From the story Baking Up a Sweet Career From Scratch by Samantha Nobles-Block
Madeleines are best eaten the day they are made, so make some tea or coffee and invite friends over to help you enjoy them. Black cardamom, smoky and floral, is lovely here (if you can find it), but green cardamom is delicious as well. Note: You’ll need to let this batter chill overnight, so plan ahead.
Makes 12–15 madeleines
½ vanilla bean (or substitute 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
5 tablespoons butter (plus additional for greasing mold)
2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon honey
2½ tablespoons buckwheat flour|
¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon unbleached all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground green or black cardamom
Zest of 1 orange (use lemon in a pinch)
1½ cups powdered sugar
2–4 tablespoons blood orange juice
Scrape the seeds from the half vanilla bean into the bowl of a stand mixer. Then place scraped vanilla pod with the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Brown until butter smells nutty and is a deep golden color. Cool. Remove and compost the pod.
Add eggs, sugars, honey, and vanilla extract (if using instead of the bean) to the mixer bowl. Beat for 5 minutes until mixture is pale and thick.
Measure and sift the flours with the baking powder, salt, cardamom, and orange zest. Carefully fold half of this dry mixture into the egg and sugar mixture, then do the same with the remaining half of the dry mixture. Add the browned butter and continue to fold, making sure to scrape up from the bottom so all ingredients are evenly combined. Transfer batter to a sealed container and chill overnight.
When you are preparing to bake, preheat oven to 350° and set out a rack for when the madeleines come out of the oven. Brush madeleine pan liberally with melted butter and chill to set before filling. If using the glaze, mix the juice and the powdered sugar together until smooth, and have a pastry brush ready.
Pipe or spoon the batter into molds, filling about ¾ full. Bake for 10–15 minutes, rotating pan at halfway mark. They are done when firm and golden around edges. Quickly turn madeleines out of the mold onto the rack and glaze while they are still warm. Serve.