Cherry Madeira Financiers | Mother’s Day

cherry madeira financiersContinuing with menu ideas and treats for the upcoming Mother’s Day, I have another perfect addition to a brunch or tea time table; Cherry Madeira Financiers. Deliciously rich with browned butter and ground almonds; fun and festive with maraschino cherry confetti.

Why maraschino cherries you may ask? As much as I avoid preservatives, sulphides, HFCS and all the other no-no’s, I can’t resist maraschino cherries, I adore them. Loaded with sulphides, preservatives and an insane amount of red food dye, I should be running the other way, but it’s my one vice and I allow myself some occasionally.

One of my family’s favourite tea time cakes back in London, was one that a big department store carried. It was just a packaged cake but oh, it was so good. My mother wasn’t a baker so we made do with these rich, buttery cakes from the shop or fancy bakery tortes and cakes. As kids we didn’t complain, we had cake! 

cherry madeira financier

The big department store stocked, back then, various fruit cakes and this madeira cake that my family loved. On a recent trip to London, my father brought back all kinds of treats including our favourite fruit cakes, madeira cakes and cherry madeira cakes. I fell in love with the cherry madeira. It was perfect; combining my love for madeira cake and glacé (maraschino) cherries.

I have since then learned to make my own cherry madeira and decided to make my financiers in the style of my favourite cake. OMG! I don’t like to resort to overused, teeny, boppy, acronyms, but OMG! These were so good, I couldn’t stop eating them. It doesn’t help that they are a perfect mouthful and you just pop them in not thinking much of it. But those delectable morsels add up!!

cherry madeira financier

These are perfect with a cup of Earl Grey tea. The floral, citrus tones of the tea go very well with the financiers, but they are very good all by their lonesome too!

If anyone is wondering why these little cakes are called financiers, here is a little history on them. The pastry chef who created financiers, supposedly, had his bakery close to the French Stock Exchange. Originally, the financiers were made in the shape of rectangles to resemble gold bars. They were pretty small bars back then. Financiers are becoming popular again and they are appearing everywhere in many different shapes, sizes and flavours. They are open to many variations and that is one reason for their popularity, and also because everything mini or individual seems to be all the rage these days. I would take financiers over cupcakes any day.

cherry madeira financiers

Cherry Madeira Financiers | Mother’s Day

Serves: 24

  • 1 cup/126g powdered sugar
  • 1 stick/113g butter
  • ¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon/45g plain/all purpose flour
  • ⅔ cup/85g ground almonds
  • 4 egg whites
  • pinch of salt
  • 10oz jar/135g maraschino cherries, reserve 24 halves and chop the rest
  1. Preheat the oven to 375℉/190℃.
  2. Grease a 24 hole mini muffin tin, I used non stick spray.
  3. Divide the chopped maraschinos evenly between the 24 holes.
  4. In a small stainless steel pan, melt the butter.
  5. Heat on low until the butter is melted and begins to turn a golden brown.
  6. Be careful not to burn it, just when it begins to smell nutty and you see the milk solids turning a golden brown colour.
  7. Strain the butter into a heatproof measuring jug and let cool.
  8. Sift the flour, pinch of salt and powdered sugar in a bowl.
  9. Mix in the ground almonds, I sifted mine to get fine almond flour, but that's optional.
  10. In a bowl of a stand mixer or a using a hand mixer, whip the egg whites till soft and foamy.
  11. You want to have soft peaks.
  12. Mix the egg whites and the browned butter into the flour mixture.
  13. Fold gently till thoroughly mixed.
  14. Put a level tablespoon of batter into the mini muffin tins.
  15. I used a skewer to gently mix the batter and cherries together in the tin so that the cherries were better dispersed.
  16. Once all the holes have been filled, press the reserved cherry halves on top.
  17. Bake in the centre of the oven for 15 minutes.
  18. They should be golden brown and springy to the touch.
  19. Let cool in the tin for 5 minutes and then pull out the financiers and cool on a rack.
  20. Enjoy with a cup of Earl Grey tea.
I didn't want to lose the volume of the egg white batter and so I didn't mix in the cherries. It's easier to just drop them into the tin holes and once the batter goes on top, run a chopstick or a skewer through a couple of times to distribute the cherries. The cherries can be replaced with healthier ones...sour cherries or black cherries would be great. However, they wouldn't be Cherry Madeira Financiers then. There is a distinct taste to these and you have to like maraschino cherries to truly appreciate these. I warn you, they are very addicting.

cherry madeira financier

What naughty thing do you like to indulge in, knowing quite well it’s bad for you? I have found that you can buy a “natural” version of the maraschino cherries but I have only seen them online. I haven’t tried them yet (it’s just so much easier to pop into your local market and pick up the regular ones on short notice)

cherry madeira financiers

Hope you have a go at making my special maraschino cherry financiers, they really do have a wonderfully, unique taste to them. They are also great for a Mother’s Day breakfast or afternoon tea.

Need something savoury for your special menu? 




Have a great week everyone!


  1. Oh Nazneen……I love these beautiful little tea cakes. I’ve yet to make financiers….and I must put them on my bucket list for this year! Maraschino cherries are my wicked little obsession, too! And they are perfect in these pretty little cakes! Hope you have a wonderful mother’s day! : )
    Anne@FromMySweetHeart recently posted..Blueberry Orange Baby Bundts #BundtamonthMy Profile

    • Thank you Anne! They are so easy ., if you ever have egg whites leftover, just make a batch. Happy Mothers Day to you too!!

    • Thanks Sonali! I hope you post your recipe sometime… I would love to try your version!

    • Thanks Sarah, I am glad you agree! They are too delicious to not be eaten!

  2. I love maraschino cherries too! I even know how to make them, and will someday – although you steep them in booze (Maraschino Liqueur, to be exact – and no, it’s not sweet, nor are the cherries). Great dish. And we drink Earl Grey tea all the time, so these are perfect for us. Enjoyed the history, too. Thank you.
    john@kitchenriffs recently posted..Black-Walnut SandiesMy Profile

    • I am so happy to discover that I am not the only one with this maraschino obsession! There is something about that flavour. I hope you make recipe and post it, even if it has booze!

  3. These sound delicious, Nazneen, as is anything made with maraschino cherries. Yeah, they may not be the new quinoa but you’re not going to make a salad with them either. Here, they would lend their incredible flavor to the batter and, also, look good sitting pretty atop each financier. Great tip, too, about mixing the cherries and batter in the cups rather than in the mixing bowl. It would have taken me a few flawed batches before I figured that out — if I ever did. Thanks for sharing, Nazneen.
    ChgoJohn recently posted..Split Pea SoupMy Profile

    • You make me laugh John! They definitely are not going in a salad! Though you maybe prompted to make one once you realise you ate all 24 of the minis!

    • Thanks Denise. Yes, now I make them whenever I feel nostalgic! That’s my excuse 😉

    • Omg, Charlie, I could not stop eating them. I was popping them left and right! They are also known as friands… Maybe you know them as that?

  4. These look lovely and A perfect recipe to try the brown butter method I’ve been hearing so much about. I’m intrigued – what was the department store? Harrods? Selfridges? Fortnums? Where else? Many of the other stores have now gone. I’m with you on the Maraschinos. There’s something so reminiscent in that slightly synthetic flavour and fabulous colour. GG xx
    glamorous glutton recently posted..Hints And Recipes For The 50s Man Of The HouseMy Profile

    • Thanks GG. Believe it or not, it was Marks & Spencer’s! That’s where my dad got all our crisps and tea cakes. Our fancy birthday cakes came from Selfridges. Try the browned butter, it’s great… It tastes like toffee.