Sakura financier

With cherries being in season, I had to make something fun with them! I had done cherry tarts in the past, but I wanted to change it up a little. While I love the combination of almond and cherry, I wanted to also use the salted cherry blossoms I still had, and that’s when I came up with this dessert. A financier, which is one of my favorites, is a brown butter and almond spongecake. I infused the financier with the salted cherry blossoms, while also folding rainier cherries into the batter, just to add both the blossom and the fruit into the cake. For my garnishes, I went with a pink sakura gelee, which is one of my favorites, and a ruby chocolate and sakura namelaka(mousse), another one of my favorites. These little cakes are the perfect accompaniment for a tea party setting, as they are small, easy to transport, and would go great with a warm cup of freshly brewed earl grey or chamomile.

For the sakura namelaka:
2 salted cherry blossoms
4oz ruby chocolate
1/3 cup heavy cream, in 2 parts

In a blender, puree the blossoms, ruby chocolate, and half of the cream until fully combined and smooth. Whip the remaining cream to stiff peaks. Refrigerate for 20 minutes, then fold in the remaining cream. Pour into half-sphere molds and freeze for at least an hour.

For the financier:
4 tbsp unsalted butter
6 salted cherry blossoms
4 egg whites
1 tspn vanilla extract
1/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
1 cup almond meal
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup Rainier cherries, pitted and chopped up

Heat up the butter until is begins to brown. Take off heat and add in the blossoms, allowing the salt to dissolve into the brown butter. Brush a thin layer of the brown butter inside of 6 cupcake molds, and then place the blossoms into the bottom of each mold. In a bowl, whip egg whites, vanilla, and confectioner’s sugar until stiff peaks. Fold in the remaining brown butter, almond meal, flour, and cherries into the egg white mixture. Divide into the 6 lined molds. Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes. Cool down before attempting to unmold.

For the gelee:
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp agar
1 tspn pink pitaya powder
3 salted cherry blossoms

In a pot, bring water, sugar, and agar to a simmer. Chop the cherry blossoms into smaller pieces, making sure to really separate the petals. Once the agar is fully dissolved, take the pot off heat and stir in the remaining ingredients. Pour into silicone molds and freeze for at least 10 minutes. Cut into smaller pieces.

To garnish:
Rainier cherries with the pits removed

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