Sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a bowl, then stir in the sugar.
Mix together the almond essence, melted butter, buttermilk and blackcurrants in a separate large bowl, then very lightly stir in the dry ingredients. The mixture should still look a little lumpy.
Spoon the mixture into a 12-hole muffin tin lined with muffin cases, sprinkle over the flaked almonds, then bake in a preheated oven, 190°C (375°F), Gas Mark 5, for 20–25 minutes until risen and golden. Carefully lift the cases from the tin and transfer to a wire rack to cool.