What's a financier? It's not just a person who handles lots of money, it's also the name of a lovely little French treat! This petite cake would be a great make-ahead item for a brunch, shower or tea party. I deviated from the traditional recipe with one Pacific Northwest ingredient addition — I couldn't help myself.
I plunked one blackberry into each of my financiers. I figured it would give the cakes a jam-like center and add a little fruity complement to the almond flavor. They were lovely in this manner, but I am curious to try them sans fruit for the traditional taste.
Financiers are small French cakes with an almond meal and butter base. They are simple and satisfying, related in texture and taste to madelines or cat tongue cookies. It is said that these small tea cakes were originally baked in rectangular molds, creating a golden bar shape, thus eliciting the funny name of Financier. You don't have to be a Rockefeller to make and eat these edible golden sweets though!
(adapted from Chocolate and Zucchini: Daily Adventures in a Parisian Kitchen by Clotide Dusoulier)
1 cup ground almonds (I used Bob's Red Mill Finely Ground Almond Meal) 1/3 cup sugar 3 tablespoons flour 6 tablespoons butter, plus a little more to grease the muffin tins 1/3 cup honey 2 eggs 1 teaspoon almond extract 24 blackberries (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two mini muffin pans.
Combine the ground almonds, flour and salt in a medium-sized bowl. Melt butter in a small saucepan, add honey and sugar, stirring to melt. Pour the butter honey mixture into the almond flour mixture, whisking to combine. Add the eggs, one by one, stirring until the batter is uniform.
Pour about 1 heaping tablespoon of the batter into the greased and floured muffin tins. Place one blackberry, if using, on top of each muffin. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until golden. Let stand in muffin tins for about 5 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool fully.