One last thing with pistachios and roses (see here for pistachio rose cookies). These were originally called pistachio saffron rose financiers, but were made in miniature brioche pans instead of financier molds, and the baking times/volumes were just unclear across the board. So I adapted the recipe to make miniature cupcakes, in standard mini-muffin pans – I got a total of 43 – and I changed the ingredients a bit and reordered them in a more logical sequence.
These were absolutely fantastic! The saffron is really worth it here, and the rose-honey syrup just makes the flavors sing. I’ll definitely be making them again! Note that I used crushed dried rose petals instead of making my own candied rose petals (you could also buy those ready-made). This is one place where you should use butter instead of vegan margarine; I’m not aware of any American brands that currently label themselves as lactose-free, but if you make sure that the nutrition label states 0 grams of sugar, then it is de facto lactose-free butter.
1 ½ sticks of lactose-free butter, plus more for greasing molds
2/3 of all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting molds
1 cup of granulated sugar
¼ cup of finely ground raw almonds
¾ cup of finely ground raw pistachios, plus more for decorating
2 small pinches of saffron, about 25 threads of saffron in all, ground in a mortar and pestle
1 pinch of salt
6 egg whites
2 Tbsp. of honey
1 tsp. of rose water
crushed dried rose petals or candied rose petals (for decorating)
Preheat the oven to 375 °F with the rack placed in the middle. Grease and flour a mini muffin pan (my pan has room for 24 mini muffins, so I made 2 batches, one after the other, for a total of 43 miniature cupcakes).
Start browning the butter in a shallow pan over medium heat. Keep the butter swirling around until the butter begins to smell caramelized and begins to turn tan. Once the butter turns a deep brown, remove the pan from the heat and pour into a separate small bowl.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, finely ground pistachios and almonds, saffron, and salt; stir to combine. Add the egg whites and whisk the mixture together until smooth. Pour the browned butter in stirring until combined.
Pour batter into molds and sprinkle chopped pistachios over them. Place on a baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes or until the edges just start to tan and the tops are springy. Set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, warm the honey and rosewater in a small bowl in the microwave or over the stovetop. Brush the top of the mini-cupcakes with the syrup and sprinkle with crushed rose petals.