Financiers are one of my favorite French pastry classics. During my first year living in Paris, my neighborhood bakery had the best ones: airy, buttery and moist. Perfect treat to eat on the go. And that is exactly what I did almost every day on way back home from pastry school! The happiest times. I loved them even more when I learned that these French almond cakes were so easy to make. You can be sitting down with a cup of coffee having delicious financiers in about 30 minutes from now. Go pre-heat the oven 😉.
Financiers are small French almond cakes flavored with brown butter. They are exquisite. They are traditionally baked in rectangular molds, and that is where their name is derived from because it resembles a gold bar.
FAbsolutely! This is an easy financier recipe that you can make in one bowl in under 30 minutes. You only need a few ingredients and its and ideal recipe to bake if you have a lot of egg whites in your fridge. All you need is:
Prepare all your ingredients before starting. This includes making brown butter and separating the egg whites from the egg yolks.
You can watch how to separate egg whites here.
To make brown butter: in a small casserole melt the butter until it has attained a nice brown colour and it smells like hazelnut (in French it is called "beurre noisette" – literally hazelnut butter). When browning the butter, be attentive. The line between brown butter and burnt butter is very slim (if your butter burns, the financiers will have a bitter aftertaste). If you want (I prefer to do so, but it's not life altering!) you can strain the brown butter to get rid of any impurities it might have.
And the rest is easy: in a bowl whisk all the dry ingredients (almond flour, flour, baking powder and powdered sugar) together. Add the egg whites and whisk until they have incorporated into the batter. Finally whisk in the brown butter.
Yes. You are done. Believe it! Now the baking part.
Baking financiers is straight forward. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (360 F). Bake until golden. About 15 minutes.
Time is just to guide you, it's not exact. Each oven is different. And each mold is also different. Depending on the size mold you chose it can be a longer or shorter baking time.
You know the financiers are ready if you insert a skewer at the center and it comes out clean.
Most definitely these French almond cakes can be altered and made gluten free. You need to replace the all-purpose flour by a gluten free flour mix. And voila you have a gluten free cake.
To make raspberry financiers simply replace the sliced almonds by raspberries in the recipe. After you have filled the molds, place one raspberry (or 2 depending on the size of your raspberry financiers) at the center of each almond cake and press gently to insert.
Now you have raspberry financiers instead of classic French almond cakes.
French almond cakes can be frozen for up to 2 months safely stored in a freezer bag or an airtight container.