Friday, 4 November 2011

Almond and Orange Blossom Friands

Three's a charm
I wanted to do some simple baking today, and of course craved something chewy and sticky that only a good measure of ground almonds can cater for- so I made a batch of friands. I don't have a proper tin, so I just used a plain old 12 hole muffin one and I think they turned out ok- perhaps a little singed, but that's because I have a gas oven (basically a box of fire) so that often happens to the back lot. 
The tins get greased with melted butter which helps to create a crisp and chewy crust, whilst the cake is light with a moist chewy texture from the almonds. Lovely with a cup of tea.
180g unsalted butter, melted
6 medium egg whites
225g icing sugar
75g plain flour
125g ground almonds
zest of a lemon
1 tablespoon orange blossom water 
icing sugar to dust

-Set the oven to gas mark 6/ 200C and place a baking tray on the top shelf (large enough to put the muffin/friand tray on to)
-use a pastry brush to brush some of the melted butter in to each hole of a 12 hole muffin/friand tin and set the rest of the butter aside to cool.
- lightly hand whisk the egg whites in a large bowl until they are frothy. Not peaky, just frothy. Sift the icing sugar and flour over the top of the whites, the sprinkle over the almonds and zest. By sifting and sprinkling you should incorporate some air and not let any of the dry mix sink to the bottom of the whites. Gently pour over the melted butter.
- fold these in with the whisk by simultaneously turning the whisk and turning the bowl (or do it with a big metal spoon)until it's a smooth batter. Add the blossom water and mix. 
-Fill the holes nearly to the top. leaving a wee gap. Bake for 20 minutes, checking after 18. Leave to cool in the tins for a few minutes before running a knife around the edges and flipping them on to a rack to cool. Dust with icing sugar and enjoy!

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