Combine juice, rinds, tea bag, spices, bay leaf and 750ml water in a saucepan over medium heat, bring to a gentle simmer, cook until infused (8-10 minutes). Remove tea bag, add prunes, simmer for 10 minutes, set aside.
For thyme financières, cook butter in a saucepan over medium heat until nut brown (4-6 minutes), set aside to cool. Whisk eggwhite in an electric mixer until starting to foam (1-2 minutes), gradually add sugar, then honey. Combine well, add flour, almond meal and thyme, then gradually add melted butter in a thin stream until a thick batter is formed. Refrigerate for 1 hour to rest. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 180C. Divide mixture among eight patty-case-lined, 80ml-capacity muffin tray moulds, smooth tops and bake until golden or until a skewer withdraws clean (10-15 minutes). Set aside, keep warm.
For orange and Cognac Chantilly, whisk cream, sugar and rind in a chilled electric mixer bowl until soft peaks form (1-2 minutes), then whisk in Cognac. Serve immediately with financières and prunes.
Note Agen prunes, from Agen in France, are available from
select delicatessens. If unavailable, substitute other pitted
This recipe is from the July 2009 issue of Australian Gourmet