Individual French Hazelnut Cakes

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Preparation info

  • Makes about


    cakes, depending on the size of the molds used
    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Modern Baker

The Modern Baker

By Nick Malgieri

Published 2008

  • About

Sometimes these are called financiers or friands, and they’re always very popular, especially with a cup of tea or coffee. They look really impressive when made in the traditional rectangular French molds, but mini muffin pans will work just as well.


  • 1 cup (about 4 ounces/100 grams) hazelnuts, with skins, finely ground in the food processor
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup flour (spoon flour into a dry-measure cup and level off)
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • Twenty-four 2- to 2½-inch (5- to 6-cm) square or oval pans set on a jelly-roll pan, or one 24-cavity mini muffin pan, buttered and floured


  1. Set a rack in the middle level of the oven and preheat to 375°F (190°C).
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the hazelnuts, sugar, and flour. Use a large rubber spatula to stir in the egg whites. Then fold in the butter.
  3. Spoon the batter into the prepared pans, filling them about ⅔ full.
  4. Bake the cakes until they are well risen, deep golden, and firm when pressed with a fingertip, about 15 minutes. Invert them to a rack to cool, then immediately turn them rightside up to cool completely.


Serve these after dessert with coffee, or as part of an assortment of desserts.


Keep the cakes loosely covered with plastic wrap on the day they are made. Arrange them in a single layer in a tin or plastic container with a tight-fitting cover and refrigerate for longer storage. Bring to room temperature before serving.


Substitute blanched almonds for all or half of the hazelnuts.