Financiers are small French almond cakes with a crispy outside and a soft inside. Traditionally made in a little rectangular mould, the name is said to come from the fact that they resemble small bars of gold. This version of a financier does not stray too far from the classic; it is moist, crisp, and flavoured with butterscotch-scented beurre noisette, or browned butter.
My first attempt was sugar-free, using only powdered erythritol as the sweetener, but the result had a ‘cool’ taste that didn’t work for me. I recommend a 50/50 blend of demerara or coconut sugar with erythritol or xylitol — this keeps the cake tasting like the delicious original, but keeps the sugar relatively low. For me it would be sacrilege to mess around with the traditional French recipe to the point where it is unrecognisable. I did omit the white flour, however, using ground GF oats/ oat flour as a substitute.
Ingredients (makes approx 10 Financiers)
- 3 medium free range egg whites
- 85g ground almonds/ almond flour
- 25g gluten-free oat flour
- 50g powdered (or granulated) erythritol + 50g coconut/demerara sugar (or 100g of either)
- 80g beurre noisette/ browned butter
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- Berries of choice (optional)
- Brown the butter by placing it in a pan over a low heat until it starts to bubble and smell like butterscotch. It should look a little browner, but be careful not to burn it.
- Combined the dry ingredients, and then add in the wet (I did this in the food processor)
- Pour the browned butter in last, and combine.
- Refrigerate the mixture for 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 200C and prepare cake moulds by greasing them with butter.
- Scoop mixture into moulds and top with some berries.
- Bake for around 10-15 minutes, until they look browned on top.
- Allow to cool before eating! This allows the outside to crisp up nicely.