Sunday, September 6, 2009

Cherry Clafoutis

I made this classic cherry clafoutis earlier this summer to finish off a dinner of rosemary crusted lambchops and roasted vegetables. I was feeling very Provencale so I decided we needed a simple yet elegant fruit dessert to complete this very summertime meal.

I made this cherry clafoutis using a recipe I use for cranberry clafoutis but substituting sweet summer cherries for the cranberries.

I am a fan of tart flavours so I think I preferred the cranberry version (which I will post later) although I love the way cherries burst when they are cooked.

Clafoutis batter resembles crepe batter and is somewhat like a dense, custardy pancake.

The clafoutis batter can be used for any kind of fruit but cherries are traditional.

Simply scatter whatever fruit you are using in a pie plate and pour over the batter. Bake for half an hour and then you have a very simple yet satisfying dessert. The French traditionally do not pit the cherries, baking the clafoutis pits and all. but I did pit my cherries because I don’t like the idea of spitting out pits all through dessert.

I like to serve my clafoutis with a vanilla crème anglaise, a runny custard sauce that is essentially unchurned vanilla ice cream. The hint of vanilla lends a bit of sweetness to the not very sweet clafoutis and dresses up a very simple classic dessert.

Cranberry Clafoutis


Serves 6

Time: about 40 minutes

  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream (35% M.F./ whipping cream)
  • 6 tablespoons milk (1 % is ok)
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (or enough to fill a pie plate) fresh sweet cherries
  • icing sugar for dusting

    1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Using an electric beater, beat the eggs and sugar until frothy. Whisk in cream and milk. Add flour and mix until batter is smooth.
    2. Spray a 10-inch pie plate or gratin dish with vegetable spray or grease with butter. Pour batter into the pan, then sprinkle with cherries. Bake until golden brown, about 30 -35 minutes. Cool in pan and dust with icing sugar. Serve warm with creme anglaise or vanilla ice cream. Serves 6.

From: Cranberries:Recipes from Canada’s Best Chefs by Elaine Elliot

Classic Crème Anglaise

  • ½ cup whipping cream or 18% cream
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • 2 or 3 egg yolks
  • ½ tsp vanilla

    1. In a small saucepan, heat together the cream, milk and 1 tbsp of the sugar over medium heat until bubbles form around the edge.
    2. In bowl, whisk the egg yolks with remaining sugar; whisk in hot cream mixture in thin stream. Stir back into pan; cook stirring constantly, until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, 2-3 minutes.
    3. Strain into clean bowl; stir in vanilla. Lace plastic wrap directly on surface; refrigerate in airtight container until cold, at least 1 hour. Makes about 1-1/4 cups.

To make ahead: refrigerate in airtight container for up to 3 days.

From: Canadian Living Magazine June 2008

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