full-time load teaching/marking and mentoring for the district but the crazy thing is I simply LOVE teaching English and I also LOVE mentoring educators in Learning Technologies.   I have one more year in my contract with the district in the part time tech mentoring position.  The best part of mentoring other educators has been visiting the classrooms all around our district; being able to teach students K-12 in their classrooms and giving workshops to teachers.  The personal connections I've made have been so fulfilling and as I have one foot in the classroom and one in the district position, I have come to realize a few things from my experiences and 23 years teaching.  BC's public education system rocks. We have passionate teachers out there.  These teachers are reaching out to me and asking for learning tech mentoring to help engage their students in a meaningful way.  These teachers care about readying their learners for the 21st Century...even though they are in classrooms designed for 20th Century learning. I truly have so much fun on my classroom visits.  The students in the various schools I've visited actually remember me when they spot me in the hallways months later.  I mean really...they call me by my name!   I teach them how to create iMovie projects to show their learning, I help them learn how to blog or create an iBook anthology of their poetry or science project.   Everything I do is fun and educational.  I am going to miss this job so much next year when my contract's up.  I don't know what I'll do.  I might have to start baking and blogging again to fill the void.
melt that butter down in the microwave
Which brings me to today's post:  Matcha Madeleines! 

I've been meaning to experiment with matcha in my madeleines...but of course I've been trying to stick to my gluten free diet so I needed to make sure the flour I used was GF.  I used my trusty all-purpose Sweet Rice Flour GF flour blend in this recipe and adapted a Greenspan recipe for this purpose.
here's the 7 yr old taking pics for me.
my cool new camera: the FujiX100S

Proust wouldn't stick his nose up at these matcha madeleines. They are slightly bitter from the matcha, and they go wonderfully with your morning espresso
Matcha Madeleines (GF) adapted from Dorie Greenspan's Paris Sweets

3/4 cup (105 grams) GF Flour Blend [OR all-purpose flour if you're not GF] *NB see bottom of post for GF flour blend recipe
1/2 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1/2 cup (100 grams) sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 tablespoons organic matcha (spend big bucks and splurge on the good stuff)
5 tablespoons (2 1/2 ounces; 70 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  1. Sift together the GF flour, matcha powder and baking powder.  
    mix the (gf) flour mixture with the matcha powder ensuring there are no matcha lumps  
  2. Working in a mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs and sugar together on medium-high speed until they thicken and lighten in colour, 2 to 4 minutes.  
    1. Switch to a large rubber spatula and gently fold in the dry ingredients, followed by the melted butter [I prefer a whisk].
    2. Cover the batter with plastic wrap, pressing the wrap against the surface to create and airtight seal, and chill for at least 3 hours, preferably longer--chilling helps the batter develop its characteristic crown, known as the hump or bump.  
      that's one thick batter.  after refrigeration for at least 3 hours, it's even stiffer. btw, you DO have to refrigerate the batter for at least 3 hours to get that tell-tale hump in your madeleines.  
    3. Center a rack in the oven and preheat to 400degrees F.  Spray the pan with nonstick spray (I used coconut oil spray from Costco).  
    4. Divide the batter among the molds, filling them almost to the top.  
    5. Bake large madeleines for 11 to 13 minutes [mine took 11 min], small ones for 8-10 minutes, or until the cookies are puffed and golden and spring back when touched.
      fresh out of the oven, they have the tell-tale hump!
    6. Pull the pan from the oven and remove cookies by rapping pan against the counter or gently running a butter knife around the edges of the cookies.  Allow the madeleines to cool on a cooling rack.  They can be served ever so slightly warm or at room temperature.

    2 1/4 cups superfine Thai Rice Flour (Asian market)
    1/4 cup potato starch
    2/3 cup tapioca starch
    3/4 cup sweet rice flour (Thai brands are best)
    1/3 cup cornstarch
    2 teaspoons xanthum gum
    • In a large airtight container, combine the flours together well.  I use a large wire whisk to mix the flours thoroughly.  Be particularly vigilant about distributing the xanthum gum as it is a small quantity compared to the rest of the flours.
    • Use this GF Flour Blend in place of regular cake flour or all-purpose flour.  
    • You do not have to worry about sifting as it's not lumpy
    • You do not have to worry about overbeating as there's no gluten to develop.


    Unknown said...

    I've always wanted to try Matcha, more for curiosity than anything else.

    These look like a super way to use them!

    Cakebrain said...

    Avanika, matcha tastes lovely and delicate. If you'd had green tea before, it's sort of like that. If you're unsure if you'll like matcha, you can use just 1 tablespoon so it's not as strong. :)


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