Wednesday, June 12, 2013


There re two kinds of bakers in this world: egg white bakers and egg yolk bakers. I am firmly planted in the yolk camp. Most of the time, I am of the opinion that egg white based desserts are too fussy, and I'd much prefer to make pudding or pastry cream than angel food cake. The only good thing about angel food cake is that you can compress a slice into a tiny ball and shove the whole thing in your mouth. 

The point is, I am often left with an overabundance of albumen that I just don't know what to do with. Thankfully, egg whites last a long time and can be frozen if you don't want to use them right away. I usually end up forgetting about them if I do that though...oops...

My buddies at OXO sent me some awesome egg tools around Easter that I hadn't gotten to use until now, since I was out of the country. This egg separator rocks my world. Never again do I have to worry about getting yolks in the whites!

So I have recently taken on a baking project that required NINE egg yolks (Oy vey. Wait a couple weeks and you'll see what I am talking about. What can I do with so many egg whites? Make a healthy omelette, I guess, if you're into that sort of thing. Or combine them with sugar, browned butter and almonds to make financiers. That's more my style.  The name of these little cakes comes from the fact that the traditional molds are rectangular, making them look like gold bars. I used tiny tart pans to make mine extra cute, but honestly, they were kind of a pain to get out of the mold and I kind of wish I had used mini muffin tins instead. Live and learn!

from Dorie Greenspan

1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces; 180 grams) unsalted butter
1 cup (200 grams) sugar
1 cup (100 grams) ground almonds
6 large egg whites
2/3 cup (90 grams) all-purpose flour

Put the butter in a small saucepan and bring it to the boil over medium heat, swirling the pan occasionally.  Allow the butter to bubble away until it turns a deep brown, but don't turn your back on the pan - the difference between brown and black is measured in seconds.  Pull the pan from the heat and keep it in a warm place.
Mix the sugar and almonds together in a medium saucepan.  Stir in the egg whites, place the pan over low heat, and, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, heat the mixture until it is runny, slightly white and hot to the touch, about 2 minutes.  Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the flour, then gradually mix in the melted butter.  Transfer the batter to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, pressing it against the surface of the batter to create an airtight seal, and chill for at least 1 hour.  (The batter can be kept covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.)

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).  Butter 12 rectangular financier molds (these were tested in 3-3/4 x 2 x 5/8-inch [10 x 5 x 1-1/2-cm] rectangular molds that each hold 3 tablespoons), dust the interiors with flour and tap out the excess.  Place the molds on a baking sheet for easy transport. Or use whatever pan you have handy. Just make sure to grease them a lot.
Fill each mold almost to the top with batter.  Slide the molds into the oven and bake for about 13 minutes, or until the financiers are golden, crowned and springy to the touch.  If necessary, run a blunt knife between the cookies and the sides of the pans, then turn the cookies out of their molds and allow them to cool to room temperature right side up on cooling racks.

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