Here’s a riddle: What do a basket of berries and 3 eggs have in common? A light and simple dessert called clafoutis. Clafoutis is a baked French dessert similar to flan, consisting of fresh fruit smothered in a lightly sweetened egg batter. The result is a pudding-like concoction redolent with seasonal fruit.
Berries are everywhere now, lining the tables at the farmers market and teetering on shelves at our local store. Never one to hold back, I pile them into my basket and head home, nibbling on my purchases while thoughts of tarts, jams and fools run through my mind. Sometimes, when time is short, I know I will make a clafoutis.
Clafoutis is remarkably quick and easy to prepare with a short list of ingredients. The result is rustic yet elegant, generously showcasing the season’s fruit. Bake the clafoutis in a gratin dish or cast-iron skillet. If you would like to fiddle with presentation, divide the batter between individual ramekins. I had a little extra batter left over and filled asian soup spoons for a dessert inspired amuse-bouche.
Makes 1 – 10 inch clafoutis or 8 – 6 ounce servings.
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
3 large eggs
3/4 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup whole milk
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
12 ounces (350 g.) fresh berries, such as blackberries, blueberries, raspberries
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 375 F. (190 C.) Butter a gratin dish, cast iron pan or ramekins.
Beat sugar and eggs in bowl of electric mixer until light and fluffy, 3-4 minutes. Mix in cream, milk, flour, lemon zest, vanilla and cinnamon. Set aside.
Arrange berries in the tart pan. Pour custard over the fruit. Bake in the oven until the filling is golden brown and set, about 35 minutes. (If using ramekins, baking time will be reduced to about 25 minutes). Remove and cool slightly. Before serving, dust with confectioners sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature with whipped cream.