A Taste of Brittany, France with Me (plus a recipe!)
“My dad is French and his side of the family all still live in France. I'm super close with my grandparents (my Granny and Pappy) and visit them each European summer.
They lived in Paris forever and in their warm little kitchen is where my earliest and fondest food memories were formed. Recently they moved to Brittany for a more peaceful lifestyle. In their Brittany home, the kitchen is bigger than in Paris and the markets they shop at every second day are even more abundant with mind-blowing produce.
In anticipation of my arrival, my grandparents always have something delicious in the oven or on the stove. It might be a peach or nectarine tart, served warm with fromage blanc. It could be a pot of apricot jam bubbling away to slather my croissant with, or strawberry and rhubarb compote to eat by the ladle. But my favourite of all is when there's a cherry clafoutis in the oven. This incredibly simple dessert is, for me, the pinnacle of comfort food. It's light and only gently sweet, and has the most beautiful smooth texture that is offset by tart, juicy cherries.
Clafoutis can be made with any fruit, and because cherries aren't in season in New Zealand, I've created a recipe which calls for prunes. I hope you enjoy.”
My Prune Clafoutis
30g butter, melted
4 organic eggs
Zest of ½ orange
80g soft brown sugar
125ml whole milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbsp ground almonds
30g sliced almonds
Preheat the oven to 180C fan bake.
Pour the melted butter into a shallow ovenproof dish, approx 20cm wide, making sure it coats the sides too.
In the bowl of an electric mixer with a whisk attachment, whisk the eggs, orange zest and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes on high.
Fold the ground almonds into the egg mixture.
Finally, pour in the milk, cream and vanilla, whisking lightly.
Pour the batter into the greased dish and drop in the prunes. Scatter with the sliced almonds.
Bake for approximately 30 minutes until golden brown and set but still light and soft inside.
Serve warm with cream.
To store, cover well with plastic wrap and keep in the fridge for up to a week.
Originally published in the NZ Herald, 15 July 2019