Originally this recipe called for lemon zest, but I didn't have any lemons, so I subbed the zest of a whole orange instead. It was definitely a good move; chocolate and orange make a good combination (then again, chocolate seems to make everything better :D). This delightful recipe by Pierre Hermé was quite successful; it was one of those few instances where my cookies looked exactly like the cookbook picture. These madeleines are like mini cakes, with a tender crumb and distinctive humps, perfect with a cup of tea.
1/2 cup + 1 tbsp flour
3 1/2 tbsp Dutch-processed cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
pinch of salt
zest of an orange
2 eggs, room temperature
6 1/2 tbsp butter, room temperature
Combine and mix the dry ingredients: flour, cocoa powder, and baking powder. In a separate bowl, combine the sugar, salt, and orange zest, and rub the zest into the salt and sugar. Add the eggs and mix well. Work the butter with a spatula into a paste and then add it to the egg/sugar/salt/zest bowl.
Mix well with a whisk, incorporating the butter. Add the dry ingredients and mix only until no more white streaks remain. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place the batter in the fridge overnight (for the madeleines to develop that distinguishing bump).
Preheat the oven to 425°F. If you have a metal pan, spray and flour it. If you have a silicon mold, this isn't necessary. Fill the molds with batter. Bake them for 10-15 minutes, until they develop the bump and are firm to the touch. Remove the madeleines from the pan and place on a rack to cool. Then enjoy!
Makes 12-15 madeleines.