Gluten and Dairy Free Orange, Blackberry and Cardamom Financiers

Since discovering financiers years ago on a school trip to Paris I have adored them and when I changed my diet fifteen years ago they became even more important in my small but growing repertoire of go to recipes for afternoon tea with friends. Iced they are best eaten on the day of baking when their edges are slightly chewy but they will still taste wonderful four or five days later if stored in an airtight container

Makes: 10 to 12

Preparation: 20 minutes

Baking: 15 to 20 minutes

Cooling: 35 minutes

Equipment: Individual mini loaf cases or 12-hole muffin tin

Freeze: Yes before icing. Defrost in the fridge and warm in a 170/150fan/gas 3 oven for 5 mins


200g (7 oz) dairy free spread

250g (9 oz) icing sugar

50g (2 oz) gluten free plain flour

½ tsp xanthan gum

1 tsp ground cardamom

¼ tsp salt

175g ground almonds

225g egg whites (approx. 6 large eggs)

Grated zest of 1 orange

20 blackberries cut in half lengthways


 8 large blackberries plus 30 to 40 small ones to garnish

1 tbsp water

Juice of ½ lemon

165g icing sugar


  • Preheat the oven to 200/180fan/Gas 6. Place the individual mini loaf cases on a baking tray or line a 12 hole muffin tin with cases
  • Melt the dairy free spread in a heavy based saucepan over a gentle heat and set aside to cool
  • Sift the icing sugar, gluten free flour, xanthan gum, ground cardamom and salt into a mixing bowl. Add the ground almonds and stir to combine thoroughly
  • In another mixing bowl whisk the egg whites until they form a light floppy foam
  • Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients, gently pour in the egg whites and add the orange zest. Carefully stir in the melted dairy free spread and stir until the ingredients form a soft batter
  • I pour the batter into a large jug to make dividing the batter between cases a lot easier but you can use a large spoon. Fill the cases 2/3 full and then place 4 blackberry halves onto the surface cut side down
  • Bake for between 15 to 20 minutes and the edges of the financiers are golden brown and the centres spring back slightly when gently prodded
  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a metal cooling rack
  • To make the icing place the 8 large blackberries into a bowl with the lemon juice and water. Crush the berries with a fork releasing the juice then press the mixture through a fine mesh sieve to extract even more juice and to remove any pips
  • Sift the icing sugar into a medium bowl and add the blackberry juice, stir to combine. The icing needs to be thick enough to retain its shape on top of the financiers so you may need to add a little lemon juice or icing sugar to get the correct consistency
  • Place the small blackberries on top for decoration. Leave the financiers for a couple of minutes for the icing to set before serving
  • Iced financiers are best eaten on the day of baking


If you can’t find blackberries swap them for raspberries or blueberries both will compliment the subtle flavours of cardamom and orange beautifully