Cherry Clafoutis is a dish I’ve been meaning to blog with some time. However, as was said to me on Instagram last night, it’s hard to resist eating the fresh cherries before they get added to the batter! I mean look at them, they are just so pretty. I couldn’t stop taking photos of them.
Anyway, moving on from my sad little life, I did manage to make it, write down the ingredients and take pictures of the finished dish. That’s a good start when you’re a food blogger 🙂 I have to be honest, I’ve never eaten Cherry Clafoutis other than when I’ve made it myself. So I’m waiting for someone to correct me and tell me it’s nothing like a proper clafoutis.
I must’ve read ten different recipes when developing my own version, from chefs like Julia Child to Raymond Blanc to Tom Kerridge. Every recipe was completely different from the one I read before. So I’m guessing it’s one of those recipes that every French Grandmother has her own version of. Basically the cherries are put into a baking dish and covered with a pancake type batter and baked until the batter puffs up like a sweet Yorkshire Pudding. Not too dissimilar to a Dutch Baby pancake. The texture is a cross between a thick pancake and a set custard. It is perfect served warm or at room temperature. So if you are making if for dessert, pop it into the oven as you are starting your dinner and it should be ready in time.
Variations: Some recipes add almond essence, I’m not a fan so I use vanilla instead. I also do not like kirsch so I used rum. Feel free to use tinned cherries if you can’t bring yourself to use the fresh ones. I do pit my cherries as I would hate to be responsible for someone biting down on a stone, but traditional recipes seem to leave them in to add an almond flavour. James Martin makes his in a filo pastry crust, I am intrigued but I think the texture of this is what makes it so appealing. Use other fruits such as apricots, blueberries or pears in place of cherries if you prefer.
- 300g of cherries, pitted
- 1½ tbsp of caster sugar
- 1 tbsp of dark rum
- 40g of unsalted butter
- 1 tbsp of demerara sugar
- 90g of plain flour
- A pinch of salt
- 50g of caster sugar
- 2 eggs plus 1 egg yolk, beaten
- 250ml of whole milk
- ½ tsp of vanilla extract
- The zest of half a lemon
- Toasted flaked almonds
- Icing sugar to dust
- Start by prepping the cherries. I don’t have a special cherry pitter so I use the blade of a large knife to gently squash the cherries so that the skin just bursts. Push through the stone and discard them.
- Sprinkle over the caster sugar and rum and allow the fruit to soak for 30 minutes to two hours.
- Melt the butter in a pan. Use a pastry brush to grease a 9″ pie dish with some of the butter, keeping the rest for the batter. Sprinkle the demerara sugar into the dish, this will give a little crunch to the crust of the clafoutis.
- Sieve the flour and salt into a mixing bowl. Add the second lot of caster sugar and mix together. In another bowl whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla, lemon zest and the remaining melted butter.
- Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and slowly add the wet ingredients, whisking the whole time.
- When all of the ingredients are fully combined, leave the batter to one side to rest for about 20 minutes. Just as if making pancakes, this will allow the gluten in the batter to relax and produce a lighter bake.
- Preheat the oven to 180c/160c fan/gas mark 4.
- When you are ready to bake the clafoutis, remove the cherries from the syrup and arrange them in the dish. Pour the sugar-rum syrup into the batter mix and give it another whisk.
- Pour the batter over the cherries and bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes or until the batter has puffed up and is golden brown.
- Allow it to cool slightly, it will shrink back down into the dish. Sprinkle over the toasted almonds and icing sugar. Traditionally a clafoutis is served on it’s own but I don’t thank anyone would be too upset if you add a scoop of vanilla ice-cream or whipped cream.
- I can verify that this tastes great served at room temperature for breakfast the following day.
If you wouldn’t mind indulging me in one more cherry pic….