Are you ready to meet your new BFF?
Friands, those tender, almondy, oh so French cakes that nobody can resist, are ridiculously simple to make and are about to become part of your core baking repertoire.
Ever wonder what to do with leftover egg whites? No longer a problem. Start up a collection by tipping them into a container and freezing them. Add “new” whites to the same container and freeze (just remember to mark on the container how many you have!). When you get to 6, defrost gently and make Friands!
They lend themselves to any fruit you like (fresh berries and stone fruit being clear favourites, but don’t underestimate the power of chopped dried apricots or the simple sultana), and cope equally well with a smattering of chopped chocolate or nuts. You can make them with gluten free flour with no impact on the tenderness of the cake, and mixing-wise they are a 5 minute, one bowl wonder. Just think: lonely and cakeless to surrounded by Friand friends in 30 mintues. And if you fail to eat them all in one go – they keep well in the fridge for a week.
Quite simply, these will be your Best Friands Forever.
BFF Blackberry Friands
You can buy speciality oval Friand moulds, or you can simply use muffin or cupcake pans, mini loaf pans or any other similarly sized pans. Makes 9 oval Friands or 10 cupcake sized friands.
While the recipe below is for blackberry friands, feel free to substitute in rasponetties, cherries, strawberries, halved plums or dried fruit.
1 cup ground almonds
1 1/2 cups icing sugar
1/2 cup flour (gluten free or plain is fine!)
1/2 tsp vanilla bean powder
zest of 1/2 a lemon, coarsely grated (I use a ribbon microplane designed to grate parmesan cheese and chocolate)
175g butter, melted
6 egg whites
1 cup fresh blackberries
Prepare your baking tin by buttering the moulds cavities (you can use bake paper smeared with butter, or you can brush melted butter into the moulds) and dusting liberally with flour. Shake any excess flour from the moulds.
Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add the butter and egg whites and stir until smooth. Spoon the batter into the prepared moulds to 3/4 full. Sprinkle the blackberries over.
Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 25 minutes or until the cakes are slightly risen and golden. Cool on a wire rack. Dust with icing sugar to serve.