Cherry clafoutis might not be familiar to you but once you try this amazing French dessert recipe I think you will be won over.
Let’s start at the beginning. What is it?
What is a Clafoutis?
Clafoutis (or clafouti as it is more often spelled in non-French countries) is one of those wonderful French dessert recipes that looks complicated but isn’t really at all.
It consists of a simple batter poured over fresh fruit and baked in a buttered pan. The French traditionally use an oval baking pan but round works as well. So does a square pan, but it doesn’t look quite as pretty, and for this dessert we want pretty.
The clafouti batter forms a flan or custard-like filling that is studded with fresh cherries. I love flans and custards and one of my favorite fruits is dark cherries, so this wonderful recipe is perfect for me. I hope you think so too once you have tried it.
The favored fresh fruit to use in a clafoutis is dark sweet cherries, so this is a wonderful dessert to use when they are super sweet and abundant in the summer. You can also use frozen cherries instead of fresh, so it’s a dessert you can enjoy year around as well.
Although black cherries are the traditionally the favorite fruit used in this dessert, other fruits work just as well. If dark cherries are not available or not your favorite, try this clafoutis recipe with red cherries, plums, apples, pears, peaches, cranberries, blueberries, blackberries or even prunes.
Clafoutis is usually served at room temperature or slightly warm, not hot out of the oven. So you can make this recipe early and let it sit before you need to serve it.
Sifting Flour Baking Tip:
Here is a wonderful baking tip about sifting flour that comes direct from one of the best bakers around, The Barefoot Contessa, Ina Garten.
Sifting flour means to pass it through a small strainer, called a sifter before you use it. Sifting really does make cakes, muffins and other baked goods lighter, so it’s a good idea not to skip this step.
So many people do skip this step though and many bakers don’t even own a sifter. Still, most baking recipes call for the flour to be sifted.
Here is Ina’s tip for baking with flour.
Don’t bother to sift the flour. Ina says that if you stir the flour around before you measure it out of the bag or storage container it’s in, it lightens up the flour and eliminates the need to sift it. So that’s what I do now.
As I put my spoon or scoop into the container of flour, I really mix it around to allow air to lighten up the texture of the flour. It really does seem to work, as anything I have made since I began doing that has worked out well.
I hope you enjoy this amazing and easy French dessert recipe. Let me know in the comments what fruit you used and how it turned out.
- 1 1/2 pounds dark sweet cherries, pitted (and thawed if frozen)
- 1/3 cup superfine sugar
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 eggs
- Pinch of salt
- 2 cups milk
- 1 tablespoon cherry brandy, or kirsch (optional)
- powdered sugar, optional (for serving)
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Butter an oval or round baking dish and place the cherries in it. (Make sure they are pitted! You don't want to chomp on a pit when you eat it!).
- Sift the flour and salt into a small bowl. Beat the eggs and sugar in a large bowl, until it is creamy, then fold in the flour and salt mixture.
- In a saucepan, warm the milk slightly over low heat. Stir the milk and cherry brandy into the egg mixture. Beat well until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter over the cherries.
- Bake for 30 minutes until the batter is set and somewhat golden.
- Serve warm or at room temperature. Cherry clafouti is traditionally served dusted with powdered sugar.
- Makes 6 servings.
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