Cherry & almond clafoutis
This recipe is one of my all-time favourites. The reaction of people when they eat it is one of surrender and comfort…. the pudding equivalent of slipping into a warm bath! If you want to keep some cherries reserved for eating unadorned, then do add some peaches, apricots or any other summer fruit. In my experience, a bad clafoutis is more common than a good one, which led me to devise this recipe. It is somewhere in between a custard and a cake, best served just warm rather than hot, so allow about 15 mins for it to cool down after it comes out of the oven. Feel free to change the herbs or flavourings as you wish. The thyme and lavender here is not obligatory but it does lift the dish. The tonka bean adds a lovely almond flavour but these you would need to order online, so feel free to omit. The lining of the tin with the generous coating of butter and sugar is important because it forms a delicious crust as it cooks.
200g Whipping cream
200g Salted butter
1 Vanilla pod, split & scraped
2 Tonka beans, grated on a microplane (optional)
1 Egg (large) and 3 Egg yolks
100g Plain flour
100g Ground almonds
- Bring the milk, cream and butter up to a simmer then remove from the heat, add the vanilla and cover. Leave to infuse for 30 mins then pass through a sieve.
- In a stand mixer, beat the eggs, egg yolk, sugar, flour and almonds until smooth; it will be stiff. Add the infused milk mix in a gradual stream to combine to a thick batter.
To line the cake tin
25g Salted butter, softened
4 tbsp Demerara sugar
- Rub butter inside of an ovenproof dish all over then scatter with demerara to cover completely, shaking off any excess. (It will look like quite a lot of sugar).
Filling, baking & topping
300g Cherries, stoned
3 Ripe peaches or apricots, cut into 1/6ths
2 tbsp Flaked almonds, lightly toasted in the oven until pale golden
1 tbsp Thyme, picked
1 tbsp Lavender
- Preheat the oven to 180C.
- Pour the batter into the cake tin to 2/3rds way up, then scatter the fruit evenly within this.
- Bake on a heavy tray at 180C for 25mins or until set.
- Scatter over the almonds and thyme and bake for another 3 mins until lightly toasted.
Icing sugar & Crème fraiche
- Leave to cool until just warm, then dust with icing sugar and serve with crème fraiche.