France: Almond Financier Cakes

France: Almond Financier Cakes

French Almond Financier Cakes

Everyone knows that grandmothers have a special kind of clout in the culinary world.  Their recipes have stood the test of time, and their cooking skills well-honed.  So when you stumble upon a foreign recipe from a real-life foreign GRANDMA, pay attention.  It’s probably pretty darn good.

One of workout buddies, Christophe, is French.  Every month at SNAP Fitness we have a birthday party and bring in yummy, ever-so-fattening treats (don’t judge– we’re allowed to pig out after all the hard, physical exercise, right?).   In December, Chris brought these for our joint 43rd birthday party.  They were so good.  Not just ordinary good, but melt-in-your-mouth I-could-eat-a-HUNDRED-of-these kind of good.   Plus, they were nice enough to give me the recipe when I asked for it.

In doing my research, I learned that these little almond cakes are called financiers because they were popular in the financial districts of Paris.

My kids don’t care for nuts, but they liked these.   The almonds are ground finely enough to hide nicely inside.

When I first made French Almond Financier Cakes I used muffin tins.  However, I found these cute petit fours molds at TJ Maxx for just $6.99 and thought they were cute.  It’s important to have cute food, right?

France: Almond Financier Cakes
  • 1 tsp. almond extract
  • 6 large egg whites
  • ½ C. flour
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 C. finely chopped or ground almonds (I used whole almonds and ran them through my coffee grinder)
  • 1½ C. powdered sugar
  • 1½ sticks butter
  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Butter 18 muffin tins (traditionally, you’d use a Financier Mold but if you don’t have one the muffin tins you have at home already work well too).
  3. In a medium bowl, combine egg whites and almond extract. Meanwhile, combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Add egg whites to the dry ingredients. Add melted butter and give a quick stir until a light batter is formed. Pour into muffin tins.
  4. Bake 6 minutes at 450 degrees then lower heat to 400. Bake an additional 5-6 minutes until golden brown. Baking it first in a super-hot oven will crisp up the outside, while reducing the baking temperature to finish keeps the inside nice and moist. Allow the cakes to cool slightly then remove from the tins.