My husband, the football fan, tells me he’s been accused of jumping on the 12th man (Seattle Seahawks fan base) bandwagon. Unfortunately, I can understand why people might think this. I can attest to the fact that since the Superbowl win last year the amount of 12th man gear in our house has literally expanded 20 fold. All three of us now sport gear regularly and our 2 year old will see the Seahawks emblem and shout “Go Hawks” unprompted. In fact he bonded with a little girl at the children’s museum last week as she was sporting a matching jersey and they shouted “hawks” at each other. However, I don’t think we can be blamed for the “misfortune” of moving to a city 2 years before they won the Superbowl. Nor can we be blamed for getting caught up in the fever. Not when every second person in Seattle is decked out in blue and green. When “12” is emblazoned across the windows of office buildings all across town and even the T-mobile campus, normally illuminated at night to be the company’s signature purple, is now glowing blue and green. We’re more lemmings if you will. As such, it has become Mr Firehouse’s priority, and in turn ours, to be home by game time every week. For my part, it’s important to have great sustenance and we cheer the blue and green and why not have blue and green sustenance for good measure.
In most Australian cafes, friands are something as ubiquitous as good chocolate chip cookies are in the US. Amazing, buttery cakes full of almonds and topped with delicious nuts and fruits. They’re small, usually on the pricier side and usually delicious. Raspberry friands are my favourite. However today, in honour of the Seahawks playing this weekend, I wanted to put a little blue and neon green into the mix. Something a little different and perhaps slightly more sophisticated then the themed donuts and cupcakes about the place.
Based on the Financiers recipe from the Bouchon Bakery Cookbook
- 180g. Granulated sugar
- 60g All purpose/ plain flour
- 90g. Almond meal
- 150g. Egg whites
- 150g. Brown butter still hot *
- Blueberries and chopped pistachios to decorate
Preheat the oven to 425F/200 C and butter 12 friand moulds or 2 twelve home mini muffin tins. In a medium sized bowl sift in the granulated sugar, flour and almond meal. Mix well, making sure to break up any clumps or large pieces.
Make a well in centre and add in the egg whites. Gradually mix the egg whites into the flour mixture, making sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl well. Add the warm butter in two batches, mixing well after each addition. The warm butter will emulsify the mixture and there will a lovely thick mixture.
Divide the mixture between the moulds, I placed about 2.5 tbsp. in each friand mould and about 1.5 tbsp. in each muffin tin. Place the blueberries and pistachios on top. Raspberries, almonds, blackberries will also work well. Place the tins/trays in the oven and REDUCE the temperature to 350F/180C. Bake for 20 mins or until the tops are golden brown.
Cool slightly and un-mould before placing in an airtight container. These should keep for a couple of days at room temperature.
Brown Butter – Based on the Bouchon Bakery cookbook method.
I bought the bouchon bakery cookbook while in Napa recently and have fallen in love with their way of browning butter. It’s simple and involves a little more work but I think the results are totally worth it. If you can’t be bothered straining, it shouldn’t make too much difference.
- 2 sticks/ 225 g unsalted butter
- small heavy bottomed saucepan
- cheesecloth to strain
Place your butter in the saucepan and melt over a gentle heat. Once the butter has completely melted, begin to whisk to prevent the solids from catching at the bottom. Continue whisky for about 5 minutes as the butter changes colour and the smells becomes nutty and almost caramel-like. The butter will bubble and continue to cook. Once the butter is golden brown (just pour a drop onto a white saucer to check) pour through the cheesecloth to strain. Place in a lidded container if not using immediately.