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Fragrant Walnut & Honey Friands

January 17, 2015

Light and airy, these friands are easy to make!

Light and airy, these friands are easy to make!

Happy New 2015!

It has been a very different start to my new year with a snowy holiday in Japan. I have come back refreshed, revitalised and ready for a busy year filled with exciting new recipes to blog and more cooking classes. And all of my bones intact!

Typically of the new year, I have restocked my fridge with loads of healthy vegetables and fruit and have been madly replenishing my depleted stores of vege crackers, activated nuts & seeds and my favourite paleo bread.

My pre-Christmas cooking involved lots of egg yolks so I find my freezer full of egg whites which I’m thinking I need to find a use for, and what better way but to make some healthy friands for the weekend.

A friand is a small French cake, most often based on almonds, egg whites, butter, and sugar. The French word friand, means dainty or a gourmet who delights in delicate tastes, and friands are usually small and rich due to the high nut content. In keeping with a healthy bent, my recipe is a lot lighter than the traditional friand. I use honey instead of sugar and have omitted the butter completely although you may add a tablespoon of melted butter if you want to add some richness.

One of my favourite flavours is cardamom, which has a strong, unique taste, with an intensely aromatic, resinous fragrance. You only need to use a little, because too much can be overpowering.

I buy both the green pods, black pods and the seeds from the Asian grocer. I use the pods in curries and chai blends and use the seeds, which I mill, in cakes and desserts. It is best to mill the seeds as you use them, because as they are ground, they quickly lose their flavour. The seeds can be bought in packets and look very much like mouse poo!

Apart from Indian and Thai cuisine, cardamom is often used in baking in Sweden, Finland, and the Middle East. I tend to discover the spice for a while, OD on it and then forget about it for a while!

From a medicinal perspective, cardamom is broadly used to treat infections in the mouth and upper respiratory tract. It is also great for digestion and the gall bladder, which might be handy for our post-Christmas reboot!  If you are averse to cardamom, feel free to replace with nutmeg or allspice.

4 egg whites

1/4 teas cream of tartar

1/4 teas cardamom seeds

140g raw almonds

60g walnuts

60g honey

1 tab melted butter (optional)

1 teas vanilla extract

1 1/2 teas baking powder

pinch salt

Warm the clean empty TM bowl on 60°C for 1 minute on SP 3.

Add the egg whites and tartar and insert the butterfly and whip on SP 4 for 2 minutes at 37°C until light & fluffy. Set aside in another wide bowl. Rinse & dry the TM bowl and add the cardamom seeds. Mill on SP 9 for 20 seconds, then add the almonds and grind on SP 9 for 5 seconds. Add the walnuts & salt and grind for a further 5 seconds on SP 8.

Add the honey, vanilla, butter (if using) and baking powder and mix on SP 4 to combine well.

Fold the nut mixture into the egg whites gently and pour into silicone friand or cupcake molds to bake for 15 minutes at 170°C. Serve warm or at room temperature. These also freeze very well.

 

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