Clafoutis is the classic home-baked dessert. It’s the French cook’s way of bringing something lovely and sweet to the table any night, and it takes just minutes to stir together before popping in the oven. A bit like a baked custard, a bit like a cake, clafoutis will remind you of everything you love about other sweet, eggy dishes—French toast, bread pudding, and crêpes.
Keep in mind that the sides of the clafoutis may rise while baking, but they will sink and even out nicely once cooled. And if the custard has a few cracks, count them as your badge of honor—you’re serving a charmingly rustic and authentic homemade French dessert.
WHAT YOU NEED
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 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 tbsp kirsch (cherry brandy)
Pinch of salt
1⁄2 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole milk
1⁄4 cup heavy cream
1⁄4 cup confectioners’ sugar
Spiked whipped cream (see note), for serving
Peach Clafoutis: Substitute 4 fresh peaches (about 11⁄2 pounds), peeled, pitted, and sliced, for the cherries. Substitute peach brandy for the kirsch.
WHAT TO DO
Preheat the oven to 190°C. Butter and sugar a 9-inch round non-metal baking dish with 2-inch sides.
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.
Bake until a thin knife inserted near the center of the clafoutis comes out clean and the top is a deep golden color, about 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 clafoutis with confectioners’ sugar and serve in either scoops or wedges topped with spiked whipped cream.
Note: To make spiked whipped cream, place 1 cup cold heavy cream into a chilled mixing bowl. Add 2 to 4 tbsp confectioners’ sugar. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form. Beat in 2 tbsp kirsch until soft peaks return.