Financiers are little French cakes traditionally baked in rectangular molds to resemble gold bars. You'd think that since my day job is in corporate finance I would have been motivated to make them before, but I never did. That all changed when I finally bought a financier mold. Had I known what I was missing it wouldn't have taken me so long.
These financiers are really, really good; I ate two of them minutes after they came out of the oven. What sets them apart is the beurre noisette (a fancy name for brown butter) that's used in the batter. I also made them gluten-free by substituting C4C flour in place of all-purpose flour - I swear you can't even tell the difference.
Raspberry-Almond Financiers (adapted from Joy of Baking)
Makes 12 Financiers
Makes 12 Financiers
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter
1/4 cup (30 grams) C4C gluten-free flour (or all-purpose flour)
1/2 cup (50 grams) almond flour
3/4 cup (90 grams) confectioner's sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large (90 grams) egg whites, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
24 fresh raspberries
1/4 cup sliced, blanched almonds
Preheat the oven to 350F (177C). Place the almond flour on a baking sheet and bake for 6-8 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and let cool.
Increase oven temperature to 400F (205C). Place a silicone financier mold (mine had twelve 3x1x1 inch cavities) on a baking sheet and spray with non-stick cooking spray. (You can also use mini muffin molds. Makes about 16, depending on size of your muffin molds.)
Put unsalted butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once the butter has melted let it come to a boil, swirling the pan occasionally. As it boils you will notice that a foam will appear on the butter's surface. Continue to cook the butter until it looks clear and the milk solids have dropped to the bottom of the pan and turned deep brown. Remove from the heat and immediately pour through a cheesecloth-lined strainer. Let cool to room temperature.
In a large bowl whisk together the flour, almond flour, confectioners sugar and salt. Make a well in the center and fold in the lightly beaten egg whites, vanilla, and the brown butter. Divide the batter evenly among the molds, about 2 tablespoons of batter each, and top with two fresh raspberries and a few slices of the blanched almonds. Bake the financiers for about 15 minutes or until they have become brown on top and are springy to the touch. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack. To release the financiers from the mold, flip the mold over and shake; the cakes should come out fairly easily. These are best eaten the same day they are made.