Clafoutis is an easy French dessert that’s perfect for using up summer fruit. Nothing like homey cobblers or crisps, clafoutis is decidedly more elegant yet even simpler to make. Use whatever fruit you have on hand — cherries are classic — whip up a quick batter in your blender, and bake for a dessert to impress both dinner and overnight guests alike.
Dessert or Breakfast
Since clafoutis is built on an egg-heavy batter similar to crêpes or Dutch baby pancakes, it can be served either for a lovely dessert or as a rich breakfast. While Dutch pancakes (and crêpes) are made with a similar batter of eggs, milk, flour, and sugar, their ratios and cooking methods make a significant difference in the final product. Dutch pancakes bake up crispy, while clafoutis has a tender, almost custard-like texture.
Any Fruit and Almost Any Pan
Clafoutis is traditionally make with unpitted cherries — supposedly the pits add a bitter, almond-esque flavor to the dish — but can be made with almost any tender fruit. Pitted cherries can go in whole or halved, raspberries whole, fresh figs and strawberries halved as well. Other stone fruit like peaches and apricots should be pitted and sliced.
Clafoutis is traditionally baked in a ceramic tart pan or casserole dish. You can also bake them in a glass baking dish, but I prefer a cast iron skillet which gives the most delicately crispy edge to the end product. Steer clear of thin metal baking pans though, as they will burn the edges before the clafoutis is set.
Again, tradition would dictate that we whisk together a clafoutis batter by hand, but the blender makes quicker work of the whole thing. One important note however: Blend all of the wet ingredients, including the sugar, together before adding the flour, then quickly pulse the flour in just until incorporated. This will keep the batter and the clafoutis tender.
How To Make Fruit Clafoutis
What You Need
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
12 ounces fresh fruit, such as cherries, berries, or stone fruit
1 cup whole milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh lemon zest
1 /4 teaspoon fine salt
Powdered sugar, for serving (optional)
Measuring cups and spoons
10-inch cast iron skillet
Cherry pitter (optional)
- Heat the oven and butter the pan:: Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 400°F. Coat a 10-inch cast iron skillet with the butter and set aside.
- Prepare the fruit: Remove the stems and pit the cherries. Pitted cherries can go in whole or halved, raspberries whole, fresh figs and strawberries halved as well. Other stone fruit like peaches and apricots should be pitted and thinly sliced; set aside.
- Blend the wet ingredients: Combine the milk, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a blender or food processor fitted with the blade attachment and process until the batter is smooth, about 20 seconds.
- Pulse in the dry ingredients: Add the flour, zest, and salt and pulse until just incorporated, 5 to 7 pulses.
- Add the batter to the pan: Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Top evenly with the fruit.
- Bake: Bake until set, puffed, and light golden brown around the edges, about 50 minutes.
- Cool and serve: Place the skillet on a wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes (the clafoutis will deflate). Dust with powdered sugar if using, cut into wedges or scoop and serve warm.
- Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat in a 300°F oven until warmed through.