My Friend the Friand


The friand is a truly awesome small, moist, dense, rich, almondy cake. It’s very, very French, and very, very chic.


  • 180 g butter (preferably unsalted)
  • 200 g icing sugar
  • 60 g plain flour, sifted
  • 120 g ground almonds
  • 5 large free-range egg whites
  • 1 tsp grated lemon or orange rind
  • icing sugar for dusting


Heat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Melt the butter and allow to cool, then use 1 tbsp to coat 10 muffin tin moulds or individual oval baking moulds measuring 5x 10cm.

Sift the icing sugar and flour into a bowl, and mix in the ground almonds. Lightly beat the egg whites with a fork, then fold them into the dry ingredients. Add the cooled, melted butter and lemon rind, and mix well.

Three-quarters fill each mould with the mixture and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 10 minutes. Turn the tray around, and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the tops are golden and spring back to the touch.

Leave in the tins for 5 minutes, then gently unmould onto a wire tray and leave to cool. Dust the friands with icing sugar to serve, or store them in an airtight container for up to 3 days.