I was curious as to how this week’s assignment, coconut friands, would turn out. The batter didn’t seem hard to assemble at all and somewhat healthy to boot (all egg whites). However, once I started mixing the coconut into the smooth batter, I realized it smelled strangely familiar. And my suspicions only heightened while the mini cakes were baking. Finally, after tasting a quickly cooled little cake and with the help of my friend (Codename: Candelabra), the familiarity of these cakes was clear. These coconut friands are almost identical in smell, taste, and texture to puto, or Filipino rice cake. Filipinos make similar tiny, moist, and slightly sticky rice flour-based coconut cakes, but we add food coloring or tinted flavor essences to achieve pastel colored cakes, like purple ube essence or mint green pandan essence. We also steam the cakes as opposed to baking them. Regardless, these coconut friands were winners in my book. Easy effort for a tasty treat!
To see how others fared with coconut friands, check out French Fridays with Dorie where we make recipes from Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table: More Than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours.