The spoon that a baby brings to his mouth for the first time.
The spoon that you used to put in a jam pot after school, seated in the kitchen enjoying the return home.
The spoon of honey that your grandmother used to give you when you couldn’t sleep.
The spoon that your mom let you lick while she was making cakes.
The spoon of hot chocolate on a Saturday morning on a winter’s day.
The spoon that you shared with your love for your first one-person dessert.
The spoon that lets you to taste if the stew is well seasoned.
This small thing made of silver, metal or plastic carries our memories and souvenirs through the years and ages. The hero of the legendary French novel, ‘A la recherche du temps perdu’ – Remembrance of Things Past – by Marcel Proust, lives the same experience, living both the past and present simultaneously, when he bites into a Madeleine cake:
“And suddenly the memory revealed itself: The taste was that of the little piece of madeleine which on Sunday mornings at Combray (because on those mornings I did not go out before mass), when I went to say good morning to her in her bedroom, my aunt Léonie used to give me, dipping it first in her own cup of tea or tisane.”
In our modern age, though, what better way to remember the best moments of childhood than with a spoon of chocolate paste?
Madeleine – Make about 20
100g of butter
150g of caster sugar
150g of flour
A teaspoon of vanilla sugar
A teaspoon of bakery powder
A teaspoon of orange blossom
A few spoons of Nutella
Heat the oven at 180°C/gas 6
Whisk the eggs, caster sugar and vanilla sugar until white.
Add the flour and the baking powder.
Add the melted butter and the orange blossom.
Drop a small tablespoon of the batter into the centre of each prepared mould and add a teaspoon of Nutella and cover with some more batter.
Bake the madeleine for 8/9 mn until the edges are golden brown and the centres spring back when lightly touched.
Do not overbake or they will be dry.