The first time that I saw a clafoutis was at a little French café in Santa Fe, New Mexico. I remember thinking, "I don't know what it is, but I want it." The clafoutis that I had in that café was beautiful, sweet, and simplistic. Clafoutis are traditionally made sweet with fresh fruit. Cherries are the usual choice of fruit, but you might see any type in this classic French dish. I decided to do a savory one as I have a lot of tomatoes from my garden that I needed to use. The recipe is simple, and you can change it according to your tastes. If you can make pancake batter, then you can make a clafoutis.
You can use any mature cheese such as: gruyere, mature comté, or cheddar.
The recipe calls for cherry tomatoes, but any small tomato will do. I used small Roma tomatoes from my garden, and the results were lovely.
You can also use different herbs too. The next time I make this, I will use a thyme and chive combination. Some herbs to consider - basil, parsley, and oregano.
I also read that you can use any roasted or a variety of roasted vegetables in a clafoutis.
Have fun and experiment! If you find a new variation that you like, please let me know. I would love to hear about it.
Preparation time is 15 minutes. Cook time is 50 to 55 minutes.
Olive oil or any fat for greasing
2 to 3 cups cherry tomatoes
3 ounces goat cheese; rind removed, if necessary, and finely crumbled (or other mature cheese)
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
pinch of sugar
4 extra-large eggs, room temperature
1 1/4 cups whole milk, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
mixed salad greens, dressed with garlic vinaigrette, to serve (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 1 1/2 to 2 quart ovenproof dish. Arrange the tomatoes in a single layer in the dish, then scatter the cheese and thyme over them and set aside. Sift the flour, sugar, a 1/2 teaspoon salt, and a 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper and make a well in the center. Break the eggs into the well and use a whisk or fork to blend them together. Add half of the milk and stir, gradually incorporating the flour from the side of the bowl until blended. Whisk in the remaining milk until a smooth batter forms. Let batter rest for about 30 minutes (optional step).
Gently pour the batter over the tomatoes, shaking the dish slightly to distribute the cheese and thyme. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until the batter is puffed, golden, and set and the tomatoes are tender. Remove the clafoutis from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Alternatively, let cool completely and then serve with a dressed salad, if using. Serves 4 to 6.
My new favorite combination for the clafoutis uses 2 cups tomatoes, 3 1/2 ounces gruyere cheese - cut in small cubes (instead of the goat cheese), 2 tablespoons of thyme, and 2 tablespoons of chives. The directions and everything else are all the same.
(edited by Anna Weicht)