What is a Clafoutis?

I was invited to prepare a Clafoutis for a group of 12. Even though I had no idea what a Clafoutis was, I accepted the challenge. So, what is a Clafoutis?

Clafoutis, pronounced: kla-foo-tee, is a baked FRENCH dessert of fruit, usually black cherries, arranged in a buttered dish and covered with a flan like batter. It is more elegant than a cobbler and is much easier to make. It has the consistency of a thick creamy custard and comes together in minutes; which makes this the perfect dish to serve if you’re not a French pastry chef but, want it to appear like you are an expert. So, put on your French Beret, make some cafe au lait and get started! For the purpose of this article we are using cherries. You can use raspberries or throw caution to the wind and experiment with other fresh fruits; none of the canned gooey stuff.

There are a few different recipes online, but the key ingredients are the same.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tbs. unsalted, melted butter
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 lb. frozen cherries, thawed and drained (the key is drained)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. grated fresh ginger (if you like ginger it is not necessary)
  • Confectioner’s sugar for dusting

Here we go, you can do this!

Pre-heat oven to 325º F. Butter a 10 inch gratin dish or ceramic 10″ pie plate. Be generous with the butter. Take the cold stick of butter and swirl it around to cover the inside surface of the plate.

In a medium size bowl, toss together the drained cherries and a 1/4″ cup of the sugar and ginger. Set aside until needed.

In a large bowl, whisk the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar, the cream, eggs, vanilla and melted butter,. TIP: Do not put hot butter in the mixture! It reacts with the eggs and starts to cook them in a way. Make sure the eggs are thoroughly whisked in until you get a creamy consistency.Whisk in the flour and salt until smooth. Pour into the prepared pan. Now is the time for the cherries. Sprinkle the cherries over the top. They will sink.

Bake at 325º for about 35 – 40 minutes. Until it is almost a dark golden brown. LET IT COOL for about 10 minutes. Dust with confectioner’s sugar to give it that “fancy” appearance and SERVE WARM.  I tried it 3 ways: warm is delicious, room temperature is ok and completely cooled is less than desirable. IMG_2619

So there you have it! You are now a proficient at the Clafoutis challenge. Enjoy!