What is Clafoutis?
The foundation for this dessert uses a simple warm custard element featuring fresh seasonal fruit. You can substitute different types of berries and stone fruit in place of the cherries. Experiment by adding dollops of cherry or other fruit jams to make a richer clafoutis. The custard part (eggs, flour, sugar, milk) remains unchanged, so this recipe can be used with your favorite fruits as they come into season.
The Purist Clafoutis
A true French clafoutis is made with unpitted cherries. Purists will attest that the pits in the cherries give the dish an almond flavor and must be left in. I prefer not serve food you have to work to enjoy. Likewise, it’s easy to forget about the pits, and biting into one can potentially break a tooth. With this recipe, I’ve added almonds and almond extract to mimic this taste.
Clafoutis or Flaugnarde
A flaugnarde is this same dish, simply using other types of fruit. On the day I made this particular recipe, I happened to have several fresh peaches, so I mixed them in. People tend to be more familiar with the term clafoutis than flaugnarde, but either term applies to this dish (purists aside). Regardless of the term you wish to use, adding this to your repertoire gives you a creative option to enjoy with guests.
This dish is suitable as a dessert, afternoon snack or special breakfast entree. It is very versatile and will serve you well, no matter the season.
Cherry Peach Clafoutis
Fresh baked cherry and peach clafoutis is a classic French dessert that can be enjoyed morning, noon and night. It's wonderful as an afternoon treat with coffee or tea.
- 1 cup cherries, pitted
- 1 cup peaches, peeled and stone removed If you don't have peaches just add another cup of cherries.
- 2 tbsp almonds, blanched and sliced
- 3 whole eggs
- 1 whole lemon, zested
- ½ cup brown sugar You can substitute white granulated/caster sugar.
- ½ cup flour
- 1 cup milk
- ½ tsp vanilla extract (avoid artificial vanilla)
- ½ tsp almond extract
- 1/8 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp peach schnapps (optional)
- 1 tsp kirsch (optional) Kirsch is a cherry distilled brandy
- 1 tbsp cherry syrup (optional garnish)
- 1 scoop vanilla ice cream (optional garnish)
- 1 sprig mint (optional garnish)
Preheat the oven to 350° F / 175° Celsius.
Prepare an oven safe baking dish, (8X8 or 9X10 casserole dish or a 14x4.5 inch rectangular tart pan) by either buttering and flouring the dish (or use Baker's Joy). Pour in the batter to 1 ½ - 2 inches in depth. The batter will puff up so the mix in the dish should only come about half way. Do not fill a dish up to the rim or it will overflow.
Prepare the cherries by pitting them (if you choose).
Prepare the peaches by removing the skin and cutting the peach around the pit. Discard the peach pit. I've cut the peach into large rough dice about the same size as the cherries.
Once the baking dish is prepared, add the fruit to the dish and sprinkle in the sliced or slivered almonds.
In a medium sized mixing bowl add the eggs, sugar, flour and stir to incorporate. Once the mixture comes together add the milk, vanilla, almond extract and pinch of salt. Whisk the kirsch, peach schnapps (if using) and stir in until well incorporated.
Pour the batter over the fruit and add the dish to the oven. Make sure the batter has enough space to expand. Place the dish on a cooking sheet to catch any potential overflow.
Bake in the oven at 350° F for approximately 50 minutes. To check for doneness, the clafoutis should still be a little wiggly in the center. It is done when you insert a toothpick in the center and it comes out clean. Remove the clafoutis from the oven and cool on a wire rack at room temperature until cool (about 20 minutes).
Once the clafoutis is cooled, sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve. The clafoutis is great on its own, but a little scoop of vanilla ice cream and a squiggle of cherry syrup never hurt either.
There are so many options using this basic custard-like batter. Try this with fresh sliced strawberries and a chiffonade of fresh basil for a delicious alternative.