05 August 2010

Currant Clafouti

I'm not sure how many of you have read the book Julie and Julia, but to summarize, it's about a woman (named Julie) who cooks everything in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking cookbook.  But ever since reading that book (which was WAY better than the movie BTW), I've had this craving to make clafouti, which Julie raves about in the book.  Now, a clafouti is basically some fruit in a baking dish with a batter poured over it.  As it cooks the batter turns to this silky, flan-y, custard-y texture that goes so well with any fruit, really.  But, I guess to officially be called a Clafouti, it is made with whole cherries (pits included).  If it's made with other fruit it's called a flaugnarde.  But, since I hadn't heard that term until I was reading about clafoutis on Wikipedia, I'm still going to call this clafouti.
I decided to do a little twist on this and use red currants in stead of cherries.  There are TONS of currants out right now at the market in town and they are dirt cheap!  I haven't done any cooking with currants before, and I figured there was no time like the present to try something new that is in season (and cheap if I screw it up).  I needed to make a few adjustments to the original recipe which called for 3 cups of cherries.  I had planned to just substitute currants for the cherries, but after I started spreading the currants on, I realized using 3 cups was way too much.  I only used about 2-2 1/2 cups, but I feel even that was too much.  The currants have a lot more water in them than cherries, and that made this dish a little soggy.  I think it would be better off with 1 1/2 cups; I made that change in the recipe below. 

I think this dish would be amazing with other fruit.  I've made it before with cherries, plums, and pears.  Adding a little cinnamon is great with the plums and pears.  You could probably use whatever is in season and it would work out well.

Currant Clafouti
Adapted from Julia Child's Clafouti
Serves 6-8

1 1/4 c milk
2/3 c sugar, divided
3 eggs
1 T vanilla
1/8 t salt
1/2 cup flour
1-1 1/2 cups red currants

powdered sugar (for dusting)

Preheat oven to 350F

In a blender, blend together the milk, 1/3 c sugar, vanilla, salt and flour.  Pour a 1/4" layer of batter into a buttered 7 or 8 cup lightly buttered oven-safe baking dish.  Place in the oven until a film of batter sets in the pan, about 10 minutes.

Remove from the heat and spread the currants over the batter.  Sprinkle on the remaining 1/3c of sugar and pour over the rest of the batter.

Bake at 350F for 45 minutes to an hour.  The clafouti is done when puffed and brown and a knife stuck in the center comes out clean.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve warm.

Click here for a printable recipe

1 comment:

  1. I swear, your food photos are more art than anything else...but they make me hungry, all the same.