a clafoutis is the perfect solution to over enthusiastic fruit shopping in the summer! if you’re like me, you probably buy more fruit (the peaches are irresistible this year) than you can eat, and feel bad when they start going bad. a clafoutis is so easy to prepare with a few cups of fruit and ingredients you most likely have in your pantry that you can make it for dessert right before you sit down to dinner. i remember the first time i had a cherry clafoutis in france-my friend’s mother made them quickly in individual baking bowls with whole un-pitted cherries and placed them in the oven just before we sat down to eat our dinner. the sweet delicious smell enveloped us while we ate and subtly hinted of the treat we were about to enjoy. when i finally took my first bite, i immediately loved the combination of almost tart cherries with the sweet pudding-like cake that surrounded them like a fluffy cloud. this is how wikipedia describes one of my favorite desserts:
clafoutis (French pronunciation: [klafuti]; Occitan: clafotís [klafuˈtis / kʎafuˈtiː]), sometimes in Anglophone countries spelled clafouti, is a baked French dessert of black cherries arranged in a buttered dish and covered with a thick flan-like batter. The clafoutis is dusted with powdered sugar and served lukewarm. although traditionally clafoutis is made with black cherries, it is just as good with sliced peaches (and most other fresh fruits). there are so many variations of recipes for the batter, but over time i have adapted my own version from trying several different ones including Julia Child’s and Martha Stewart’s (who offers more than one version). this time, i prepared my clafoutis too far ahead of the serving time, which was not a great idea-this simple dessert is really best served fresh and warm with a side of whipped creme fraiche (see recipe in this post-scroll down) or vanilla ice cream. recipe to serve 6-8:
- 3 cups sliced fruit (mine was a combination of ripe organic peaches and nectarines)
- 1/2 cup raw cane sugar
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1/4 cup creme fraiche (or heavy cream)
- 3 organic eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract, or better-1 vanilla bean with the seeds scraped out of it
- 1-2 tsp lemon zest
- 2/3 cup organic whole wheat flour
- small pinch of sea salt
- see below for gluten free version
1. dust the inside of a lightly buttered baking dish with a tbs of sugar, and preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. blend the ingredients above (minus the fruit) together on high in a blender for about a minute (stop once to scrape the sides).
3. pour half of the batter into the baking dish, and start lining up the fruit from one side of the dish to the other. you can also use individual baking dishes.
4. pour the remaining batter over the fruit, sprinkle with a touch of cinnamon (if you like it) and bake for 45 minutes to an hour. serve lukewarm preferably with a side of ice cream or whipped creme fraiche. good dessert, fruit saved!
for gluten free version: in the book “La Tartine Gourmande” Beatrice Peltre uses a combination of:
1/3 cup millet flour, 1/4 cup almond meal, 1/4 cup corn starch instead of flour. i highly recommend her cook book & recipes for gluten free baking.
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