I’m always looking for simple, rustic desserts that are easy to prepare. Clafoutis are a great treat when summer rolls around - baked custards filled with sweet and juicy cherries. Unlike a traditional custard, the batter contains flour and has a thicker, more pancake-like texture. When it’s done the crisp, slightly-burnt edges of clafoutis give way to a soft, creamy interior. I prefer it warm out of the oven, but it can also be served cool, and finished with powdered sugar or cream.
Traditionally, the cherry pits are left intact to keep the juices from leaking. Some people also say keeping the pits emits a subtle almond flavor. However, cherry pitters are relatively inexpensive, and can save your guests from accidentally chipping a tooth. You can try it both ways to see if you can taste the difference !
I love that the recipe below can be used as a blank canvas for any fruit. If cherries are out of season - you can also substitute fruits like pears, peaches, or berries and then the dish is referred to as a “flaugnarde.”
2 1/2 c cherries
1 c whole milk
1/2 c granulated sugar
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
2 Tbsp butter, melted
1/2 c all purpose four
Powdered sugar, optional
Whipped cream, optional
Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Grease or butter a shallow baking dish or cast iron skillet (roughly 9”) and place the fruit at the bottom of the pan.
Whisk the milk, eggs, sugar, butter, and extracts in a large bowl. Add the flour and combine until smooth. Pour the batter over the fruit into the prepared pan. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the custard is set with light golden brown edges. A knife or toothpick should come out clean.
Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes and let the clafoutis deflate. Serve with a dusting of powdered sugar or whipped cream.
Whipped Cream (optional)
1 c heavy whipping cream
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Put the mixing bowl and whisks in the freezer for at least 20 minutes prior. Pour heavy whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla extract into the bowl and whisk for 2-3 minutes on medium to high speed until the cream forms stiff peaks.