Sunday, 29 July 2012

Cherry clafoutis

I've been trying to write one of my threatened 'lifestyle' posts for the last two weeks, but got to a stage where I was even boring myself with it, so I've given up and gone back to edible stuff. 

Now I'm not going to rabbit on about this one, because you just need to get on and make it, yeah?  Don't sit there thinking, 'Ooh, yes, that'll be something nice for when X and Y come round for dinner'.  Because X and Y probably won't come round for dinner; X will get flu, or Y will pretend that the babysitter's cancelled, as they really just want to stay in and watch Britain's Got Talent and get a curry, which is completely reasonable seeing as the last time they came round you burnt the mashed potato.  Then you'll forget about making this and suddenly it'll be November and cherries will cost £27 per kilo, and 'OH FUCK, I DIDN'T MAKE THAT CLAFOUTIS'.

The above advice comes from experience (with the exception of burning mashed potato, who the hell burns mashed potato?), because I bought a delicious slice of this stuff last Summer from a deli on the Chatsworth road, then a whole year passed before I made its acquaintance again.  It's stodgy, and cakey, but not too much because there's some healthy, healthy fruit in there to cut the sweetness.  No, on the whole it's not very good for you, but I've mainly eaten cream today and I'm still alive, so I'm sure you'll get over it. 

So quit fannying around and hop to it, OK?

Cherry clafoutis
This will serve about six, I made it a third of the size for Ben and I

500-600g cherries (depending on how fruity you want it), stoned
20g butter plus some for greasing
75g caster sugar
225g plain flour
3 eggs, separated
350ml milk
Couple of tbsp of brandy (optional)

Firstly butter a good sized gratin/casserole type dish (the sort of thing you'd use for a large quiche).  Then put in the cherries and dab them with a bit of brandy (if using) and sprinkle on 25g of the sugar.  Mix together the flour and remaining sugar and make a well in the centre, then add your egg yolks and a bit of the milk.  Beat together and gradually add the rest of the milk, until you've got a smooth batter. Whisk your egg whites until they form soft peaks and then fold them into the batter.  Pour the batter over the cherries, so they're just slightly poking out at the top. Dot the rest of the butter on top. Bake at gas mark 5 for about 30-45 mins, checking after the first 30.  You want the batter to be set,but not solid, and golden on top.  If the top is starting to brown but the middle is still runny, cover with tin foil until done. Sprinkle with icing sugar and serve with creme fraiche or ice cream.

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