These raspberry financiers are a delightful and elegant dessert that combines the rich and nutty flavours of a classic French financier cake, topped with plump and juicy raspberries soaked in rosé wine for an extra indulgence.
These dainty little teacakes are a luxurious treat, with moist, tender and fluffy texture, and fantastic flavour where brown butter and almonds shine through.
French financier recipe is perfect to use for an afternoon tea, dessert or for gifting to loved ones all year round. They are ideal to enjoy with a cup of coffee or tea, but are equally delicious as a snack on their own.
A little about financiers
Before we dive into how to make financier cakes from scratch, let's briefly look at where they originated from. These delightful little cakes come from French region of Lorraine. Their rich history dates back as far as 17th century. They were originally made by Visitandine nuns, and some bakeries in France still sell them under that name.
They have light, moist and crisp exterior and are packed with flavours thanks to brown butter and almonds. This combination is what is making them a perfect treat with an afternoon tea or coffee.
The name "financier" is believed to derive from the traditional rectangular mould the cakes are baked in, which resembles a small bar of gold.
The classic French financiers recipe use everyday, basic kitchen cupboard ingredients. They can be enjoyed plain, or flavoured with many other ingredients like fruits, citrus zest, nuts, chocolates or spices.
We are making it a bit more indulgent by adding raspberries macerated in rosé wine, but that step is totally optional!
Here's the list of what you will need, along with some brief notes and some suggestions for substitutes, where possible:
- Butter - Unsalted butter will be best to use in financiers, but if you only have salted butter on hand, you can use it too. We are melting the butter slowly to make brown butter, which will provide a lot of incredible flavour in these little cakes.
- Raspberries - Use fresh or frozen raspberries (if using frozen, there is no need to thaw them first).
- Rosé wine - Optional ingredient. For an extra indulgence I like to macerate the berries in wine, but you can leave it out of this recipe.
- Egg whites - I always use large eggs in my baking recipes. Save the yolks for another recipe, or freeze them to use later.
- Icing sugar - Classic financiers are made traditionally with icing sugar (also called confectioner's sugar or powdered sugar). But you can also use caster sugar, granulated or brown sugar, or even a mix of both.
- Ground almonds - One of the key ingredients for delicious flavour and signature texture. Use almond flour or almond meal as an alternative.
- Flour - Only a small amount of flour to provide an extra structure to financiers.
Scroll to the bottom of this post for the recipe card and the full list of the ingredients.
The process of making these easy raspberry financiers is rather simple and straightforward. First step of soaking raspberries in wine is optional, and if you'd like, you can just skip it.
When it comes to brown butter, if you are in a hurry, or just don't fancy doing it, you can also skip it and simply use melted butter.
💭Tip: You can make this recipe by hand, start to finish, but I like to use an electric hand-held mixer to whip the egg whites to medium peaks (alternatively, use a kitchen whisk). As there is no raising agent in this recipe, whipping the egg whites will give the cakes lighter and fluffier texture.
1. Place the raspberries in a bowl or a jug and pour in the rosé wine. Allow the berries to soak for 2 hours.
2. Make the brown butter (see below), and allow it to cool.
How to make brown butter
Making brown butter is optional, but it's one of the central flavour components of financiers. It's easy to make, and it's delightfully fragrant and aromatic. It also gives these raspberry financiers a truly special flavour.
To make brown butter, place unsalted butter in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Allow the butter to melt completely, stirring often. Continue to cook until the butter starts getting bubbly and foamy. It's a sign of water evaporating from the butter.
💭Tip: If you have a stainless steel saucepan, use it. Stainless still pan will allow you to clearly see the colour of butter, making it easier to know when to take it off the heat.
Continue to cook the butter for 5-8 minutes. Brown butter is ready when the milk solids at the bottom of the saucepan turn golden brown and it should have a delicious, nutty aroma. Remove it from the heat, pour into small bowl and let cool completely.
3. In a large mixing bowl sift together icing sugar, ground almonds and flour.
4. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites (by hand or using an electric mixer) until medium peaks, about 3 minutes.
5. Using metal spoon or spatula, gently fold the dry ingredients into the egg whites.
6. Pour the cooled brown butter into the mixture and fold gently to combine.
7. Cover the financier batter with plastic foil and rest it in the fridge for an hour.
8. Transfer the batter into baking mold or financier pan (or a muffin pan), and top with raspberries. Bake for 22-25 minutes.
💭Tip: I like to pipe the batter into the financier pan / mold using piping bag. But you can also just spoon it or scoop it into the baking pan. Use back of the spoon to smooth out the batter on top. Do not over-fill your cases or moulds with the cake batter. Aim to fill ¾ of each cup or cavity.
When baked, remove the cakes from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes, before removing them from the moulds. Transfer cooled raspberry financiers into wire rack and allow them to cool completely.
Almond financiers are extremely versatile and really easy to customise. You can easily add a layer of flavour with additional ingredients. See below for some suggestions:
- Burst of citrus - Add some freshly grated orange or lemon zest into the cake batter. An extra tablespoon or two of citrus zest will be plenty to transform plain financiers into delicious citrus flavour.
- Extra toppings - You can also get creative with various toppings. A single batch of financier batter can offer so many different results! Try swapping raspberries for some blueberries, cherries or juicy figs. Use flaked almonds, chopped nuts or even chocolate chips to create different versions of financier cakes.
- Spices - Why not try adding a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg to the cake batter? Warming spices are a great way to turn traditional financiers into a cozy seasonal bake.
- Experiment with different extracts - Use a couple of drops of vanilla, coffee, coconut or maple extracts for even bigger array of flavours.
Traditional financiers cakes are baked in small rectangular moulds (silicone or metal). Some versions out there are also using oval-shaped moulds or pans. If using financier moulds, be sure to thoroughly grease them, to prevent the cakes from sticking to the pan.
But you do not need a financier pan to make financiers. A simple muffin or cupcake tray will also work. Mini muffin pan is another good option. When using muffin or cupcake pans, be sure to line them with paper liners.
These raspberry financiers taste best eaten fresh, on the day when they are baked. You can store them at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 48 hours, but their texture will be more dry and crumbly (still delicious!).
Financiers are suitable for freezing for up to 1 month. Make sure to use freezer-friendly bag to store them in. Thaw in the fridge overnight, or at room temperature for about 1 hour.
Place thawed cakes in an oven heated to 160°C (325°F) for 5-7 minutes to reheat them and bring them back to freshly baked texture.
French financier recipe is also ideal to make ahead! The batter can be placed in the fridge and stored there for several days. Make sure to place a layer of clingfilm or plastic foil directly on the batter, to stop it from drying.
- Avoid over-mixing the cake batter. Once you folded all the ingredients together, stop mixing as soon as they are combined and you have smooth batter.
- Allow the batter to rest in the fridge for at least an hour. This will develop the flavour of your financiers even more.
- Grease your moulds well, as the batter is on the sticky side. This will prevent the cakes from getting stuck in the pan / mould.
- Do not over-fill the cake moulds / muffin cases with cake batter. Aim for ¾ full or about 80% of your moulds capacity.
- Do not remove baked financiers too soon from their baking pan or moulds. Allow them to cool slightly, for about 10 minutes first. If you try to release them too soon, they may break and fall apart.
Frequently asked questions
No. Although traditional financiers are baked in small rectangular moulds to resemble the bars of gold, you do not need a special mold to bake them. You can use muffin or cupcake tray or mini muffin or mini cupcake baking tin. If using mini muffin/ cupcake tray, reduce baking times to roughly 12-14 minutes (then check and decide if they are ready or need longer in the oven).
Although the cakes are made predominantly with almond flour, there is small amount of plain, all purpose flour in the batter. I haven't personally tested this recipe with gluten-free flour, but I'm pretty sure it will work just fine. I would love to hear from you if you try gluten free version!
This recipe yields about 9 small financier cakes in my moulds. You can easily double or triple it, if you'd like to make bigger batch.
No, they are slightly different. While both are classic French teacakes, they differ in taste and in shape. Financiers are using egg whites only, while madeleines are made using whole eggs. Madeleines are also made with addition of baking powder, while financiers do not have a raising agent in them.
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- silicone or metal financier molds or muffin tray
- 2 large mixing bowls
- hand-held electric mixer or kitchen whisk
- Piping bag optional
- 150 ml rose wine optional
- 100 g raspberries fresh or frozen
- 100 g unsalted butter
- 3 large eggs, whites only
- 150 g icing sugar, plus extra to dust
- 60 g ground almonds or almond meal
- 60 g plain flour
- Optional step. Macerate raspberries. Place raspberries in a small bowl or a jug with the rosé wine and leave to soak for 2 hours.150 ml rose wine, 100 g raspberries
- Make the brown butter. Place the butter in a small saucepan over a medium heat and allow it to melt completely, stirring often. The mixture will start getting foamy and bubbly. Continue to cook for 5 - 8 minutes, until you notice the light brown speckles start to appear at the bottom of the pan and the mixture gives off nutty smell. Remove from the heat, pour into small bowl and leave to cool completely.100 g unsalted butter
- Mix the dry ingredients. Sift the icing sugar, ground almonds and flour together into a large bowl.150 g icing sugar, plus extra to dust, 60 g ground almonds or almond meal, 60 g plain flour
- Whip the egg whites. Using hand-held electric mixer or a kitchen whisk, whip the egg whites for a couple of minutes until foamy, or until medium peaks.3 large eggs, whites only
- Fold in the dry ingredients. Add the dry ingredients into the bowl with egg whites and using a metal spoon or spatula, fold until combined. Pour in the cooled brown butter and fold again to combine, until you have smooth batter. Do not overmix.
- Rest the batter. Cover the batter with clingfilm and place in the fridge for at least an hour. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 160°C (325°F). Prepare the financiers mould or muffin tin. Grease the moulds with melted butter, or if using muffin tin, line the tin with paper liners.
- Divide the batter. Remove the batter from the fridge. Pipe (or spoon) the batter into baking tin or moulds. Smooth the top with the back of the spoon. If using raspberries soaked in wine, drain the berries first, then place a couple of raspberries on top of each cake.
- Bake the financiers. Bake the cakes for 22- 30 minutes, depending on the size of your moulds, until they are golden brown and springy to the touch.
- Cool and enjoy. Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes, then remove from the mould / baking pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack. Dust with some extra icing sugar and enjoy!
Please note that all my recipes are developed and tested in metric grams. I recommend that you use digital scales for a more accurate results. I have provided a conversion to US customary in the recipe but please note that I haven’t tested using this method.
- Avoid over-mixing the cake batter. Stop mixing when all the ingredients have been folded together and the batter is smooth.
- Rest the financier batter. Resting the batter in the fridge for at least an hour will help to develop the grater flavour in these little cakes.
- Grease the moulds well with melted butter to prevent the financiers sticking to them. Use paper liners if you are using muffin tin to bake them in.
- Fill the cake cases / moulds only up to ¾ full to avoid them spilling and expanding too much.
- Allow these raspberry financiers to cool for 10 minutes before removing them from their moulds or baking tin.
This post was originally published in August 2016. It has been updated with new photos, revised recipe and tips in October 2023.