I was about to write that friands are one of my favourite kinds of cake, what with their moist, close texture and nutty flavour, and then I thought against this since I write that almost every recipe is one of my favourites. But then I came to my senses and realised that of course I’m going to write about so many recipes being my favourites otherwise I wouldn’t be posting them! So yes, friands, one of my favourite kinds of cake and this, one of my favourite recipes. I hope you like these as much as I do!
Chocolate, Hazelnut and Pear Friands
- 100g unsalted butter
- 200g dark chocolate
- 6 medium egg whites
- 75g plain flour
- 125g icing sugar
- 100g dark brown soft sugar
- 130g ground toasted hazelnuts
- 2 tinned pear halves, each sliced lengthways into six
Preheat the oven to 190°C (180°C fan)/375°F/gas mark 5 and grease a 12-hole friand tin. Place the butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set over a pan of simmering water to melt, stirring occasionally. Once melted, set aside to cool.
Place the egg whites in a large mixing bowl and whisk with a balloon whisk until frothy. Sift in the flour, sugars and ground hazelnuts (if all of the brown sugar and hazelnuts don’t go through the sieve, break up any lumps then tip into the bowl), then add the cooled butter and chocolate mixture. Stir together with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until the mixture is even.
Divide the mixture evenly between the holes of the tin. Skewer one end of a pear slice with a toothpick then carefully push the un-skewered end in one of the uncooked friands. Position the toothpick so it sits on the rim of the hole, securing the pear slice so it will not become completely submerged. Repeat with the remaining pear slices. Bake for 25 minutes until risen and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave to cool completely in the tin then carefully remove the toothpicks. Using a palette knife, carefully remove the friands from the tin.