Clafouti is like a sweet crustless quiche or custard baked with chunks of fruit. Most of the time, you see cherry clafouti, but the fruit can be changed with the seasons. In this Fall/Winter recipe, we use apples flavored with cinnamon, nutmeg, brown butter, and apple brandy.The apples are sauteed in butter and then flavored with spices and brandy and poured into the bottom of a pie pan. A simple pancake batter is poured on top, and then it is baked. You can serve it plain or dress it up with a dusting of powdered sugar and a scoop of ice cream on the side. It makes the perfect Holiday or dinner party dessert because it is not only delicious but also incredibly easy. - Waverly —Waverly
Test Kitchen Notes
When this came out of the oven browned on top, I was surprised Waverly had called it a flan -- but once we let it cool and dug into it, it definitely had a custardy flan-like consistency. I really liked the kick the apple brandy added and overall it was delicious. I might make this for Thanksgiving. - Alain —The Editors
(about 1 1/4 lbs) crisp apples like Honey Crisp, peeled, cored, and sliced lengthwise 1/4-inch thick
SAUTE THE APPLES: Preheat oven to 350. Butter a 8-cup baking dish or pie plate. Melt butter in a large skillet over MEDIUM heat. Shake the pan every once in awhile until the butter is melted, browned, and smelling nutty. Be careful not to burn it. Add the sliced apples and saute until the apples are soft and lightly browned. Note: the apples will release liquid first, like an onion. When the liquid cooks off, the apples will brown. Remove from heat. Add Calvados, sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt and stir to combine. Set aside for 30 minutes.
MAKE THE BATTER: Place milk, sugar, eggs, vanilla, salt, and flour in a blender. Cover and blend at high speed until combined, 30 seconds to 1 minute.
PUT IT IN A PAN AND BAKE: Pour apples and the liquid they sit in into the buttered baking dish. Pour the batter over the apples. Place in the center of the oven and bake until clafouti is puffed and browned and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Depending on your pan, this will take 1 -11/4 hour.
SERVE: Dust with a little powdered sugar. Serve apple clafouti warm or at room temperature with cinnamon ice cream on the side.
Waverly used to be a lawyer and is now a mother 24/7. She has made a commitment to cooking for her family and absolutely loves it even when her family does not. She is teaching them, one meal at a time, to enjoy wholesome homemade food. She abhors processed food but recognizes its insidious nature and accepts the fact that her children will occasionally get some Skittles, Doritos, or the like. Her philosophy and hope is that if she teaches them well at home, they will prefer wholesome healthy foods when they go out into the world without her.