The classic French lemon and honey madeleine

The French madeleine is a traditional small cake from Commercy and Liverdun, two little cities of the Lorraine region in northeastern France. It’s definitively the perfect accompaniment to your afternoon cup of tea or coffee. The French madeleine is also a beautiful present to give to your friends or family!

Madeleines are very small sponge cakes with a distinctive shell-like shape acquired from being baked in pans with shell-shaped depressions. Aside from the traditional moulded pan, commonly found in stores specialising in kitchen equipment and even hardware stores, no special tools are required to make madeleines.

A génoise cake batter is used. The flavour is similar to, but somewhat lighter than, sponge cake. 

La madeleine de Proust: in Proust’s most famous work, In Search Of Lost Time (“À la recherche du temps perdu”). Proust’s narrator involuntarily recalls an episode from his childhood after tasting a madeleine dipped in tea.

No sooner had the warm liquid mixed with the crumbs touched my palate than a shudder ran through me and I stopped, intent upon the extraordinary thing that was happening to me.

Ingredients for 20 madeleines

  • 3 eggs
  • 100 g of sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of honey
  • 150 g flour
  • 80 g of butter
  • The zest of a lemon

You will need a madeleines pan to realize the famous madeleine hump!

Recipe for 20 madeleines

Preheat the oven to 450 °F.

Melt together on a low heat butter and honey.

In a bowl, beat the eggs with the sugar, add the flour and then the lemon zest

Then stir in the melted butter / honey.

Spread the dough in the cells of a madeleine mold.

Bake for 4 minutes at 450 °F then lower the thermostat to 350 ° F. and continue baking for 5/6 minutes according to your oven.


If you want to cook an other snack for all the family, check our sugar free cereals bars recipe or just check our list of French recipes!


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