Christmas fruit and spice friands

These fruit and spice friands are a delightful treat for a Christmas day brunch or breakfast.

  • 35 mins cooking
  • Serves 12
  • Print


Christmas fruit & spice friands
  • 1½ cups (240g) pure icing sugar
  • ⅓ cup ( plain flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ cup (40g) dried currants
  • 1½ cups (180g) almond meal
  • 6 egg whites
  • 3 teaspoons finely grated orange rind
  • 200 grams butter, melted
  • 200 grams crème fraîche
  • 300 grams fresh red currants
Spice syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • ½ cup (110g) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons mixed spice
  • ½ cup (125ml) water


  • 1
    Preheat oven to 230°C. Line a 12-hole (⅓-cup/80ml) muffin pan with paper cases.
  • 2
    Sift icing sugar, flour and spices into a large bowl. Stir in dried currants and almond meal; make a well in the centre. Add egg whites, rind and butter; stir with a metal spoon until combined. Spoon mixture into paper cases.
  • 3
    Bake friands for 5 minutes. Reduce oven to 200°C; bake for a further 12 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave friands in pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.
  • 4
    Meanwhile, make spice syrup. Place vanilla, sugar and mixed spice in a medium saucepan; stir to combine. Add the water; cook, stirring, over low heat for 2 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil. Boil, uncovered, without stirring, for 5 minutes or until syrup thickens slightly. Remove from heat.
  • 5
    Top friands with crème fraîche and red currants; drizzle with syrup. Dust with icing sugar, if you like.

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