"In an old house in Paris that was covered with vines lived twelve little girls in two straight lines.
In two straight lines they broke their bread and brushed their teeth and went to bed.
They smiled at the good and frowned at the bad and sometimes they were very sad.
They left the house at half past nine in two straight lines in rain or shine — the smallest one was Madeline."
From: Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmans
Of course, at that stage in my life, I didn't know that Madeline was anything more than a girl's name.
It wasn't until The Transporter that I had seen a Madeleine in the cookie form. I was intrigued, but since they needed their own pan, I wasn't motivated.
Fast forward a few years when a stroll through a kitchen supply store would yield a Madeleine pan. Now mind you, I had yet to see a Madeleine in real life; but I knew I had recipes for them lurking in my cookbook collection.
Now, I was heavily intrigued and slightly motivated.
I am not sure how long it was after the pan acquisition before I made my first batch of Madeleines, but I do remember the exact recipe it was - Earl Grey Madeleines from Dorie Greenspan's Baking: From My Home to Yours. It was one of those weekends where it was just the Culinary Kid and I. We tackled our very first duck a la orange together (we had never had duck before either) and made our first batch of Madeleines for dessert.
I don't know why we waited so long for the duck or the Madeleines - it was love at first bite.
Fast forward another few years and many batches of Madeleines later. Tuesdays with Dorie introduces a new form of Madeleines to the picture - essentially ladyfinger batter squeezed into a Madeleine tin. I added a little fiori di sicilia to the mix - because I could.
What to say? This recipe didn't give me any trouble. It baked up beautifully. And I am sure they would be lovely dunked in a cuppa.
But were they for me? Not so much. I like my lady fingers soaked in coffee and topped with mascarpone - in the form of Tiramisu. And I like my Madeleines a little bit cakier - with the tea already infused into the butter.
I guess, I like what I like - no more, no less.
This post participates in Tuesdays with Dorie. The recipe for Madeleines can be found over on the site of this week's hosts: Katie and Amy Thisdell of Counter Dog.