Monday, 19 July 2010

Cherry Clafoutis

thank you BVG for this wonderful idea... I've never made it before but it's a winner...

so, the answer to 'what to do with a bowl of luscious, plump, dark red, hand-picked, free, road-side cherries'... is 'make a cherry clafoutis'... originally a French dish, this is a perfect solution to an excess of the cherry... custardy, creamy, fluffy and deeply intense whilst retaining that wonderful cherryness that happens to cherries once they're baked.

it also, so perfectly sums up July in Lincolnshire... ripe and sticky!

the only issue was that once i googled clafoutis I was inundated with millions of slight variations in recipe for such a simple dish... why is it that every one's recipe instructions started with... 'this is a classic French pudding' yet none of them were the same!  I must have scoured roughly 50 recipes, from The Times, to Jamie Oliver... from James Martin to my classic French cookbook (which believe it or not, didn't have the recipe!!!)... some added cream... some added ground almonds... some had currents...?

in the end I plumped for the James Martin version, with a little added help from Jill Dupleix from The Times... anyhoo it turned out very good, so I think I've done OK.

300g cherries - pitted (no idea how many I had, just used them all!
300ml milk
3 eggs
60g caster sugar
60g plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

First, murder your cherries... quite literally, it looked like I'd killed someone... red spots everywhere!

next, in a large bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar to a nice white froth, then add the vanilla extract, add the milk, then sift the flour and baking powder and give it a final whisk.

now, place the cherries in a shallow pie dish, pour the batter onto it and bake in an oven for about 30 minutes or until well risen and golden... once it looks ready take it out and leave it to cool and set slightly... but not too long, you want to eat it warm, like a set custard pancake!

eat and of course, enjoy!


  1. You've been really busy! Like all traditional dishes, there are a million variations aren't there. Where did you pick the one above from? It looks spectacular- and free cherries (envy, envy...)!

  2. Thanks... went with the James martin one... it was really lovely, although I actually prefer it cold today!

  3. Did you pit the cherries? When I have been looking around you kind of get mixed reviews of whether you should or not. I don't think it would be very appealing having to sit and spit out the pits personally.

  4. My question too! To pit or not to pit ...? And ... were your cherries sour cherries or Bing-like?

  5. the older recipes all said not to pit, the newer recipes said to pit. Quite frankly, who wants to sit and eat a pie and have to a) risk breaking your teeth and b) continuously spit out the pits? It's not as though leaving them in makes it taste any different.... my cherries were freshly picked sweet cherries.

  6. So glad you didn't go for currents (just seems wrong to me!)

    Looks fantastic - wish we had supersonic (beam me up Scottie) type post - I'd love a slice!!!

    Kinda chuffed you went for my idea (she says grinning).

  7. I've never made a clafoutis that didn't sink like lead both in the dish and the tum, so I'm really interested in this recipe which has minimal flour, I've aways thought it should be more custardy than battery..if you see what I mean. Definitely one to try at home..

  8. Oh! Bliss. You've made my mouth water. I made a simple crumble with ours but this is rather more chic.


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