• 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1c unsweetened, unflavored almond milk
  • 2 tsp maple syrup
  • 3/4c unbleached, all purpose flour
  • scant 1/2c sugar plus some for sprinkling
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2c berries (or any fruit, really !)
  • powdered sugar (optional)

Well, it sure has been a while. And while there are some legitimate excuses, for the most part I have just had a hard time finding the motivation. When most of your comments are spam and you’ve been eating mostly rice cakes, sitting down to write something you think no one will read isn’t really a priority. As for the excuses, my life has been crazy. A baker at my job quit, so I began baking two weeks ago. Obscenely early alarm clocks, a hot ‘n humid kitchen, industrial-sized machines and ingredients that my spindle-arms struggle to lift, plus figuring out how to do things from a boss who refuses to put up with my lack of knowledge and skill…it’s all been pretty intense, kind of hard, and the part where it becomes fun is somewhere far, far in the horizon. But it’s an incredible opportunity, and I know once I get my foot in the door it’ll all be okay. This is what I want to do with my life, and I’m not going to get scared off by 50lb blocks of butter and a little berating now and then.

I also discovered a few weeks ago that I have a lactose sensitivity. On the one hand, I’m really happy–I know what’s been making my stomach hurt for years, and that’s a huge relief. Plus, I can eat small amounts of dairy without it being too bad, and sheep/goat’s milk cheeses are still totally fine. On the other hand, my love for gooey pizza and butter-laden croissants has made the transition hard.

So I woke up this morning, weeded the garden, poured myself a big jar full of home-brewed floral tea, and decided to make a clafoutis. Having spent the past few weeks baking under strict guidelines, I wanted to make something for myself, using my own instructions and ingredients.  I bought a ridiculous amount of fresh, local raspberries and blueberries yesterday, and it just seemed right. I love clafoutis, and I adapted my go-to recipe to use less dairy so my stomach can enjoy it as much as my mouth.I used almond milk instead of regular milk, and used maple syrup where most people would use vanilla, because I love the combination of maple and raspberry.

I know that baking in the summer can be a pain, but some things are just worth the pain/sweat/etc. This is one of those things.

It’s somewhere between a cake, a giant pancake, and custard. It’s great as a breakfast or dessert, at any temperature at all, by itself, or with a heaping side of vanilla ice cream or homemade whipped cream.


Summer Berry Clafoutis
(recipe adapted from sweetsugarbean)

 

Preheat the oven to 375. Put the butter in a 10 inch cast iron pan, and put it in the oven. Meanwhile, beat the eggs, almond milk, and maple syrup together in a large bowl. Then add the flour, salt, and sugar. Whisk together vigorously (but not for too long !) until most of the lumps are out and the ingredients are incorporated.

By this time, the butter should be melted in the cast iron. Remove the pan from the oven, swirling the butter around so it coats the bottom and sides of the pan. Pour the batter into the pan, then put the berries on top, arranging them to your own liking–I just kinda throw them in.

Sprinkle some sugar on top, and put the pan back in the oven for 40-45 minutes, or until golden brown.

Remove the pan from the oven once done and let cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, cut into slices, and serve !

-K