Friday, July 31, 2009

Nectarine Clafouti - Delicious

I love summer, especially the delicious fruit. There is just something so delicious about eating fruits in season, and not the nasty ones you get in the middle of winter. So, I'm fully enjoying the bounty of our supermarkets - especially nectarines. I love dicing one and sprinkling it over greek yogurt or vanilla ice cream, and now thanks to Barefoot Contessa, I love them baked in a custard!

This is the easiest dessert that I've made in a while. It's adapted from Ina's Barefoot in Paris recipe for a pear clafouti. I had about four nectarines that would spoil before I could eat them, so I wanted to use them. It's basically a custard/pancake batter poured over the fruit and then baked. The sweet/tart nectarines and the creamy custard with a little cinnamon are delicious. (Belle, I saw the plum tart tatin and can't wait to try it - but I was too greedy and ate all the plums on hand first :)

Pear Clafouti (adapted with nectarines)

1 TBS unsalted butter, soft
1/3 cup plus 1 TBS granulated sugar
3 extra large eggs at room temperature
6 TBS all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp grated lemon zest (I omitted this because these nectarines were pretty tart)
1/4 tsp kosher salt (I used regular table salt)
2 TBS pear brandy (Poire William) (I also omitted this since my nectarines are pretty juicy)
(ADDITION - 2 tsp cinnamon)
4 very ripe nectarines (if using pears - 2-3 firm but ripe Bartlett pears)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 10" round baking dish and sprinkle bottom with granulated sugar (I used a 9" square pan with a delicious result - if slightly less pretty :)

2. Beat eggs and 1/3 cup sugar in electric mixer on medium high speed until light and fluffy - 3 minutes (mine never got "fluffy" but I beat for 3 minutes and the recipe worked). On low speed, mix in flour, cream, vanilla, cinnamon (if using), lemon zest (if using), salt and pear brandy (if using). Set aside for 10 minutes.

3. (If using pears, peel quarter and slice them). I kept the peel on the nectarines because I like the color, and simply sliced them in little quadrants (it's very hard to cut wedges of nectarine). Arrange the slices in a single layer (neatly if possible) on the bottom of the baking dish. Pour the batter over the fruit and bake until the top is golden brown and the custard is firm - about 35-40 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature. It's very good with vanilla ice cream, and I bet it would be delicious the next day as well with a cup of coffee.
4. A note on seasoning. I like cinnamon, so if you aren't a big fan, maybe reduce it to 1 tsp. I bet this recipe would work really well with plums, or the more traditional cherries. You could also try adding some grated fresh ginger, orange zest, nutmeg - whatever.

1 comment:

  1. I don't bake but you are making me what to start. I would love a pice of this! Mmmmmm...summer fruit.