Allyson Gofton - Friands and Friandise

Publish Date
Monday, 18 May 2015, 2:31PM
By Allyson Gofton

When baking delicacies like friands (little almond cakes) and friandaise (petit biscuits) , use the best ingredients to achieve the finest flavour.  Dainty is the key word, so the smaller the finished goodie the better. Here are some favourite recipes.

Hazelnut Biscuits (pictured)
When I crunch into warm freshly roasted and peeled hazelnuts my taste buds are in seventh heaven!

1 cup hazelnut oil (or use half hazelnut oil and half canola oil )
¾ cup sugar
1 egg
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
¼ cup finely chopped toasted hazelnuts (about 15 hazelnuts, halved)


  1. Mix together the hazelnut oil, sugar and egg.

  2. Sift the flour and baking powder together and stir into the bowl with the finely chopped hazelnuts.

  3. Roll heaped teaspoonful lots of the mixture into balls and place on a greased baking tray. Place a halved hazelnut into the centre of each biscuit.

  4. Bake at 160°C for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden. Cool on a cake rack. Store in an airtight container.

Cooks Tips:

  • For a more economical recipe, use half hazelnut oil with half canola oil.

Pear And White Chocolate Friand Slice


1¼ cups icing sugar
½ cup flour
2 x 70 gram packets ground almonds
100 grams white chocolate, chopped
Grated rind 2 lemons
6 egg whites
175 grams butter, melted
2-3 firm ripe pears, peeled and sliced

Lemon Syrup:
¼ cup boiling water
¼ cup caster sugar
2 tblsp lemon juice
Grated rind of 1 lemon
2 tblsp limoncello or lemon vodka (optional)


  1. Sift the icing sugar and flour into a bowl. Stir in the ground almonds, white chocolate and lemon rind. Mix well.

  2. In a clean bowl, lightly beat the egg whites until frothy. Stir them and the cooled, melted butter into the almond mixture until smooth.

  3. Spoon the mixture into a 20x30cm baking paper-lined slice tin. Spread out evenly.

  4. Finely slice the pears and arrange them in two strips along the length of the tin.

  5. Bake at 180ºC for 20-25 minutes or until the cake is firm to the touch in its centre. It should be shrinking from the sides of the tin.

Lemon Syrup:

  1. Stir the boiling water and sugar together until dissolved. If necessary, warm in a microwave. Add the lemon juice, lemon rind and limoncello or vodka if using. Pour the hot syrup over the just-cooked Pear and White Chocolate Friand Slice.

Cooks Tips:

  • Many people are put off trying to make friands because they don't have the proper cake tins. Bake the mixture in a slice tin instead and serve gently warmed as a dessert.

Persian Rice Cookies
Known in Persia (Iran) as 'nan' berinji', these heavenly shortbread-like biscuits are make with rice flour, and are flavoured with cardamom.

Preparation Time:
15 minutes
Cooking Time:
20 minutes
Makes 40

250 grams butter, softened
½ cup icing sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon rosewater
2 cups rice flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cardamom

Rosewater butter icing:
1 quantity butter icing (see recipe here)
Few drops rosewater


  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Lightly grease 1-2 baking trays or line with baking paper.

  2. Beat the butter and icing sugar together until very light and creamy. Add the egg and rosewater and beat well.

  3. Sift the rice flour, baking powder and cardamom together and sprinkle evenly over the top of the creamed mixture. Stir in with a large spoon.

  4. Roll teaspoonfuls of the mixture into balls and place on the prepared trays. Press down with the tines of a fork. Alternatively, the mixture is ideal to use in a biscuit forcer (press).

  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes until the cookies have begun to brown very lightly around the edges.

  6. Carefully transfer to a cake rack to cool. Store in an airtight container.

  7. If wished, join two biscuits together with the rosewater butter icing.

Rosewater butter icing:

  1. Beat the butter icing with a few drops of rosewater to flavour.

Cooks Tips:

  • Rosewater is made from distilled fragrant rose petals, and as it is very strong in flavour, it should be used with a gentle hand.

Take your Radio, Podcasts and Music with you