ffwd: financiers

Financiers

This week, we’re baking again for French Fridays with Dorie. After last week’s confusing categorization of a sweet-savory nibble, this week’s recipe is firmly in the land of sweets: financiers. Financiers are little buttery almond cakes, traditionally baked in the shape of a gold ingot, that were created by Patisserie Lasne in Paris as a snack for the stockbrokers at the Bourse.

I’ve been fascinated by this recipe for ages. In my embarrassingly large (or should I say ginormous) collection of clipped recipes, I’m sure there are at least a dozen variations for financiers. And yet, before this week, I’d never made them before. I was very excited to try.

For something this rich and delicious, the batter is surprisingly simple to make. First, you brown some butter. Then, you combine almond flour, sugar, and egg whites, and heat this mixture until it gets hot. Some flour is added, and finally the butter is whisked in, and you have batter. The batter does need to rest overnight.

I’ve only browned butter once, before for another Dorie recipe. The process took a little longer than I expected, but it was meditative. I fell into a trance while I carefully watched the butter boil. Then, in an instant, it smelled nutty and turned a lovely shade of brown.

Browned Butter

I used almond meal from Trader Joe’s which has flecks of brown from the skin, so my batter had a wholesome, rustic look. I suppose the French patisseries use almond meal or flour made from blanched nuts, for a more refined look.

I didn’t have a special financier pan, so baked my little cakes in mini-muffin tins. Actually, I’ve made one pan full and have enough to bake at least another dozen today. The batter will keep for 3 days in the refrigerator, so the pleasure of slightly warm nutty goodness can be extended throughout the week.

Ready to Bake

I didn’t have any fresh berries on hand, but you can also adorn each cake with a berry before baking. I’ll try to remember that in raspberry season this summer.

Financiers are definitely a good snack, not just for French stockbrokers, but for anyone, anywhere.

If you’d like to try these yourself, you can find the recipe here. And, you can always find it in Dorie Greenspan’s book Around My French Table. To read about other bloggers’ financiers, check out their links here.

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Posted on 12 April 2013, in Baking, French Fridays with Dorie and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 18 Comments.

  1. I wanted a more almond flavor… did yours have a pronounced almond flavor? I was wondering if almond meal is more flavorful than almond flour?

  2. I actually like your brown spots a lot Betsy! It´s the same with or without skins. I thought you had added something else to the batter. They came out wonderful, glad you enjoyed them!

  3. I buy the almond meal from TJ’s all the time and have used it in place of almond flour. I think it works just fine. I love the way yours look…kind of rustic and yet elegant!!
    Have a great weekend, Betsy!

  4. I’ve used the almond flour from Trader Joes and it works great- I like the brown flecks from the almond skins. I had almond meal/flour leftover from Bob’s Red Mill which is made from skinless almonds so it looks lighter but slightly more expensive… I like the way your financiers look and I’m glad they worked out so well for you-have a great weekend Betsy;-)

  5. I really enjoyed these simple little treats as well – the brown flecks in yours make them look healthy I think! A great excuse to eat more!

  6. These are a good snack and a dangerous one. I do believe this was my first time on the financier train as well – I liked!!!!!
    The almond meal you used added a visual interest. And now I want to eat some!

  7. This week’s recipe was a first for me as well. I had never even eaten financiers before Dorie suggested them and this week was the first time I made them. Certainly not the last time though.

  8. Did Howard like these, Betsy. They were so delicious but rather plain and there wasn’t anything special to really dislike about them. That’s coming from someone who used the extra batter to make six madeleine mold-shaped financiers and ate every one in a 36 hour period. This was my second attempt at beurre noisette – the first being more than 20 years ago. I see it called for in so many recipes so I am glad to now be on the bandwagon. Nice Post.

  9. Helyn Benjamin

    Hi. Looks good. Hope all is well. Warming up? Been beautiful but today humid and stormy. Love xxxxx

    Sent from my iPad

  10. You know, i kinda like your rustic looking financiers! I could fool myself into thinking perhaps they were better for me so I could eat twice as much!

  11. Nice! I like the rustic look. These are dangerously good and easy to make.

  12. Betsy, I really like the way your financiers look like, they have a nice, rich and warm buttery color – they must have been delightful. It is really nice to see and read that so many/or all of the members of the FFwD group enjoyed this recipe and would like to make it again!
    Have a wonderful weekend! – This is indeed turning out to be one delicious month of April!

  13. It was my first stab at these, too…but I enjoyed them, too. Hope you get a chance to try them with berries :)

  14. These financiers look terrific – glad you got the chance to make them

  15. Rich and delicious is right! I envy you a Trader Joe’s. Maybe someday we’ll get one.

  16. Your financiers are so very pretty, Betsy. I love how they look with the specks of brown throughout from the almond meal. Lovely job!

  17. I also have an embarrassingly large collection of recipes that I’ve been meaning to try for ages. It’s definitely fun when FFWD actually inspires me to try one of them! Your financiers came out beautifully. I like the brown specks.

  18. I’ve just managed to make these this week and am only now catching up on everyone’s posts. I hadn’t made financiers before, either, but this definitely won’t be my last time. We loved these. I really like the way the almond skins give your financiers a flecked look. Pretty and even a little nutritious.

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