Peaches are prime right now and make lovely desserts. Clafoutis is a rustic French dessert made with stone fruit…fruit with pits. Cherries and apricots are traditional but just about any fruit will work in this custardy pancake concoction. Mark Bittmen of the New York Times makes clafouti with mandarin oranges. Could be interesting. Chef Keith Snow makes a fabulous fresh fig clafoutis which is my personal favorite.
The batter is like a thin pancake batter with more sugar. Amaretto or almond extract goes very well with peaches just like brandy or rum. The addition of cinnamon brings out the fresh peach flavor even more. This slice is served warm with just a dusting of powdered sugar. You can make it more decadent with a dollop of creme fraiche, Greek yogurt, or French vanilla ice cream and the leftovers go great with a cup of coffee the next morning.
Clafouti is a snap to make with fresh or canned fruit. If you use canned fruit reserve the juice and use 1 cup of juice in place of the milk and add 1/4 cup of creme fraiche (sour cream) for the remaining milk.
You can skin the fresh peaches or not…the choice is yours. They’re good either way. Just wash and dry the peaches, halve them and remove the stones then cut in half again. The recipe given here will work with cherries, apricots, even pears and blueberries. Try star anise and pear, lemoncello and blueberries, lychees, mango or apple and rum.
Basic Batter Ingredients:
- 1-1/4 cups milk
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 pinch of salt
- scant 1/2 cup flour
- 1 Tbsp vanilla or liqueur
- 3 large eggs
- 3 medium-sized peaches, skinned, pitted and quartered
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Spray or butter a 9-inch pie plate or tart pan.
- Whisk milk with sugar and salt. Add flour, vanilla or liqueur and whisk to combine.
- Add eggs and whisk to combine.
- Arrange peaches in bottom of pie plate, alternating cut-side and smooth-side up. Sprinkle with cinnamon.
- Pour batter over peaches. Bake for 40-45 minutes until top is golden brown and a cake tester comes out clean.
- Let set for 15 minutes and dust with powdered sugar before slicing.