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Clafoutis aux Abricots

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Clafoutis aux Abricots

Clafoutis aux Abricots
Andrew Montgomery
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total prep
Once you’ve undressed it, this is a batter pudding, but being French it’s a bit smarter than it sounds. The word clafoutis comes from clafir (to fill), because you pack the fruit into your cooking vessel, pour on a batter to fill in the gaps, then bake till puffed and glorious. It’s a French standard and with good reason: quick, easy, accessible and totally scrumptious with any stone or soft fruit--peaches, cherries, raspberries, etc.

If you’re going to be totally proper about it, and you know what sticklers the Frogs are with their national dishes, this is supposed to be cooked in a marmite (pronounced mar-meet), a thick, cast-iron pot with a lid, ideal for a dish like this for its excellently even heat distribution--though I’ve never had any problems with any kind of ovenproof dish or even a frying pan.

I don’t know if there is a connection with Marmite--I wanted to call it Clafoutis aux Abricots en Marmite as it was on the menu in Reims, but then I reckoned only Marmite lovers would make it and they’d be disappointed at the result, or confused to say the least.

Recipe courtesy of Bought, Borrowed, Stolen by Allegra McEvedy/Conran Octopus, 2011.

Ingredients

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4. Butter a baking dish or (ideally) an ovenproof cast-iron pot/pan about 25cm/10 inches across. Halve and pit the apricots and pack them closely into the bottom of the pan, curved side up, with half the sugar. Put into the oven for 5-ish minutes so that they start to soften.
  • Mix the rest of the sugar with the flour, almonds and salt. Beat the eggs with the vanilla, booze and milk, then pour gradually into the dry ingredients, stirring all the time, to make a thin batter. When the apricots come out of the oven, give them a little shuffle and pour in the batter.
  • Cook for about 25–30 minutes, scattering on the flaked almonds halfway through, until the batter is puffed up, golden and caramelizing a bit around the edge.
  • Tuck in straight away, with ice cream, cream or crème fraîche.

  • *You must taste your fruit--for the end result it doesn’t matter if the apricots are under rip, but if they are you’ll need more sugar than this.