Sunday, July 6, 2014

Pear Clafoutis. What's not to love?

People! Meet my new favourite dessert, Clafoutis. 

I can see many winter nights on my couch with a bowl of this custardy, flan-like goodness cradled in my hands. Clafoutis has always intrigued me and I’m disappointed in myself that it took me this long to make it. Clafoutis, where have you been all my life? Oh that’s right, on the tables of French bistros being served up to intellects and artistes (because that's what I think all French people are). Now you’re also snuggling with me on my couch in Tauranga.

Clafoutis is traditionally made with cherries but you can substitute all sorts of other fruits. Originally I was just going to roll with pears until I remembered the glut of feijoas I had out on the lawn. So in they went. And thank goodness for that. Pear and feijoa are a great match together, let alone with a delicious custard blanket encasing them. And did I mention cream? Heavy pouring cream. Oh my.

I read somewhere (i.e. wikipedia) that a clafoutis made without cherries is a 'flaugnarde'. Both are excellent words to say. Either way, clafoutis or flaugnarde, you are delicious and you are most definitely here to stay. Make this immediately, so you too can bundle up on the couch under a blanket and enjoy this deeply comforting dessert. Tonight this is going to accompany a screening of Charlie Chaplin's City Lights. I'm a lucky girl.

Pear & Feijoa Clafoutis

Butter, for greasing
Sugar, for sprinkling
1 large pear
10 feijoas (or use a different fruit if you prefer)
4 eggs
135g brown sugar
100ml cream
190ml milk
1 tsp Heilala Vanilla Extract
½ tsp almond extract (optional)
¼ tsp salt
70g flour

Grease a baking dish with butter and sprinkle sugar over so it sticks to the butter. Preheat oven to 170°C. Whisk the eggs and brown sugar together until pale and fluffy. Combine cream, milk, extracts and salt and stir into egg mix. Sift the flour over top and whisk to combine. Let sit while you prepare the fruit. Core and slice pear into thin wedges and scoop out feijoa flesh, place fruit in a single layer on the bottom of the dish and gently pour the batter over top. Bake for 35mins or until golden and the custard is firm. Sprinkle with icing sugar and enjoy.
*Weekly Tip: If you chill clafoutis it takes on a nice firm texture making it easy to slice into wedges. So, if (for some strange reason) you find yourself with any leftover, it makes a great lunch snack.

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