These friands proved to me the uniting power that cake can have. One of the main perks of having baking as a hobby is getting to share delicious bakes with friends and family and seeing the look on their faces when they try something new, successful and irresistibly tasty! I took these baby blueberry friands to a serious occasion with lots of small talk but these soon got people talking as we discussed their tiny size, the recipe, method and author and I think everyone enjoyed passing these round whilst sneaking a couple at a time off the platter!The recipe made a lot as you can maybe tell from the pictures, but I also made mine pretty tiny in a mini muffin tin – only a couple of centimetres high – so that they were the perfect canape, so clearly if you made them larger or in traditional oval friand moulds the recipe would make a more normal amount. There is sometimes a stage in baking that can be quite therapeutic – for some bakers this might be piping, kneading dough, rolling pastry or stamping out cookies. Today for me it was the process of filling up the mini muffin tins over and over with a little teaspoon of mixture and a couple of blueberries. The cakes take hardly any time to bake because they are so small and are delicious warm straight out the oven but also last nicely for a good few days. They are light, moist (terrible word but true), with bright bursts of flavour from the blueberries and lemon zest. You can find the recipe below – enjoy! Mini Blueberry Friands, adapted from Jill Dupleix’s Totally Simple Food
Makes about 40 mini muffin size, or around 10 normal sized friands or muffins
Ingredients: 180g butter, melted and cooled
200g icing sugar
60g plain flour, sifted
120g ground almonds
5 large free-range egg whites
zest of 1 lemon
200g blueberries, fresh or frozen
icing sugar for dusting
1. Heat the oven to 200°C / Gas 6. Grease 2 mini muffin tins, or 10 friand moulds, or one muffin tin.
2. Sift the icing sugar and flour into a bowl and mix in the ground almonds. Lightly beat the egg whites with a fork and fold them into the dry ingredients. Add the cooled, melted butter and lemon zest, and mix until all combined.
3. Place a teaspoon of mixture in each mini muffin tin, add two or three bluberries and cover with another teaspoon of mixture.
4. Bake for 8-10minutes until golden brown and springing back to the touch, checking on the edges as these darken quicker than the top of the friands. Three-quarters fill each mould with the mixture and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 10 minutes.
4. Leave the tins for 5 minutes, then gently unmould onto a wire tray and leave to cool. Dust the friands with icing sugar and store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.