Cherry clafoutis

My husband was cycling home from work last week when a woman opened her car door without looking. A fraction of a second later he was flying through the air, landing with an awkward thud on the road. After a breathless phone call from him, I picked the two children up from the dining table, where they were eating tea, thrust them in their car seats and drove to meet him at the kerb. I got there just seconds after the ambulance arrived, and had a few moments to see him before it whisked him away with a suspected broken shin.
I drove home with a shoeless two-year-old (there hadn’t been time to get him properly dressed) and a subdued four year old, finished giving them their tea, asked a neighbour to babysit, and drove to A&E for a quick whisk through the system.
After an hour we were told it wasn’t broken, just badly bruised and he needed to keep it up with an ice pack (preferably frozen peas). We drove home (via the fish and chip shop) and spent the evening counting our blessings, thinking of what might have been (it’s a busy road but fortunately he wasn’t hit by any oncoming cars) and marvelling at the restorative powers of fish, chips and slightly flat cava.
But we didn’t have any frozen peas. Instead I had some 480g packs of frozen dark sweet cherries from Sainsburys, which are on offer at the moment, three for a fiver. A very good deal, I’m sure you’ll agree. And it meant I didn’t flinch when I realised that this was all I had to put on Mr McDonald’s leg. What it does mean is that I have a lot of defrosting cherries to use up. So I’ve been making cherry clafoutis. Cherries are surprisingly difficult to cook with, if you have a glut. Cherry pie has too much juice for my liking, but a clafoutis is simple, tasty, and this was a nice injection of summer on a cold wintry weekend. I recommend it, I just hope your defrosting process isn’t as traumatic as ours.
This recipe is a from Niki Segnit’s fantastic The Flavour Thesaurus. If I was brave I’d introduce some ground almonds in there instead of plain flour, but I’d had too many unpleasant surprises that weekend and  couldn’t risk it.
Cherry clafoutis
Serves: 8 slices
Start to finish: 10 minutes plus 30 mins in the oven
500g pitted cherries
Vanilla pod and seeds
250ml milk
2 eggs and one additional egg yolk
125g caster sugar
75g melted butter
50g plain flour
Put the cherries in a buttered 23cm oven proof dish (I used a silicone cake mould). Split a vanilla pod and scrape the seeds out into a saucepan containing the milk. Bring it to boil and then set aside to cool. Whisk two eggs, one egg yolk and the sugar until well combined. Add melted butter and whisk some more. Sift in the flour and whisk until  smooth. Remove the vanilla pod and whisk the milk into the batter. Pour this over the cherries and bake for 30 minutes until set and golden on top.


  1. Great to hear your husband is ok, such a horrible shock! Will have to check out Sainsburys frozen fruit as all I have in the freezer is frozen peas and herbs.

    • It’s really worth having a good scout round. My kids love the corn on the cobs too. And if you go to waitrose you get soffritto (chopped carrot, celery, onion) as a base for soups and bolognaise – makes your life loads easier!

  2. I’d always meant to try clafoutis with frozen cherries but never got round to it. Most clafoutis recipes I’ve seen require stone in cherries which would put my husband right off. Was it ok with the stoned cherries?

    • It was good. I think the cherry stones are meant to give it an almondy taste, which the ground almonds could also do, but my kids are too young to navigate cherry stones. And by using frozen cherries rather than fresh cherries I’ve already completely bastardised the recipe…Give it a go!

  3. Ooh I have some almond extract in the cupboard… Maybe I’ll adapt the recipe further…

  4. Looks delicious

    • One of our favourites!


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