Wild Blackberry Clafoutis

berrySooo, summer is back? Today was sunny and bright, so I decided to go foraging for more blackberries for this recipe.  My secret spot had some lovely dark berries ready to come home with me. There are also lots that will be ready in a few days, so I’ll be back again.  Sometimes it is tempting to pick berries that are nearly ready, but the darker the berry, the sweeter the juice. If you pick them too early, they will be tart and maybe sour.

So anyway, I decided to make a wild blackberry clafoutis. I believe this is a French dessert and, is meant to be light, fluffy, and perfect with summer time fruit. If you have a Julia Childs cookbook somewhere, I was told she made this recipe as well, so let’s make her proud! In my haste, I almost forgot to take a photo, but you get the idea. This is what you will need:

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  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 cups blackberries
  • butter to grease the pan

First, preheat your oven to 350 C / 180 F.  Thoroughly grease your baking dish with butter. I used a small ceramic casserole dish and it was large enough, but I may try to bake this in my ceramic pie dish next time. Next, combine the milk, eggs, and vanilla in a bowl. Either whisk this well, or use a hand mixer to get it nice and smooth.  Then add HALF of the sugar and all the flour, salt, lemon zest, and cinnamon by whisking or using a high speed mixer. You really want to get this batter as smooth as possible for the best results.

batter1With your oven hot and ready to go, pour about 1/4 of the batter into the baking dish. Place this in the oven for about 5-10 minutes.

batter2

You want it to begin to cook, but I’m still figuring out exactly how long this initial bake should be. Basically, you want a bit of a firm base to put the berries on. For me, 10 minutes was sufficient.  There will still be liquid batter, but you should see the batter begin to fluff up the sides. Use your pot holders to take this out of the oven.  Then add the berries in a single layer amongst the batter and sprinkle the rest of the sugar over the berries.

batter3

Next, cover the berries with the remaining batter. Keep in mind, the clafoutis will rise up and fluff out during the baking process.

batter4

Place back into the oven for 45-60 minutes, depending on how your oven distributes heat. You’ll know when its ready if a knife comes out clean and it starts to brown. I baked mine for 45 minutes.  I then turned off the heat, and left it in the warm oven for another 10 minutes.

oven

When you take it out of the oven, it should be very fluffy, a bit browned, and slightly wiggly. It will rise, but may sink a bit once it cools, or at least that’s what mine did.

doneSo that’s my wild blackberry clafoutis. Once served, I sprinkled a bit of powdered sugar on top. It was the perfect amount of sweetness and the vanilla really played on the ripeness of the blackberries. It is a great summer treat and you can use so many different fruit combinations in this. Peaches are starting to go on sale, so may try that next time, or perhaps some blueberries or apricots.  The end result with whatever fruit you decide on, will be light and satisfying, and a great ending to a day of grilling. My favorite thing about this dessert is that I used all natural fruit I found growing wild, and the flavor just tastes of warmth and sunshine. I would love to plant some blackberry bushes of my own next year, but until then, I will continue to harvest what Bristol gives me. Toorah babber! Thanks for reading and Happy Eating!

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