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Fall is my favorite time of year... I just love the beautiful colors outside. But why I really think I love fall so much is because it's the season for baking. I love the smell you get when you bake, and it gives the home a cozy feeling.
Today, I am using a beautiful Nordic Ware Autumn Cakelet Pan, It will be perfect for making these French financiers, or almond cakes.
This recipe is from Thomas Keller's cookbook. I doubled the recipe so it is enough for this pan.
Financiers are typical French petit four cakes; they are moist in the center and have crisp edges. I am using both flour and almond flour in this recipe, but the wonderful flavor you get is from the melted brown butter.
They are a simple dessert to make, and I think you will love it.
1 cup (240 grams) sugar
½ cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup + 1 tablespoon almond flour/meal
½ cup + 5 tablespoons (200 gram) egg whites
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (optional)
7/8 cup (200 grams) brown butter, still hot
Powdered sugar, for dusting
Preheat the oven to 425 F.
Brush the financier molds with butter and refrigerate or freeze to harden the butter.
Place the sugar in a large bowl and whisk to break up any lumps.
Add the all-purpose flour. Sift the almond flour and whisk to combine.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients.
Pour in the egg whites and vanilla, gradually incorporating the dry mixture until all the dry ingredients are well-combined.
Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl,whisk again and set aside for now.
Brown Butter: Place the butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat. You'll need about 300 g or 22 tablespoons of unsalted butter. Start whisking slowly to keep the particles suspended in the butter. Keep cooking until the liquid is a golden, nutty brown, then strain through several layers of cheesecloth or a superfine sift. Finally, measure out the correct amount of hot browned butter.
Whisk in the brown butter in 2 additions.
Transfer the batter to a pastry bag or use a spoon to pipe or spoon the batter into the prepared mold stopping 1/4 inch from the top.
Tap the bottom of the molds against the work surface to smooth the top of the batter.
Place the pan in the oven, lower the oven temperature to 350 F and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the tops are golden brown and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
Immediately unmold the financiers and cool on a cooling rack.
Dust with powdered sugar.
Note: The financiers are best the day they are baked, but can be stored in a covered container for one day.