Like the Dutch baby I posted recently, clafoutis is another sweet (but not overly so) and easy dish that makes a great dessert but can also do double-duty as breakfast.
Clafoutis is essentially a baked custard — rich yet not heavy, silky, and eggy — that’s studded with fruit. Cherry clafoutis is the classic version, but really you can use any seasonal fruits that you like (a pear version is my favorite during fall and winter).
In a traditional cherry clafoutis the cherries are left whole, pits and all. The rationale is that this technique better seals in the cherries’ sweet juices and prevents them from bleeding into the custard; but I wonder if the true origin might actually have been a clever French housewife of long ago who didn’t feel like wasting time hunched over the sink with a cherry-pitter. I personally prefer to leave the pits in, for reasons of both flavor and laziness, but pit your cherries if you prefer.
This particular clafoutis was intended to be all cherry, but then we (and by ‘we’ I mean ‘I’) snacked on so many of the spectacularly juicy and sweet NJ cherries that we brought home from the farmers’ market that a peach had to be recruited in order to bulk up the fruit quotient. Raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, red currants, and any variety of stone fruit would also be delicious to include.
Another great thing about clafoutis as breakfast, or as part of a breakfast or brunch spread, is that it’s largely make-ahead. Blend the batter and store it in the fridge overnight, and all that’s left to do in the morning is to butter and sugar the baking dish, arrange your fruit, pour the batter over top and bake.
Gluten-free Cherry Peach Clafoutis
Serves 6 to 8 as dessert, 4 as breakfast
3 large eggs
1-1/4 cups milk of your choice (dairy or plant-based, such as almond or coconut)
1/4 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour blend (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
1/4 cup blanched almond flour
1/3 cup granulated sugar plus 1 tablespoon, divided
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon softened butter
2 cups cherries (pitted if you prefer)
1 ripe peach or nectarine, pitted and sliced into eighths
Combine eggs, milk, flours, sugar, vanilla and almond extracts, and salt in a blender. Blend on high until smooth, about 30 seconds. Set aside to rest for 10 minutes or chill overnight in the fridge. If chilled, allow batter to sit at room temp for 10 minutes before proceeding with the recipe.
Preheat oven to 350F.
Butter a 9-inch pie plate or baking dish and sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. Arrange fruit in dish and pour batter over the top. Bake until custard is set in the center and golden on top, 45 to 50 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.