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In this season of dishes that scream belt-loosening decadence, I'd like to take a moment to appreciate something a little more refined; something that won't ruin your diet, but is so delicious you'd never guess it.
The Clafoutis. ( That's Klah-foo-tee ).
This dessert has been my favorite ever since I was a little girl. I remember my mom making it for formal dinner parties, casual breakfasts, and everything in between, and it always got rave reviews. That's just how the clafoutis is -- a giver. Perhaps one of the easiest desserts you can make without using some sort of store-bought shortcut, clafoutis takes less than 5 minutes to throw together, and can be an impressive main dish for your ladies' brunch or end to a fabulous meal.
So what exactly is it? A classic French dish, clafoutis is almost like a baked French flan, but more firm. The original version has cherries, pits included. The pits give the clafoutis a rich, almond flavor, but I've never really been a fan of hidden tooth breakers in my food, so even when I make a cherry clafoutis, I pit the cherries and add a little almond liqueur to keep the flavor. This particular version is blueberries, as this time of year they are easier to find than cherries ( and significantly less expensive ), but just as delicious!
In case you aren't already sold on this fabulous little dessert, it has a secret that just might sway you: at 6 slices ( servings ) per pie or tart dish, it only has 110 calories per slice. Seriously. No cheating, no weird fake sugars, it's just naturally a light dessert, though you'd never guess it from the delightful flavor and texture. This recipe could also easily serve 8, but for 110 calories, I'd rather have the larger slice. One last perk -- it freezes ( whole or sliced, but must already be baked ) fabulously.
- 1 1/4 cup lowfat milk
- 2/3 cup sugar divided
- 3 eggs
- 1 tablespoon almond extract or Amaretto Liqueur
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 cup blueberries tossed in 2 tablespoons of flour
- Preheat oven to 350° and grease a pie or tart pan.
- Blend all milk, 1/3 cup of the sugar, eggs, almond, salt, and flour until frothy. You could use a mixer, but our Vitamix always is sitting on the counter, and I love how quick and easy it is to throw everything into the blender to make this recipe, so I always use it when I can.
- Pour into greased pan.
- Sprinkle the blueberries on top of the batter ( they will probably sink to the bottom -- it's cool, don't stress about it), and sprinkle 1/3 cup sugar on top of everything.
- Bake for 35 to 40 minutes.
- The clafoutis will be puffed and potentially a little jiggly in the middle when it comes out of the oven, but will set and fall as it cools. ( It's supposed to! )
Serve with some fresh berries, a dollop of freshly whipped cream or my fabulous cashew whipped cream on top!