Last weekend I found Italian prune plums at my local farm market. The grower told me they were the last of the season. I was so happy I hadn’t missed the season entirely! A simple plum clafouti is one of my favorite ways to use them. A clafouti is basically a sweet crepe batter poured over fruit and baked. A crepe is to a clafouti as an omelet is to a frittata. Like an omelet, a crepe is made in a pan on the stovetop. Like a frittata, a clafouti is baked in the oven. Clafouti is a homey French dessert: not too sweet, not too complicated. It’s a great way to use up overripe or bruised fruit. Kids love it and love to help make it. Italian prune plums are perfect for clafouti because they hold their shape when baked (other plums will ooze out too much of their juices and make for a very soggy dessert). The other fruit that I love in clafouti are cherries, but I’ll have to wait until spring for one of those.
True to their name: Italian prune plums are plums that are dried to make prunes. They’re a fairly small, slightly firm, oval-shaped, and blueish purple in color. They are delicious fresh, dried, or cooked, and they’re also used to make distilled liquors and wine.
Italian Plum Clafouti
- 1 pound Italian prune plums
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 cup corn flour*
- 3 tablespoons and 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 heaping tablespoons sour cream, yogurt, or creme fraiche
- 2/3 cup milk: whole, 2%, or 1%
- Freshly grated rind of 1 lemon
- butter (to butter your baking dish)
- confectioner’s sugar for dusting
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Cut the prunes into quarters and remove the pits. Do not peel them.
In a bowl, combine the flours, 3 tablespoons of sugar, salt, eggs, and sour cream, yogurt, or creme fraiche. Mix until smooth. Add the milk and lemon rind and mix well.
Butter a 9″ pie plate. Pour approximately 1/3 of the batter into the pie plate and bake it until it’s set, about 10 minutes. You do this so the fruit won’t sink down and stick to the bottom of the pan. Remove the dish from the oven when the batter is set and arrange the fruit, in concentric circles on top of the batter. Sprinkle the fruit with the remaining tablespoon of sugar and then pour the remaining batter over the fruit. Return to the oven and bake until set and lightly golden, approximately 40 minutes.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Dust the top with powdered sugar before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature. Leftovers make a lovely breakfast treat.
*I added corn flour to the recipe because I really like the added flavor, but you could use all regular flour or some wheat flour if you’d like.