THE FLUFFY CUSTARD, SOUR CHERRIES AND SPRINKLE OF POWDERED SUGAR; CLAFOUTIS AUX CERISES, FRANCE, Normandy, France
Whole Sour Cherries – 1.5 pounds (whole sour cherries with pits)
Milk – 1 cup
Heavy Cream – 1 cup
Hazelnuts – 1/2 cup
Sugar – 1/2 cup
Eggs – 4 large eggs
Vanilla – 2 teaspoons
Powdered Sugar – 1 tablespoon
Butter – 1 tablespoon
Clafoutis – France’s confectionery inventions and traditions extend across centuries delivering a poetry of colors, textures, flavors and shapes. Originating in the Limousin Region of France, Clafoutis (Clafoutis aux Cerises) represents a traditional custard dessert prepared with unpitted sour cherries. The balance of light custard and flavorful sour cherries creates a delicate and sophisticated dessert. The native to Europe, the Sour Cherry (Prunus Cerasus) delivers unique dark red color, distinct tart flavor and nutritious qualities. There are plentiful Clafoutis recipes utilizing thicker custard and different kinds of fruit. The presented recipe utilizes a mixture of heavy cream, milk and grounded hazelnuts resulting in a light texture. The usage of whole sour cherries prevents the cherry juice from being absorbed into the custard and retaining the custard’s yellow coloring. Clafoutis aux Cerises represents the classic flavors and aromas of French country baking.
Note: Montmorency cherries and Balaton cherries are two primary sour cherries cultivated in the USA, mainly in Michigan State. The featured Clafoutis aux Cerises recipe uses Balaton sour cherries defined by dark red color, firm texture and perfectly balanced tart and sweet flavor. Újfehértó Fürtös represents a cherry tree originating from Újfehértó village in Hungary and is cultivated in the US under the trademark name of Balaton cherries. King Orchards, situated in Central Lake Michigan, grows wonderful varieties of fruits, including our favorite Balaton sour cherries that are hand-picked and available fresh once a year during the summer cherry season.
Step 1 – Butter two fireproof medium size baking dishes and place cherries equally into each baking dish.
Step 2 – Crack whole hazelnuts, place them into boiling water and blanch for five minutes. Transfer hazelnuts to iced water and peel the skin. Finely grind the peeled hazelnuts.
Step 3 – Whisk together milk, heavy cream, grinded hazelnuts, eggs and vanilla into smooth texture. Pour the mixture over the cherries. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for half an hour.
Step 4 – The lightly golden color reflects baked Clafoutis. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve warm.
Step 5 – Enjoy the simplicity of French country style baking!