Recipe: French Madeleines

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Nearly every year, my parents and I go on holiday to the same small village on the coast of Normandy, France: Anneville-sur-Mer (once chosen for its name). This year, we went in the first half of September and it was as wonderful as ever! It’s one of my favourite places to be: in just a minute’s stroll you’re on the beach with the most beautiful sunsets and it’s as quiet as can be (apart from the sea, which is very soothing). I always get lots of reading done there as well.

Another thing I always do when we’re there is buy baking stuff in one of the giant supermarkets. Either a mould or tin, or some ingredient that’s much more expensive in the Netherlands, or something completely different. This time, on one of the last days, I came across a silicone madeleine mould for three euros, so of course, that ended up being mine. I’d never baked madeleines (tiny, sweet cakes in the shape of shells) before, but now I could!

I should’ve bought two moulds, though, because this madeleine recipe I’ve got for you today makes about a gazillion of them and my mould only has twelve holes. I think I must have made at least five batches before I got sick of it and dumped the rest of the mixture into my mini-muffin tin (still tasted great, but they didn’t look as pretty).

For these madeleines, I used a recipe from the first recipe book I ever bought. The instructions weren’t super clear, though, so I had to go with my gut a few times, which was fun! The recipe I wrote down for you is a little more elaborate. It also calls for orange blossom water, which I still had because I used it in another recipe once. I think you can easily replace it with vanilla, though, because after some research I don’t think orange blossom water is necessarily a staple ingredient of madeleines.

Anyway, on to the recipe!

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A Week in Normandy

Last week (the first full week of May) I went on a little vacation to Normandy, France with my parents and one of my best friends, Yvonne. When I was still in high school we used to go there, to a tiny village called Anneville (nice, eh?), pretty much every year, but I hadn’t been back there since the year before my graduation because of university obligations and all that jazz. This time, I did have time to go (more or less — I took my laptop with me), and it was so good to be back!

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