It seems right that after my angel food cake spree, I should move on to something sort of similar: madeleines, pretty much the cakiest cookie I can think of.
I tried five different brands: Starbucks, Donsuemor (sold at Peet’s), Sugar Bowl Bakery, Archer Farms, and Trader Joe’s. With madeleines, there doesn’t seem to be as huge a gap as there was with angel food cake. But one thing I did notice: Sugar Bowl and Archer Farms both have more calories per cookie. Basically they’re two cookies packed into one.
That may be why they also seem thicker to me, breadier. I prefer the slightly lighter madeleines, so my winners are…
Trader Joe’s and Starbucks, in a tie. I might like the taste of the Starbucks ones slightly better, but they’re also almost twice as expensive as the Trader Joe’s ones. (The Trader Joe’s ones cost a little more per package, but seriously–twice as many cookies.) Note: the Trader Joe’s ones do tend to stick together a bit, and if you want that distinction between crisper edges and softer center, it’s better to go with madeleines that look more browned. The Starbucks ones seem to be more consistent.
It definitely helps that in both these cases, the calories are low enough that I can eat two or three before I stop. Madeleines aren’t exactly a low-calorie food. But at least with my winners, I can snack (a bit) more responsibly.