A Friand is a delicious, moist, little French cake make with butter and almonds. I often make Lemon Friand which are really good. This time I used orange, and plenty of it, which to me is an evocative aroma and flavour of Christmas. Combined with a little mixed spice, your kitchen will begin to smell so good! I’ve also spiced them up with a little dried crushed chilli flakes which gives the cake a gorgeous warmth and depth of flavour and leaves a warm tingle on your tongue long after the cake has been eaten. Don’t worry though, it doesn’t make them spicy, its a bit like having strawberries and black pepper, it only enhances the flavour!
I make no apologies for including a recipe that contains sugar and butter on my blog! The butter adds a massive amount of flavour and I’m a strong believer in using good quality butter and not processed fats when needed. Having the occasional treat is OK and if you can’t at Christmas then when can you?!! The icing sugar is necessary for texture and flavour and actually this recipe isn’t overly sweet so I hope you can enjoy it guilt free!! I’ve used buckwheat flour in this recipe to make sure they are gluten free, however do check the label to make sure its been processed in a gluten free environment. If you’re not worried about gluten, you can substitute plain white flour here and they will work absolutely fine.
Enjoy your Spiced Orange Friand with a cup of tea or coffee or serve as a great pudding with a spoonful of thick cream or creme fraiche. You could also accompany them with some delicious vanilla poached plums.
200g icing sugar
75g buckwheat flour
140g ground almonds
1/2tsp ground mixed spice
1/4tsp dried crushed red chilli flakes
6 large egg whites
coarsely grated rind of 2 oranges
a little icing sugar for dusting
Preheat the oven to 190ºC. Melt the butter and use a little to grease the insides of 12 deep muffin tin.
Sift the icing sugar and buckwheat flour into a bowl. Mix in the ground almond, mixed spice and chilli flakes.
Lightly beat the egg whites until they begin to loosen and become slightly bubbly. Fold the egg whites into the dry ingredients with a large metal spoon. Add the remaining melted butter and orange rind and fold in until well combined. Divide the mixture equally between the muffin tins, they should be about three-quarters full.
Bake in the oven for 10
minutes. Turn the tray around and cook for a further 10 minutes or until they are golden brown, springy to the touch and are coming away lightly from the sides of the tin
Leave to cool for 5-10 minutes, run a small palate knife around the outside of each Friand and remove from the tins. Dust with icing sugar and serve immediately or transfer onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Store the Friand in an airtight container for up to 3 days or layer between sheets of greaseproof paper in an airtight container and freeze. Defrost slowly at room temperature.
Variation; To make simple lemon Friand, omit the mixed spice, chilli and orange rind and add the grated rind of a lemon with the butter.