Chilled Basil-Champagne Fruit Soup with Madeleines
- 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and roughly chopped
- 1/2 honeydew melon, seeded, peeled, and roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 3/4 to 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves, plus extra for garnish
- 1 cup rose brut Champagne, chilled
- Madeleines, recipe follows
Combine the apples, honeydew, water, sugar, orange juice, lemon zest and lemon juice in a 2-quart, heavy saucepan. (The amount of sugar varies depending on the sweetness of the honeydew. If the honeydew is very sweet, use 3/4 cup of sugar, but if it doesn't seem as sweet, increase the sugar to 1 cup.) Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce the heat to medium low, and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat, add the basil to the pan and puree with an immersion blender, or in small batches in a blender (be sure to use caution when blending hot liquids in a blender). Transfer to a clean container and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 2 hours.
Stir the Champagne into the soup. Ladle into 6 small chilled bowls, and garnish with additional chopped basil and 2 Madeleines per serving. Serve immediately either as a first course or a dessert.Madeleines:
10 tablespoons (6 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup sugar
6 tablespoons sifted cake flour
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter 2 madeleine pans (with 12 molds each) using 2 tablespoons of the melted butter, and set the pans aside.
Combine the eggs, sugar, and salt in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Place the bowl over a pot of gently simmering water and stir constantly. Once the ingredients are warmed through and the sugar has dissolved, remove the bowl from the heat. Using an electric mixer, beat the mixture until it is pale yellow, light, and slightly thickened. Fold in the sifted flour, remaining butter, and lemon zest.
Use a small spoon to drop a generous tablespoonful of batter into each mold of the prepared pans. Bake until the batter is set like a cake and golden brown, about 12 to 15 minutes. Release the madeleines from the pans and cool on a parchment paper lined cooling rack.
Yield: 24 cookies
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