Savoury Clafoutis

DSC_1736.JPGAccording to Rachel Khoo, savoury clafoutis are ze very fashionable dish in Paris. I don’t know how accurate Rachel’s trend monitoring is, but the idea made immediate sense for me.

Instead of sugar and apples, pears or cherries, use savoury ingredients such as goats’ cheese, cherry tomatoes, girolle mushrooms, Swiss chard, a pinch of rosemary, a spoonful of mustard and a drizzle of chili oil.

Or, if you want to think of in in another way, you can think of it as a quiche without the base. To compensate for the lost support offered by the shortcrust base, you add two spoon full of white flour to the mix – e voila! a savoury clafoutis. Even less work than a quiche, and just as good (but a bit heavier). Here’s how it goes:

Make 1 1/2 pint of a mix from crème fraiche, yogurt, milk, double cream. I suggest using at least 50% milk so that it doesn’t get too heavy. You can also cheat with a small amount of baking soda. Add 4 eggs and one extra yolk.

Whisk in two tablespoons white flour, a teaspoon of good mustard, salt and black pepper to taste.

Pre-heat the oven to 180C and line your favourite baking dish with baking paper. I use a 28cm dish, 3cm deep.

Find all suitable leftovers: Dice or crumble goats cheese, blue cheese, Reblochon or Gruyere cheese. Add cherry tomatoes, olives if you like, Swiss chard. Asparagus might work, roasted peppers most certainly will. Peeled cherry tomatoes will keep it light and moist. Be inventive! Add a sprinkle of rosemary, then pour the batter over it.

Shake the dish a few times to let trapped air escape, then decorate the top with some slices of tomato. I add a generous drizzle of chili-infused olive oil, but that might not be to everyone’s taste.
Bake at 180C for approximately 45 minutes. The time varies with the depth of your dish and the temperature of the batter when you start. It is ready when it has risen over the entire diameter of the baking dish, bubbles a little (mostly towards the edges), and has a lovely golden colour.

Remove from the heat, and let cool down in stages: first, leave on the counter, in the tray, for about 10 minutes. Then lift the whole thing out of the tray, and put it on a cooling rack. Another 10 minutes later, see if you can remove the paper, so that the bake doesn’t get water-logged from the trapped steam.

Serve lukewarm or cold. It’s lovely, it’s like a quiche, but it doesn’t even require making a base: A Saturday lunch winner!