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Monday 20 June 2011

Baking for Beginners: Blueberry Friands

I hadn't heard of friands until an Australian friend introduced me to this traditional Aussie treat (ok, they originate in France but have been adopted by clever old Oz). Icing sugar, egg whites and a scant amount of flour means these little cakes are light and airy, while the ground almonds keep them moist. And the name looks a bit like friends if you squint a bit! Awww, blueberry friends. Delicious, blueberry friends.

They're incredibly easy to make. I am a slow baker but it took me ten minutes to whip up the batter. Melt, sieve, whisk, bake, and you're done. Ingredients magically turned to tiny cakes in under half an hour.

Lighter than muffins, they go beautifully with a mid-morning cuppa. Try them with different berries or chocolate chips, or swap the ground almond for ground pistachio or hazelnut. And why not use those leftover egg yolks to make semifreddo or home-made custard?

Blueberry friands (makes 12)

You will need:
  • 75g butter, melted and cooled
  • 100g icing sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 25g flour
  • 85g ground almonds
  • 3 egg whites
  • 80g blueberries
Make it!
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4. Pop some cake cases into a cake tin.
  2. Sift the flour and icing sugar into a bowl, and add the ground almonds.
  3. Whisk the egg whites until foamy. They don't need to be in soft peaks, so a couple of minutes of whisking with a fork will do.
  4. Make a well in the dry ingredients and tip in the egg whites. Add the butter and gently stir to make a soft, smooth batter.
  5. Fill each cake case about three-quarters full. Top each with a few berries and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and springy.
  6. Leave to cool on a cooling rack and dust with icing sugar.
Eat with a pot of tea while exclaiming "bonza, mate!", which all Australians shout when they're happy. *

* according to my years spent watching Neighbours, which is a documentary, right?


  1. These look LOVELY. And they're in every antipodean cafe in London too.

    Awww, blueberry friends.

  2. Oh dear, blueberry friends... I wrote this when I was slightly feverish on Saturday evening. It was all a bit My Drunk Kitchen, but without any of the fun (except for the end result, of course, which was lush).

  3. I made friands just yesterday - some blueberry and some coffee, which were deelish - and indeed used the leftover egg yolks to make custard (tarts) - good times, good times.

  4. Katie: the coffee ones sound lush! How did you flavour them - a shot of espresso?

  5. I want these! I have blueberries in the fridge, now I just have to figure out translating grams into cups.... thanks Sara :)

  6. Exactly that (adjust dry ingredients to make up for the extra liquid), and some vanilla extract too.

  7. Hi splendidindeed! I use this comprehensive conversion list:


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