I bought a punnet of blueberries over the weekend and knew I wanted to make financiers with them. I had seen a recipe for Blueberry & Lavender Ice-cream on Pretty Prudent and earmarked the flavour combo to try out at some point in the future. Today was the future!
Financiers are really quite simple to make as you don't need anything other than a bowl and spoon, which means they are the perfect afternoon baking project to involve your little ones in on too. They are a french cake known for its simplicity (and almond flavour).
I adapted the recipe from Sweets by Sillianah and made the financiers Gluten-Free by using polenta in place of flour and I added the lavender seeds instead of vanilla. Financiers are traditionally baked in small rectangular molds (which resemble bars of gold, hence the term financiers...) but as I do not have such molds, mine were baked in my 6-mini-cheesecake pan instead.
1 cup almond meal/ground almond
1 2/3 cups icing sugar
1/2 cup polenta
1 t lavender
5-6 egg whites
6oz melted butter
1 cup fresh blueberries
1. Combine all ingredients well, stirring with a wooden spoon. (This is quite a departure from my usual methods isn't it...).
2. Prepare baking molds by spreading melted butter around the base and edges.
3. Pour batter into molds and bake on 450F/230C for 7 minutes until the edges start to brown a little, and then turn the oven down to 400F/205C and bake for another 7 minutes.
4. When they are golden brown on top, let them cool in their tins for another 7 minutes.
Serve either warm or cool, but it is best to serve them on the day they are made due to the polenta. The polenta adds a crispness to the financiers that would be otherwise lacking, but obviously means that the cakes will not rise as much as if you were to use self-raising flour. The lavender gives a subtle flavour differential that compliments the blueberries perfectly.
I served this with a dollop of cream cheese icing, which was made by combing cream cheese, butter and icing sugar. The cream cheese icing helped to keep each bite moist and sweet, and was the perfect side dollop!!
Even for a NON-GF cake, these are delicious!! You know how sometimes you are eating gluten free with "regular" folk and you just know that they aren't enjoying it quite as they would as if it were light and fluffy, well this cake isn't meant to be, and so what makes it GF is actually its main strengths! And as they only took such a short amount of time to make, these would be a perfect little treat after a dinner party as they look and taste so impressive!