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Gluten-Free Cherry Clafoutis

I love cherries; they are the perfect fruit for me.  The perfect balance of sweet and tart.  The plump and juicy flesh of this stone fruit takes me back to a much simpler time, when I could spend the hot summer afternoon in my parents’ backyard with a bowl of fresh cherries and eat them until my fingers and mouth turned a deep crimson red, having not a care in the world.

After spending a recent afternoon at my local co-op, I brought home a bounty of fresh cherries.  I turned off the television, filled the baby pool with cool water from the hose (and taught my boys how to drink water from it), and we sat in the pool and ate cherries.  A lot of cherries.  We were a bit silly and had a pit spitting contest (they could not get over “mom” doing such a “boy” thing.  Little do they know, their mom was once a better tree climber than all the boys on her block when she was growing up).  😉  The long, hot, lazy days of summer, how I have missed them so.  Eating cherries until our fingers and mouths turned that familiar shade of red.  To share this memory with my babes is beautiful and priceless.

The following recipe is linked to this month’s ‘Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free’ blog carnival which was started by Naomi Devlin of Straight Into Bed Cakefree and Dried.  This month’s host is Sheryl of Breaking Bread and her theme is “Ohh La La Bastille Day.”

I decided to try something new with the remaining cherries.  A cherry clafoutis (pronounced kla-foo-TEE).  This would be a brand new experience for me, as I had never heard of this French breakfast/dessert pudding-like cake from the Limousin region of France.  Traditionally, this dessert is baked with the whole cherry, including the pits, as they are thought to release an almond-like flavor when baked.  I went ahead and removed the pits with my new cherry pitter that actually works without causing bodily harm in the process (really, one could poke their eye out with a flying cherry pit!). 😀

I adapted the following recipe to be gluten-free and dairy-free from a recipe I discovered on What’s Cooking America.

Cherry Clafoutis

1 Tbs. Butter (I used Earth Balance buttery spread which is dairy-free)

4 Eggs

1 cup Granulated Sugar, divided (I used 3/4 cup total of SUSTA natural sweetener)

1/2 tsp. Pure Vanilla Extract

1/4 tsp. Almond Extract

1 Tbs. Brandy (I used the author’s recommendation of Amaretto Liqueur)

1 cup All-Purpose Flour  (I used Better Batter Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour)

1 1/2 cups milk (I used So Delicious Original Coconut Milk)

1 pound Pitted Cherries

Powdered Sugar (Confectioner’s Sugar), for dusting

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Butter an ovenproof dish, deep dish pie plate, or cast-iron pan (at least 1 1/2-inches deep). (I used a cast iron pan, but next time I will use a deep dish pie plate because I had some trouble removing the clafoutis in one piece).
  • Place eggs, 3/4 cup sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, brandy, flour, and milk in a blender: puree till smooth.
  • In a mixing bowl, toss the cherries with the remaining 1/4 cup sugar. (I omitted this step)
  • Place three-quarters of the cherries and their juices in the bottom of the baking dish. Pour the batter over the fruit; arrange the remaining cherries on top.
  • Bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until the top is brown and a knife inserted into the middle of the dish comes out clean.
  • Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes before serving (cake will sink slightly).
  • Sprinkle with powdered sugar over the top with a sieve.
  • Serve the Cherry Clafouti warm.

Are there any foods that trigger strong summer memories from your childhood?

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  1. Hi there, I've been following your blog for almost a month know and I LOVE some of the recipes you've put forth. I was diagnosed with a gluten allergy when I was in college, however, the test that were given to me were inconclusive and when I moved away from my college, every symptom I had completely disappeared, so I have not felt it necessary to stick strictly to a gluten free diet. With that being said, I love finding alternatives to some of the more standard cooking/baking process.

    So I have a question, did you enjoy this recipe, I mean you must have since you posted it, but with the substitutions you made, was it worth it? I am way too lazy to pit the cherries, so how would you imagine the pits would alter the experience of eating this dish? Thanks.

  2. Oh, Heidi, this looks awesome!! I love cherries!! I hate that cherry season is so short! 🙁

    Green beans trigger summer memories for me. My dad had a huge garden when we lived in NJ and we had so many green beans that they were coming out of our ears! LOL!

    I was a bit of a tree climber myself! 😉

  3. This looks so yummy! I had no idea what it was (but I definitely wanted to eat it! =0) Thanks for the explanation and the recipe. =0)

  4. Gorgeous, Heidi! Great memories shared and I love that you are making new ones with your boys–the best! Many memories in our house involved watermelon. My sister and I swear we could eat watermelon 24/7. I don't indulge very often these days, but slicing into a big cold watermelon has to be one of the greatest summer joys. Hey, since this is a French dish, be sure to submit it to Go Ahead Honey this month (Sheryl at Breaking Bread; entries due by tomorrow).

    xo from another former tomboy,


    • Thank you Shirley!!

      Watermelons were the mainstay of my husband's childhood memories too. He loves to recall how his dad would have to pull all the watermelon runners from the grass once they began to grow!

      Thanks for the heads up on Go Ahead Honey, I always seem to miss the deadlines for the blog carnivals (I need to post a schedule in my kitchen!).

      Former Tomboys Unite! 😉

  5. I grew up on a ravine property, so we pitched all our corn cobs and watermelon rinds over the fence.

    It's my birthday this week, I think I will try this recipe with peaches.

    • Happy Birthday week Kristin!! Can't wait to hear about all your activities. 😀

      Throwing cobs and rinds actually sound like a lot of fun, would make for some interesting target practice!

      There is a farm near us that has a giant cannonball-shooter-thing, and they launch pumpkins out of them in October, so cool!

  6. I love this post – what a great moment with your babes 🙂 xo

  7. What a fabulous story. I love making memories like that with my son. We made juice together this morning.

    I also have a childhood memory of cherries. Only mine is of our neighbors bringing a giant bowl of them over when we first moved into our new house. They had a huge tree that I would go pick cherries from for the next five years while we lived there. My mom and the woman who lived there are still really good friends, even though they live thousands of miles apart.

    I see lots of cherries around at the store. I think I am going to have to get a bunch to try all of these great recipes I am finding.

    Tia 🙂

  8. Since I have two "boys" also — altho' now full-grown — I can easily picture their shock at their mom doing such things as cherry-pit-spitting contests! Is that so different from, say, watermelon seeds? (That's one I especially remember doing that with my boys.) I believe it's important for boys to realize that moms — and by extension, all "girls" — are people, too 😉

  9. Cherry Clafoutis is better personally without the pits, not very proper at the dessert table to spit out pits.

    Love your story about your boys, isn't it great to share these simple things with out future generation. Awesome memories!

  10. I love cherries! Rarely do we have enough so that they'll actually make it to a clafoutis or something, mostly they're just eaten, like you said! This does sound great.

  11. Cherries are my all time favorite fruit in the summer. I make sure I eat them everyday in every form I can think of until the are unavailable again. Great memories you have shared. I hope you and your boys make plenty more in the future! The clafoutis looks unbeleivable.

  12. Look at you!! I am catching up with my emails after our company being here. I have been wanting to make a clafoutis too! I had heard though that it might act funny since we're at a higher elevation, so I am glad you tried it out first!!! I bought some cherries yesterday so I might have to try this out. Yum!!!

  13. Nancy Olson says

    Nice one Heidi.This one looks good.I can’t wait to have it in my table.

    Thanks for sharing.