I know–it’s quite bold of me to say that my French cherry clafouti recipe is the best recipe for clafouti—there are plenty of great ones out there. But I’ve hit upon some secrets to making your clafouti better than ever. So if you’ve ever been underwhelmed by clafouti, try my recipe. Hint: It’s not just about the clafouti recipe itself. There are tricks. Read on!
Clafouti is a wonderfully home-style recipe that surrounds beautiful summer fruit with luscious golden custard. As one of my recipe tester for The Bonne Femme Cookbooksaid, “it brings those sweet, rich qualities you love in egg specialties like French toast, crèpes, and crème brûlée—but with the bonus of fresh summer fruits.”
And yet….sometimes when I order a cherry clafouti—even in France—I’m underwhelmed by rubbery custard, not enough fruit, and the sense of monotony that sets in after the first few bites.
My strategies for solving all that:
• Get the right ratio: Follow my recipe, and you’ll have just the right amount of sweet fruit to rich custard.
• Do. Not. Overbake.: Seriously–get that clafouti out of the oven the minute it’s done. Check it at 35 minutes. The sides should be set, but if the middle still jiggles, that’s okay.
• Serve with some spiked whipped cream. The light and airy whipped cream beautifully contrasts the rich, dense custard. And that tipple of cherry brandy in the whipped cream echoes the flavors of the clafouti. There’s also that delightful warm /cool (clafouti/whipped cream) effect happening, too.
• Serve clafouti ever-so-slightly warm: The Clafouti will be at its best about an hour after it comes out of the oven. Time accordingly. Refrigerate leftovers. Cold clafouti is amazing, but really, just-baked, slightly warm clafouti has the edge.
All that said, here’s my easy recipe for Clafouti. Enjoy!
Cherry Clafouti Bonne Femme
Makes 6 servings
12 ounces pitted fresh sweet cherries or frozen pitted sweet cherries, thawed and drained well
3 large eggs
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon kirsch (cherry brandy) or other cherry-flavored liqueur
Pinch of salt
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole milk
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
Spiked and Sweetened Whipped Cream (see recipe, below)
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Butter and sugar a 9-inch round nonmetal baking dish with 2-inch sides (a deep-dish pie plate will do).
2. Spread the cherries in the baking dish. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the eggs, sugar, vanilla, kirsch, and salt on medium speed until well combined. Slowly beat in the flour, milk, and cream until combined. Pour the batter over the cherries.
3. Bake until a thin knife inserted near the center of the clafouti comes out nearly clean (a few crumbs are fine) and the top is a deep golden color, about 35 to 40 minutes. If the top is brown before the custard is done, loosely cover with a sheet of foil. Place on a wire rack to cool, but serve warm. Just before serving, dust the top of the clafouti with confectioners’ sugar. Slice into wedges and serve with Spiked and Sweetened Whipped Cream.
Note: Never worry about a clafouti that sinks in the middle…It probably will, and it’s a badge of honor that you’ve made a beautiful true-to-France homemade dessert.
Sweetened Spiked Whipped Cream: Place 3/4 cup cold heavy cream into a chilled mixing bowl. Add 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar and 2 teaspoons kirsch (cherry brandy) or other cherry-flavored liqueur. Beat on medium speed with an electric mixer until soft peaks form.