Plum and Hazelnut Clafoutis
Clafoutis is a classic French dessert, a combination of dense custard and fruit, most often cherries. Most people outside of France know the clafoutis thanks to the lovely Julia Child.
But there’s no reason to be bound by tradition.
A clafoutis can certainly be made with fruit other than cherries, and that’s why I think it’s an excellent late summer and early fall recipe. It’s the perfect way to use up a little fruit when you’re overloaded with a little too much and you don’t know what to do with it.
Last summer I did a version with apricots and cardamom, and after a recent trip to the countryside where I was told I was more than welcome to pick as much fruit as I wanted, plums were overflowing in my kitchen, so they were thrown in.
For simplicity, clafoutis wins as well. You basically just layer a baking dish with fresh fruit and then pour the batter on top. To serve it, you can carefully cut out equally-sized pieces, but of course, it’s more fun to just scoop pieces out with a big spoon. It’s a rustic dessert, and what’s better on a late summer evening?
Traditionally made with flour, this recipe uses ground hazelnuts, which gives it just a hint of hazelnut flavor while still keeping the same consistency as a classic clafoutis.
If you can’t get your hands on yellow plums, this recipe can definitely be made with all purple plums. You’ll notice in the photo that mine weren’t completely ripe, but since the clafoutis is baked for a long time, they soften up and get quite sweet, so even if you have some fruit that you’re not sure isn’t all the way ripe, throw it in anyway.
I bake mine in a glass dish (because that’s all the Foodie Underground kitchen has!) but when you see them baked in France, they’re in those gorgeous ceramic casserole dishes.
If you have one, I am officially jealous.
Plum and Hazelnut Clafoutis
About 8 purple plums
About 10 yellow plums
2 large organic eggs
1 cup (240 milliliters) milk or non-dairy milk
3 tablespoons honey
1/2 cup (1 1/2 ounces, 45 grams) hazelnut meal, or finely ground hazelnuts + extra for dusting baking dish
Dash of sea salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
Rinse the plums, and halve and pit them.
Grease a 9″ baking dish or smaller and sprinkle with hazelnut meal or ground hazelnuts. Place the plums in the baking dish.
In a bowl, whisk the eggs until frothy. Add in the milk and honey and whisk until well blended. Add in the hazelnut meal and sea salt and mix together until well blended.
Pour over the plums and bake for about 45 to 50 minutes, until the clafoutis is golden brown around the edges and has set all the way through (it shouldn’t jiggle when you move the dish).
Remove from the oven and serve warm. Or let cool. You can even put it in the refrigerator and eat it the next day. Whatever works for you.