Contest Entry: French Fig Clafouti

September 26, 2010 at 4:49 pm 22 comments

French Fig Clafouti

Entry #2 :: Foodbuzz.com “Project Food Blog” Contest

Challenge Prompt from Foodbuzz: Ready to tackle a classic dish from another culture? Pick an ethnic classic that is outside your comfort zone or are not as familiar with. You should include how you arrived at this decision in your post. Do your research then try to pull off successfully creating this challenge. Try to keep the dish as authentic as the real deal, and document your experience through a compelling post.

VOTE FOR ME HERE 

Even though I don’t speak the language and I’ve only traveled there once, I have an undying love {obsession} with the French lifestyle.  How can you not appreciate rich food, beautiful art, bright scooters, intrinsic romance, classic but flirty style, and an abundance of al fresco cafes?  When I visited the manageably sized city of Lyon for a dear ex-pat friend’s “hen night” weekend {the equivalent of a bachelorette party in the States} , I didn’t have any idea I was in for a fast and furious love affair with the city and French life.  I immediately gravitated to the eclectic street artists, the open-air produce market that lined the river bank, the lusciously verdant flower stands at nearly every turn, the delicious coffee and flavored sodas, the decadent brunch dishes, the pockets of parks and tiny enclaves, and the flirty but classic styles displayed in shop windows.  I sat on park benches and bistro chairs, letting the rush of energetic French conversation wash over me.  I couldn’t get enough. 

Fresh Figs

I have since determined that I am so in love with Lyon that I will someday retire there, at least in part, to live in a little walk-up flat with sun-filled tall windows and a cheerful mix of flea market finds for furniture.  I’ll go to the river’s edge market to buy baguettes and cheese and spend countless hours people watching at cafes.   I’ll take advantage of living on the Continent to travel to any of the remaining European countries I haven’t made it to by then.  It’ll be one long enjoyable holiday! 

Eggs and Fig Halves

In the meantime, I need to work on a few things to prepare for my Franco freedom.  Learning to speak French would seem like a wise step.  But, alas, I’m utterly pathetic at learning languages.  Really, I spent 10 years of school learning Spanish and can barely get past “como se yama?” any more.  I figure I’ll just learn by immersion when the time comes. 

Fig Calfouti

I can, however, start to learn more about French cooking.  It is a cuisine that intimidates me, to be perfectly honest.  It seems so full of sauces and soufflés, all of which require a precise technique.  I decided to start with something more rustic and simple, a dish that embraced seasonal ingredients that would likely show up in that riverside market in autumn.  Figs are heavenly fall fruit and this “clafouti” couldn’t be easier.  I made mine with beautiful farm eggs from Red Haven Farm {isn’t their hand-decorated carton just too cute?}, which created a faultless custard base to amplify the figs’ natural sweetness.   The clafouti did puff up in the oven like a soufflé — so dramatic! — but it’s not meant to stay that way so I didn’t have to deal with the dread of watching it fall and feelings of failure.  This was the perfect introduction to classic French cooking! 

Now, perhaps the remaining nine eggs can be put towards a soufflé…  I think I’ll skip the frogs and snails however. 

VOTE FOR ME HERE 

Fig Diptych

French Fig Clafouti
Country Cooking of France

3 eggs 
1 cup milk
2 tsp. pure vanilla
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup sugar
Pinch salt
Pinch of freshly ground nutmeg
20 or so fresh green or black figs cut in half lengthwise
butter to grease baking dish 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Crack eggs into a medium bowl. Beat with electric mixer until foamy. Add milk, vanilla, sifted flour, sugar and pinch of salt. Beat again until smooth.  Arrange figs artfully, cut side up, in buttered 9-inch ovenproof dish or pie plate. Pour batter carefully over figs. Place in hot oven and bake 40-45 minutes. Batter will rise up towards the end and turn golden when done.

Remove clafouti from oven and let stand 10 minutes. It will sink back down.  Serve with whipped cream if desired.

(serves 8 )

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Entry filed under: Recipes, Sweet Treats. Tags: , , , , .

Voting is Open! Contest Entry: Partying with Food & Flowers

22 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Leyla  |  September 27, 2010 at 5:14 am

    I love this recipe and love clafouti.
    Thank you, as always, for the beautifull photos.

    Reply
  • 2. Jennifer @ Maple n Cornbread  |  September 27, 2010 at 6:36 am

    You have my vote!!! :)

    I loved this post, I can relate in many ways. And this clafouti sounds amazing with the fresh figs- both 2 things I adore but never paired together!

    Reply
  • 3. Eddie@CulinaryStudio  |  September 27, 2010 at 9:01 am

    When I saw your photos, I knew thought that the clafouti was too beautiful to be an easy recipe. Imagine my dismay when I saw that it only contains 8 ingredients! Would you recommend another fruit besides figs? Unfortunately, the figs I can get in NYC aren’t very good this time of year.

    Reply
    • 4. Jennie  |  September 27, 2010 at 9:55 am

      Thanks, Eddie! The most traditional fruit for a clafouti (from what I understand in my research) are cherries. But you could also use raspberries or plums.

      Reply
  • 5. Delishhh  |  September 27, 2010 at 10:42 am

    Love figs and Clafouti but never made them together. Looks awesome! Nice work. You have my vote.

    Reply
  • 6. Christine  |  September 27, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    I’ve been dying for fresh figs…Where did you get yours?

    Reply
    • 7. Jennie  |  September 27, 2010 at 1:43 pm

      Maple Acres! :) Want to plan another get together there?

      Reply
      • 8. Christine  |  September 28, 2010 at 8:09 am

        Sounds good to me!

        Reply
  • 9. Alissa @ Not Just Apples  |  September 27, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    Clafoutis is very tasty, especially with figs. Gorgeous photos too!

    Reply
  • 10. Lisa Orgler  |  September 27, 2010 at 10:38 pm

    I really love your blog and enjoy reading your challenges. I hope you go far, so we can enjoy more of your lovely photographs and recipes. A vote for you again!

    Reply
  • 11. Amelia from Z Tasty Life  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:09 am

    pretty!
    You have one of my votes (see my entry here: http://www.foodbuzz.com/project_food_blog/challenges/2/view/869)

    Reply
  • 12. fattydumpling  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:39 am

    Your photos and foods look so gorgeous and delicious…

    Reply
  • 13. Russell at Chasing Delicious  |  September 28, 2010 at 9:53 am

    This looks scrumptious! I want to try it right away. Good luck!

    Reply
  • 14. @lickmyspoon  |  September 29, 2010 at 2:57 am

    Clafouti… that word is way too fun to say. If I am ever inundated with figs I’ll be sure to try this one. Voting for you, good luck this week!

    Lick My Spoon

    Reply
  • 15. Joy  |  September 29, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    That looks so good. I love fig.

    Reply
  • 16. gingerbreadcake  |  September 29, 2010 at 8:54 pm

    The fig clafouti looks sooo delicious and beautiful! Good for you for baking something that’s always been intimidating to you. Best of luck and great job with the 2nd entry!

    Reply
  • 17. Peggy  |  September 29, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    Brave of you to do a French dish for this challenge! Good luck!

    Reply
  • 18. Nate @ House of Annie  |  September 29, 2010 at 11:33 pm

    Voted.

    Beautiful photos! I love figs. Well done.

    Reply
  • 19. Reeni  |  September 30, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    Your fig clafouti looks so elegant and so very delicious! Good luck in this round – I voted for you!

    Reply
  • 20. Jennie  |  September 30, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Thanks, everyone, for the sweet comments and all the votes!! It makes me happy! :)

    Reply
  • [...] of the food was uniquely seasonal and easy to grab a bite between bouquets.  There was the French Fig Clafouti you’re all familiar with already from the last post.  And the dense moist Pumpkin Bread [...]

    Reply
  • 22. david  |  November 15, 2010 at 2:46 pm

    I love country cooking of France. It was a great experience and reminder of France. Thanks and kudos!

    Reply

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