Green Tea (Matcha) Financiers

Since financiers were part of last month’s food adventures in France, and matcha is part of this month’s about Japan, I thought it would be fun to combine the two using David Lebovitz’s popular recipe from his Ready for Dessert cookbook.

He is the baker blogger of Chez Panisse fame, now living in Paris.  (I wrote about him last year when I bought his My Paris Kitchen cookbook.)  He says that this recipe was influenced by the Japanese patissier, Sadaharu Aoki, who “wows Parisians” when he combines classic French desserts with Japanese ingredients like sweet red beans and black sesame seeds.

I was so happy the book arrived today so I could get in the kitchen and bake.  Baking can be very therapeutic, and I really needed the escape.  It hasn’t been a good week.

Financiers are traditionally baked in rectangular molds, but this recipe uses the more commonly available mini muffin pans.

This is a very tasty tea cake! I can now see why matcha is so popular in baked goods and treats.

Super easy to make.  Next time I will remember to rap the pans on the counter to eliminate the air bubbles.

This is the key ingredient:  Matcha powder 
Look for it in the tea aisle.  It comes in a small tin.  

Green Tea Financiers
(adapted from David Lebovitz’s cookbook, Ready for Dessert)

Makes 24 bite size tea cakes

2 t. sesame seeds (a mixed of black and white)
1/8 t. flaky sea salt
2/3 cup (55 g) almond meal/flour
1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
1 T. toasted white sesame seeds
5 T. (45 g) all-purpose flour
2.5 t. green tea powder (matcha)
1/4 t. baking powder
big pinch of salt
grated zest of 1 lime
1/2 cup (125 ml) egg whites (about 4 large egg whites)
6 T. (3 ounces/85 g) unsalted or salted butter, melted and cooled slightly

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Generously butter a 24 cup mini muffin tin. In a small bowl, mix together the 2 t. of sesames seeds, and sea salt, and sprinkle the muffin cups with 2/3 of the mixture.

In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, combine the almond flour, the sugar, the white sesame seeds, the flour, green tea, baking powder, salt and lime zest.  Process until finely ground and mixed well.

Add the egg whites, and cooled butter, then pulse until the mixture is smooth, stopping to scrape down the bowl as needed to ensure that the ingredients are thoroughly combined.

Divide the batter evenly among the prepared muffin cups, then sprinkle the tops with the remaining sesame-salt mixture.

Rap the muffin tin on the counter once or twice to release any air pockets and level the batter.  (I forgot to do this and you can see the air bubbles on the surface of my tea cakes.)

Bake just until the financiers feel firm when gently pressed with a finger, about 12 minutes.

Let cool completely, then remove the financiers.

He says that the batter can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days before baking.  And says that they tasted the best on the day that they are baked, but will keep for up to a week in a tin, although the crusts will soften, if you do.

A basket full of tasty tea cakes!


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