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Madeleines

2 eggs
l/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind, or 2 teaspoons grated orange rind
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour
8 tablespoons (1/2 cup) butter, melted and cooled slightly
4 tablespoons softened butter

Preheat the oven to 400F. Smear about l/2 teaspoon softened butter
over the inside of each form. Be sure to completely cover with
butter, don't leave any bare spots.

Combine the eggs, sugars and lemon or orange rind in a large mixing
bowl, and stir them together. Set in a pan of simmering water and
stir until the egg mixture is very warm to your finger. Remove from
the heat and beat with a mixer at high speed until fluffy, pale
yellow, and tripled in volumes about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla
and salt.

Dump the flour into a sifter or strainer, sprinkle half of it over
the egg mixture, and fold it in. Pour in 8 tablespoons of butter
and sprinkle on the remaining flour, and fold gently just until
the batter is mixed. Spoon a generous tablespoon of batter into
each prepared mold; do not spread it evenly, it will level itself
in the oven. Bake for about 10 minutes, until the edges of the
cakes are golden and they lift easily from the molds. Remove from
the oven, slipping the tines of a table fork under each cookie to
free it, and transfer the Madeleines to a rack to cool. Serve within
a few hours, or wrap them airtight and freeze. Serve plain, or
sprinkle the ribbed side with confectioners' sugar.

Note: if you have only one pan, and can bake only 12 at a time,
let the mold cool, wipe it out, grease with butter, then refill
with batter and bake again.

Chocolate Madeleines:

These are bittersweet, dense, and chocolaty. Reduce the flour to
2/3 cup and add l/3 cup unsweetened cocoa. Sift the flour and cocoa
together twice before adding them to the batter.

Whole-Wheat Madeleines:

Drier and not as light as other Madeleines, these are especially
good for dunking. Substitute 1 cup less 2 tablespoons whole-wheat
flour for the white flour.

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