Easy to make, fresh, light, and rustic. Clafouti (pronounced “clafootee”) is a traditional French countryside dessert, originating in the Limousin region of France. Clafouti is a wonderful summertime dessert that is traditionally made with dark, sweet, unpitted cherries, but almost any fruit can be used. If you choose to leave the cherry pits in be sure to alert your guests to the presence of the pits. This recipe is more custardy than cakey, not too sweet, with a full, ripe cherry flavor. The thick custard batter is poured over the fruit in a deep buttered baking dish, and the cherries float to the top. The batter puffs when baked and forms a light crust. Normally served warm with a sprinkling of powdered sugar, but serving clafouti chilled is just as delicious
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature, for preparing pan
1 pound (about 3 cups) dark sweet cherries
1 cup all purpose flour
¾ cup granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
4 large eggs
1½ cups milk (preferably whole milk)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 tablespoons cherry brandy or Kirsch (optional)
1 or 2 teaspoons confectioners’ (powdered) sugar
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare one 9 inch round layer cake pan or one 9 or 10 inch cast iron skillet at least 1½ inches deep, ceramic baking dish or stoneware baking dish with a 2 quart capacity and at least 1½ inches deep. Butter the bottom and sides of the pan with 1 tablespoon butter.
- Wash the cherries, remove the pits with a cherry pitter and place on paper toweling to drain and dry. Set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt; whisk together to mix. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, lightly beat the eggs with a wire whisk until foamy. Beat in the milk, vanilla, and cherry brandy or kirsch until combined. Gradually whisk the egg mixture into the flour mixture, whisking until batter is smooth and free of lumps.
- Place cherries in the bottom of the baking pan. Pour the batter over the cherries. The cherries will bob up and float on the surface of the batter.
- Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on wire cooling rack for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.
- Before serving, use a fine-mesh sieve to dust the top of the clafouti with confectioners’ sugar.
- Cut into pie-shaped wedges and serve warm directly from the baking pan or remove from pan and place on a serving plate. A delicious option is to refrigerate the clafouti first and serve chilled.
- Refrigerate leftovers
Bloom, Carole, The International Dictionary of Desserts, Pastries, and Confections, Hearst Books, New York, 1995
Daley, Regan, In the Sweet Kitchen, Artisan, New York, 2001
The Essential Dessert Cookbook, Bay Books, Australia, 2008
The Williams-Sonoma Baking Book, Oxmoor House, New York, 2009
Description: Baked Fruit Custard
Pan: One 9" Round Layer Cake or One 9" Cast Iron Skillet, Ceramic or Stoneware
Pan Prep: Buttered
Oven Temp: 375o
Prep Time: 1 Hour
Baking Time: 40 to 45 Minutes
Serves: 8 to 10
Storage: Cover and Refrigerate
Recipe Type: Custard, Fruit Dessert, Cherry
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