Clafoutis . . . Clah-FOO-tee . . .
As much as I love the way this French dessert sounds (in fact, so much that if I say it one more time, I will be signing up for a course of French!), it’s the Russian translation for it that makes me want to run into the kitchen and start cracking eggs.
It’s запеченый заварной малиновый крем that would equal something like baked raspberry custard in English.
Who doesn’t like custard?! The rich and creamy mixture of eggs, milk or cream, and sugar that forms the base for an array of culinary preparations. Crème pâtissière, crème brûlée, crème anglaise, crème caramel . . .
Is your mouth watering yet? French is the gustatory language of the world, I swear!
What else comes to mind when you think of custard? Flans. Pots de crème. Puddings.
Even quiches and key lime pie filling!
And although all of those desserts call for just a handful of simple ingredients, some involve a technique called tempering when raw eggs are added into a hot liquid. Tempering means to add the hot liquid to the eggs in small amounts to raise their temperature without causing them to overcook or curdle.
Not my custardy cake, I assure you! It takes very little effort to make it. All you do is just combine the ingredients together by hand or in a food processor, pour over the raspberries, and bake. As a matter of fact, cherries are the traditional choice, but any seasonal fruits are good options.
A special note should be taken of eggs—the main ingredient of any custard–as their quality will greatly affect your end result. Get the freshest eggs possible, preferably from a local farm; and for a richer, creamier texture, take a chance on duck eggs as their emulsifying properties by far exceed those of a chicken egg due to the higher yolk to white ratio.
Duck egg yolks range from a bright yellow to a golden orange color and can elevate your custards and custard-inspired desserts to new heights of visual appeal.
Recipe for Olga’s Original Black Raspberry Clafoutis (GF) *
1. 2 cups (about 220g) firm black or red raspberries, divided
2. 1/3 cup (35 g) arrowroot starch/flour
3. 2 tablespoons (10 g) amaranth flour
4. 1/4 teaspoon fine kosher sea salt
5. 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (70 g) baker’s sugar
6. 2 duck eggs, at room temperature
7. 1 duck egg yolk, at room temperature
8. 1 cup (250 ml) whole milk, at room temperature
9. 1 vanilla bean, split and seeded
10. 30 g coconut oil, melted and cooled
1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Generously brush bottom and sides of a shallow 9-inch pie plate with melted coconut oil and fill with 1 cup raspberries; set aside.
3. Sift starch, flour, and salt into a medium bowl; add sugar.
4. Gradually whisk in eggs, egg yolk, and milk; add vanilla seeds and coconut oil and whisk until batter is smooth.
5. Using a fine sieve, strain batter over raspberries; scatter leftover berries on top and bake until puffed and browned around the edge, about 35-40 minutes.
6. Let cool until warm; it will sink slightly.
7. Slice and serve with a light dusting of confectioner’s sugar. Try with yogurt, whipped cream or ice cream.
* developed at an altitude of 4500 feet above sea level