Follow this delicious cherry clafoutis recipe to make classic clafoutis aux cerises, an easy summer French dessert, in under 45 minutes. This fancy-sounding and fancy-looking French cherry flan is perfectly served as a dessert or a sumptuous breakfast. You need to try this simple recipe!
Have you ever made a traditional French dessert - easy cherry clafoutis (clafoutis aux cerises in French)? If not, hurry up to make it till the end of the cherry season!
- What is clafoutis?
- Fresh vs. frozen cherries
- Clafoutis: with or without pits?
- Why you should try this recipe
- Recipe variations
- How to make cherry clafoutis
- Expert Tips
- How to serve it
- Storing and freezing
- Recipe FAQ
- Love custards? Try these next!
- Need to adjust your baking pan size?
- Recipe card
You will be impressed to find out that it is one of the most forgiving desserts, easily made without any chance to fail. So, if you love quick and easy desserts, this is the one.
What is clafoutis?
Clafoutis (pronounced [kla-foo-tee]) is a rustic French custard dessert made with fresh fruit, mainly cherries, and covered with batter resembling thick crêpe batter.
Then the egg batter is baked around the fruit to get a dense and pudding-like texture. That is why clafoutis sounds like a type of eggy cake.
A timeless classic is made with cherries for an authentic flavor, but so-called flognarde can also be prepared with other seasonal fruit.
Clafoutis aux cerises (where cerise is cherry in French) is a specialty of the Limousin region of France, where it is traditionally made with local griottes or sour cherries - morello cherries.
Among the residents of French Auvergne, clafoutis is called millard or billion when it is made with black cherries. Another custard dish, cacou from Burgundy, is similar to clafoutis.
So depending on the culture and geography, you may also call this treat cherry custard pie, cherry pudding cake, cherry custard cake, cherry flan, and mistakenly clafoutis cerise.
Fresh vs. frozen cherries
Cherry clafoutis is often made with fresh cherries that bring more flavor. But frozen cherries work well instead of fresh fruits too. The only thing to be aware of is that juice might color the dish after baking.
So try to drain the thawed cherries and pat them dry before adding them to the clafoutis batter.
Clafoutis: with or without pits?
Traditional cherry clafoutis (clafoutis aux cerises) is made with unpitted cherries. Why?
- Cherry pits contain an active chemical that causes the almond extract to taste. So unpitted sweet cherries release an almond flavor into the dish while baking.
- Leaving the pits in the cherries helps preserve the consistency of the fruit.
- With biting a piece of clafoutis, you will feel the cooked cherries mixed with the smooth custard. It is far to be boring!
Attention: if you make clafoutis with unpitted cherries, warn your guests so no one eats a pit in error.
On the other hand, pitted cherries are safer for kids. The clafoutis will be a little less tasty with pitted cherries but more pleasant to eat, even for adults.
Pitted cherries will also change the color of the desert. So, it is your preference to use a cherry pitter or not.
Why you should try this recipe
- It is a great recipe to make an easy and quick dessert. With this clafoutis recipe (recette clafoutis), you have no chance to fail.
- This cherry dessert is the best option to serve at a party. It is just made for a crowd.
- Juicy cherries are the stars of the show to make the best cherry dessert. They are one of the best summer stone fruits to buy at a farmers market.
- A few basic ingredients are always available to make this easy clafoutis recipe.
- Baking the custard base before pouring the rest of the smooth batter and arranging cherries on top prevent sinking fruits to the bottom.
- The rich and velvety texture of clafoutis dessert melts in the mouth and pleases the taste buds.
- Finally, it is the original clafoutis recipe made with unpitted cherries.
Here is a quick overview of what ingredients you will need. Find the recipe card below for exact amounts and detailed instructions. I recommend making the recipe as written for the best results.
- Cherries: fresh cherries are the best to make this summer dessert. Traditionally, it is made with black cherries or Bigarreau Cherries. Living in North America, you can use tart cherries like Montmorency or sweet Bing Cherries.
- Eggs: the recipe calls for whole large-sized eggs.
- Flour: use all-purpose flour or switch it to gluten-free flour or almond flour to make the clafoutis's gluten-free version.
- Granulated sugar: it merely works for the recipe.
- Heavy cream: regular heavy cream is perfect to use.
- Milk: use whole milk for this recipe. Replace it with almond milk if preferred.
- Salt: a little pinch brings the flavors together in this dessert.
- Rum: use dark rum or replace it with kirsch, a cherry brandy, to bring a stronger cherry flavor, other fruit brandy, or vanilla extract if you serve the dish to kids.
A classic cherry clafoutis is delicious, but twisting on a classic is a new trend nowadays.
- Add a few teaspoons of matcha green tea powder or shredded toasted coconut to the clafoutis batter.
- Experiment with adding chopped chocolate to the batter to make a chocolate cherry clafoutis.
- Sprinkle the top of the dessert with toasted almonds and bake.
- Opt for an additional pistachio layer crumble and make pistachio cherry crumble clafoutis.
- Finally, get creative and make individual clafoutis by personalizing each dish with round or square ramekins.
How to make cherry clafoutis
Preheat the oven to 420 degrees F/215 degrees C.
Make clafoutis batter
To make the batter, in a large mixing bowl, place eggs, salt, vanilla sugar, granulated sugar, and flour (photo 1). Whisk wet ingredients for 5 minutes using a hand whisk (photo 2).
Add rum, whole milk, and heavy cream, and mix everything for a few minutes (photo 3). The mixture will look like a custard-like batter.
Pour batter to the bottom of a Pyrex glass baking dish (no need to grease it) up to 1 to 2 cm (photo 4) and bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.
Take the dish from the oven and place it in the freezer for 5 minutes (photo 5).
Use the rest of the batter to add a new layer on top of the custard. Arrange unpitted cherries (with shortened tails) in a single layer (photo 6). Bake in the hot oven for 10 to 15 minutes while watching.
Decorate ready clafoutis (photo 7) with extra fresh cherries dipped in a cherry jam. Sprinkle with a little bit of powdered sugar (photo 8).
- Make your clafoutis in a cast iron skillet, tart dish, springform pan, gratin dish, pie dish, or individual square ramekins.
- Replace rum with kirsch (cherry brandy), other fruit brandy, or vanilla extract if you serve the dish to kids.
- Pit cherries if you want, primarily if you serve the dish to small kids. However, consider that the color of pitted cherries would bleed into the custard.
- Rest the batter in the fridge for at least 30 to 60 minutes, better overnight. This step allows protein in the flour to chill out and relax, although this step is optional.
How to serve it
Serve the baked French dessert in a traditional way: cold, at room temperature, or warm in a dish it was baked. It does not need to be served on a serving pie plate.
- Sprinkle it with powdered (icing) or vanilla sugar to enhance the flavor.
- Garnish the ready dessert with toasted almonds or coarsely crushed sugared almonds, as per Christophe Michalak.
- Traditionally, cherry clafoutis is served on its own, but feel free to accompany the dessert with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a whipped cream dollop.
- To highlight the cherries' gourmet side, accompany cherry clafoutis with a slightly sweet sparkling wine, better with the aroma of red fruits.
Storing and freezing
Can you freeze clafoutis? It is not recommended to freeze clafoutis since it will change the texture. If you still decide to freeze the dessert, the maximum freezing time is 1 week.
Yes, you can use a blender or an electric mixer to mix all the ingredients.
You can make cherry clafoutis with frozen cherries without compromising the taste, but keep in mind their juice may add color to your creation after baking.
Make the clafoutis batter, cover it with a plastic film, and let it rest overnight. The next day, bake the dessert as directed. You can also bake cherry clafoutis one day in advance and refrigerate till serving.
Use fresh figs, pitted apricots, Italian plums, raspberries, blackberries, pears, or apples. You may avoid nectarines, peaches, and fresh plums since they are too juicy for this kind of custard.
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Clafoutis Aux Cerises (French Clafoutis)
Follow this cherry clafoutis recipe to make the easiest summer French dessert in under 45 minutes. This fancy-sounding and fancy-looking custard is perfectly served as a dessert or as a sumptuous breakfast. You need to try this simple recipe!
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 10 1x
- Category: Custards
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: French
For the batter:
- 15.8 oz. (450 g) cherries
- 4 eggs
- ⅔ cup + 10 teaspoons (110 g) flour
- ⅓ cup + 1 tablespoons (90 g) granulated sugar
- 2 cups + 5 ½ teaspoons (500 ml) heavy cream
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons (150 ml ) whole milk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla sugar
- 1 pinch of salt
- 2 tablespoons rum
For the decoration:
- powdered (icing) sugar
- cherry jam
*Don't you have the correct baking pan on hand right now? Try this simple Cake Pan Converter!
** If needed, please refer to Baking Conversion Charts.
Preheat the oven to 420 degrees F/215 degrees C. To make the batter, in a bowl, place eggs, salt, vanilla sugar, granulated sugar, and flour, and whisk for 5 minutes, using a hand whisk. Add rum, whole milk, and heavy cream, and mix everything for a few minutes. Pour the batter into the bottom of a Pyrex glass baking dish (no need to grease it) up to 1 to 2 cm and bake for 15 minutes.
Take the dish out of the oven and place it in the freezer for 5 minutes. Add a new layer of the remaining batter and arrange unpitted cherries with shortened tails. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes while watching.
Decorate ready clafoutis with fresh cherries dipped in a cherry jam. Sprinkle with powdered (icing) sugar.
- Make the clafoutis in an iron skillet, fluted pie dish, or individual square ramekins.
- Replace rum with kirsch (cherry brandy), other fruit brandy, or vanilla extract if you serve the dish to kids.
- Pit cherries if you want, primarily if you serve the dish to small kids. However, take into consideration that the color of pitted cherries would bleed into the custard.
- Rest the batter for at least 30 to 60 minutes, better overnight, in the fridge. This step allows protein in the flour to chill out and relax, although this step is optional.
- Calories: 345
- Sugar: 10.9 g
- Sodium: 74 mg
- Fat: 21.2 g
- Saturated Fat: 12.5 g
- Carbohydrates: 33.1 g
- Fiber: 0.6 g
- Protein: 5.1 g
- Cholesterol: 136 mg
Keywords: cherry clafoutis, cherry clafoutis recipe, French cherry dessert, easy clafoutis recipe, clafoutis aux cerises, clafoutis
The nutritional information has been calculated using an online recipe nutrition calculator such as Verywellfit.com and is intended for informational purposes only. These figures should be used as a general guideline and not be construed as a guarantee.
The recipe was adapted from https://www.femmeactuelle.fr/ It was originally published on July 2, 2018. The recipe has been revised to include improved content and photos. All posted pictures are mine.