fruit

Clafoutis, An Easy Fruit Dessert

by Anne Maxfield on September 11, 2017

Accidental Locavore ClafoutisThink of clafoutis as being French equivalent to a cobbler, but being French, a little more elegant.

However, that doesn’t mean it’s one of those desserts you have to fuss over. It’s actually easier than a cobbler—all you do is pop a few ingredients in a blender and pour them over some fruit.

Traditionally the fruit is cherries, but any fruit that can be baked can be used.

I had some cherries, peaches and blueberries, on their own, not enough to make a pie or anything and a few too many to eat before they went bad, so clafoutis seemed like the way to go.

Accidental Locavore Cherries for ClafoutisClafoutis

  • 1 ¼ pounds (570 grams) sweet cherries
  • 3 large eggs at room temperature
  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
  • ½ cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar (mixed use)
  • 1 1/3 cups milk
  • Softened butter for greasing the baking dish

Preheat the oven to 375°.

Liberally grease a shallow 2-quart baking dish with butter.

Stem and pit the cherries. Place them in a single layer in the baking dish.

In a blender, mix the eggs, flour, vanilla and almond extracts, ½ cup sugar and milk together until smooth.

Pour the batter over the cherries and sprinkle with the remaining 3 tablespoons of sugar.

Bake about 45 minutes until it is just set. A knife or toothpick poked in the center should come out relatively clean.

Serve and enjoy!

Accidental Locavore Clafoutis BatterMy verdict: It’s super easy and delicious. We served it warm, but you can serve it warm, room temperature or cold—all good.

I used a mix of cherries, blueberries and a peach that I cut into small chunks (but didn’t peel).

Since I’ve had nut allergies in the past, I didn’t use any almond extract, which probably made it really non-traditional, but it didn’t take away from the taste.

Another added bonus is that it’s really good for breakfast the next day, whether you bother to warm it up or not.

It’s a versatile recipe to know about, you can switch up the fruit or take the sugar out, substitute some cheese, add veggies and make it a savory dish.

 

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Beige, Toothless Desserts

by Anne Maxfield on June 10, 2013

Accidental Locavore Rice PuddingAs the Accidental Locavore was writing about No. 9, it occurred to me that I’m a little fussy about desserts. First of all, savory foods interest me much more than sweets. A plate of cheese is my favorite dessert in France (and most of the rest of the world, if they can get it right). And there’s a whole category my friend Leslie refers to as “beige, toothless desserts,” or food that jiggles, that I can easily live without.

This includes all of what we Americans consider puddings: rice, tapioca, bread, etc. In the jiggly category, you can pile on: crème brûlée, flan, custards and Jello. In the French (but not cheese) area add isle flottante, oeufs a la neige. And finally in the cream section, toss in crème caramel, crème Anglaise, crème Chantilly (whipped cream – but it does sound better in French, n’est pas?).  Another easy target for the list:  Asian sweets. Not only are most of them almost unbearably sweet, but they almost all fall into the toothless category.

Accidental Locavore Bread PuddingAnd as much as I love vegetables, do not think you can tempt me with cakes made from root (or other) vegetables. Carrots and zucchini should be eaten as part of the meal, not afterwards.

So, what rules? Chocolate, of course, but please don’t add anything to what is essentially a perfect product. That includes:  chipotle, cayenne or coffee, to name a few recent villains (and white chocolate, besides being beige, isn’t even really chocolate, so fuggedaboutit).

Accidental Locavore Molten CakeFruit, in season, especially when that season is summer, is sublime. I love peaches and apricots and really love them cooked!  Pies, tarts, crumbles or even grilled, it’s really hard to mess up great fruit!

Almost anything frozen. Come on, is there anything better on a warm night than ice cream! I’m still a kid at heart, so walking down the street, eating an ice cream cone always brings a smile to my face. And it is the one of the few exceptions to the beige dessert rule (cheesecake being the other). Sorbets, gelatos, even the-trendy-last-summer ice pops, are all good.

And in the winter? Back to chocolate, possibly an apple pie (especially if it’s as good as my cousin’s caramel apple) or simply waiting for that first warm night and that anticipated bite of ice cream.

 

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