Apricot and Green Cardamom Clafoutis
One of my favorite summer desserts is fruit cobbler, but over time I have found cobbler to be too heavy and usually too sweet. Clafoutis makes a really nice, light alternative, and allows for more flavor experimentation. I think the tart apricots blend well with the lightly floral cardamom in this version, and it is especially delicious with fresh whipped cream.
For the filling:
- 60 ml (1/4 cup) light brown sugar or date sugar
- 30 ml (2 tablespoons) dry rose or white wine
- 6-8 cardamom pods, gently cracked but not completely open
- 15 ml (1 tablespoon) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 454 grams (1 pound) very ripe apricots, halved and pitted
For the topping:
- 2 eggs, yolks and whites separated and kept chilled
- 45 ml (3 tablespoons) light brown sugar
- Finely grated zest of one lemon
- 1.3 ml (1/4 teaspoon) ground cardamom
- 42 grams (1/3 cup) all-purpose flour
- 5 ml (1 teaspoon) vanilla extract
- 104 ml (7 tablespoons) heavy cream
- .6 ml (1/8 teaspoon) sea salt
- For the filling: In a saute or frying pan combine the sugar with 15 ml (1 tablespoon) water. Cook over medium-high heat for several minutes, swirling now and then, until the sugar has melted and is bubbling. Add the wine and cardamom pods, stirring constantly, until thickened – about 1 minute. Remove the pan from heat and add the lemon juice, stir, and then add the apricots. Gently coat the apricots with the sauce, then use tongs to layer the apricots in your preferred baking dish. Strain the remaining sauce over the apricots (making sure to catch the cardamom pods). Set aside or refrigerate.
2. For the topping: Preheat oven to 191°C (375°F). In a large bowl combine the egg yolks, sugar, lemon zest, ground cardamom, flour, vanilla, heavy cream, and salt. Using an electric mixer, whisk until ingredients are completely blended and thickened, about 1 minute. In a separate bowl, whisk egg whites into soft peaks, then gently fold whites into the batter until just combined. Pour batter over the apricots in the baking dish, allowing some of the apricots to “peek through” the batter.
3. Bake until the batter is risen and golden brown, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve hot, or allow to cool before serving warm. If desired, serve with fresh whipped cream* or ice cream.
*This is nice flavored with a little caster (superfine) sugar, vanilla, and a dash of ground cardamom.