So today V and I got locked out of our house. I hate these automatic locks. You have to be so careful when you step out of the house for even a second. And, when you are not careful, then you are stuck outside, hoping and praying that accidentally some window has been left open. Now our bathroom window was open- yay! or wait no yay!. The window was way up and we tried getting in through that, but couldn’t. We checked for any other window that was unlocked and luckily our bedroom window was open (now yay!). V was able to get in through that and once he was in, he let me in. Never thought I would be breaking in my own house. Like I said, I hate these automatic locks.
Now, for the last two weeks Foodgawker and TasteSpotting have been full of people posting about cherry clafoutis: a classic french country dessert. I have never eaten clafoutis before, but after seeing so many pictures and people raving about it, I wanted to give it a try. I also wanted to get rid off the cherries in the fridge. So for Office Thursdays I decided to make it.
The verdict: Its quite an easy dessert to make, if you already have pitted cherries. I did not, so the pitting took a little effort, though traditionally, the french leave the pits in, saying that they impart an almond flavor when baked within the custard, something no authentic clafoutis should be deprived of. But, I did not want people at V’s office accidentally breaking a tooth biting into the pits, so I pitted the cherries. As for the baked dessert- I did not care too much for it. I should have known that I would not like it even before making it because everyone said it tastes like custard and well, I am not a big fan of custard- in fact I do not like custard at all.
For an unbiased opinion I turned to V and asked what he thought of it and he liked it since he likes custard as well. But then his opinion isn’t completely unbiased. He never says he doesn’t like anything I make, which makes it really difficult to know what tastes good and what doesn’t. Anyway, it was polished off by his colleagues in office, so I am assuming it wasn’t that bad after all. But, as for making it again- I do not think I will be baking this until I try the real thing to know how it actually tastes and how close I was to the original thing.
A clafouti (the older spelling is clafoutis) is a french country dessert, with fruit baked in a batter that ends up being something between a custard and a pancake, puffed, golden and crisp.
adapted from Classic Home Desserts by Richard Sax
- 2 1/2 cups (about 1 pound) cherries
- 1 1/4 cups milk (I used coconut milk because I wanted to get rid of it)
- 1/4 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling (I rubbed a little lemon zest in the sugar)
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract or 2 tsp vanilla & 1 tbsp cognac or kirsch
- pinch salt
- 1/2 cup sifted all-purpose flour
- sugar, for sprinkling
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter the bottom and sides of an 8 or 9-inch round or oval gratin dish or pie pan.
- Rinse, stem and pit the cherries, placing them in a colander set over a bowl to catch the juices.
- In a blender or food processor, combine the milk, sugar, eggs, vanilla, salt, flour and the reserved cherry juices. Process until blended and smooth, no longer. (If you aren’t using a machine, whisk together all the batter ingredients except the flour and cherry juices in a bowl. Whisk in the cherry juices, and then flour; do not overmix.)
- Place the cherries in the buttered dish. Pour the batter over the cherries (or strain it over, if it’s slightly lumpy). Sprinkle the top with sugar.
- Bake until the edges are dark golden and a toothpick inserted in the center emerges clean, usually 45 to 50 minutes. The clafouti will fall when it comes out of the oven; cool on a wire rack. Serve warm.