Friday, 13 February 2015

A Valentine's Clafouti

Clafouti - I just love that word?   Clafouti ........ Claaaaafoooouuti ........ I can just keep saying it over and over again!! I also never know whether to include the 's' at the end clafouti or seems to be a case of your say potato I say........... so I have decided to go for clafouti!

So, a few days ago, I was thinking about a valentines meal - not sure why - Andrews away at a conference in Poland and I have my parents staying so all in all not really a Feb 14th type of feeling in my life at the mo.... but anyway I thought we could still have some heart shaped puds to celebrate the day! I was going to go for a simple chocolate pud or a pannacotta, but found some lovely fresh figs in my local grocers - so thought, why not a clafouti and the fresh figs have a heart shaped look about them - so really it's perfect for a valentine's dessert!

I always feel that baked fruit are a wonderful way to end a meal either just poached in a liquor and served with cream or cooked in a simple pie or cobbler..... and clafouti is a a french dish, usually of cherries, baked in a sweet batter - just perfect. The batter rises up during cooking and then folds back in on itself enveloping the fruit.

Along with the fig clafouti I also made a few cherry ones to stay with tradition....

Here's my recipe - it's actually pretty darn simple but I think the results look stunning ......

serves 6-8

3 eggs
200ml full fat milk
100ml single cream
60g flour
half teaspoon baking powder
55g soft brown caster sugar
1tsp vanilla extract
knob butter
3 figs and 200g (approx) cherries - if you want to make half & half or just double for the single fruit
a few flaked almonds
icing sugar for dusting - I forgot this!

and either 6-8 ramekins or a large baking dish

Pre-heat the oven to 180C/gas 4

First make up your batter - just whisk up the eggs, add the milk, cream and vanilla and gently whip until you have a smooth mix....

Sift your sugar, flour and baking powder into a large bowl and then slowly pour in the the egg mix and, using a fork, simply fold the flour mix in to the liquid......

You should end up with a lump free, thick batter......

 Grab your ramekins, or large baking dish, and butter the insides well.....

Arrange your fruit in the dish and then gently pour in the batter. Place on a baking sheet and pop in the oven for 30-35 minutes - don't open the door during cooking or the batter will collapse before it should!

Whilst they are in the oven grab a non-stick pan and roast your flaked almonds in the dry pan until they have browned slightly - most of mine browned (well actually blackened!) a little too much so top tip is to keep an eye on them!

Once the batter has browned and the fruit is cooked through remove from the oven and sprinkle on your almonds and ideally ( I forgot) dust with icing sugar just before serving....

Serve hot, or just warm, with a thick pouring cream, a vanilla custard or simply just some ice-cream.....

We also made up a larger mixed fruit clafouti - because we wanted to try both fruits and eating two desserts each would just be piggy! 

So happy Valentine's to you all I hope you are all showered with chocolates, flowers and love 

Have a great weekend
Love Lizx