Culinary master Pierre Koffmann shares his peach clafoutis recipe - a delicious twist on the traditional which swaps cherries for heavenly peaches. This classic French dessert will make an elegant addition to any dinner party.
Koffmann's cooking is undeniably refined; classical yet humble, with provincial French touches grounding the skilful elegance of the food. Taking inspiration from his Gascon roots, Koffmann artfully extracts extraordinary flavour from ordinary ingredients and cuts.
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Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
Start the dish by poaching the peaches. In an ovenproof saucepan, dissolve the sugar in the water over a low heat. Once the sugar has dissolved, add the vanilla pod, seeds and peach halves
2 peaches, cut into halves
250g of water
150g of sugar
1/2 vanilla pod, split and deseeded
Place the saucepan in the oven and gently poach the peaches until tender but still firm. Remove from the oven and set aside. Lower the heat of the oven to 175°C
Remove the vanilla pod and rinse thoroughly under cold water to clean. While the pod is still wet, flatten it with a ruler, cut it into thin slithers and leave in a dry warm place to dehydrate - this will be used to garnish your clafoutis
Remove the peaches from the poaching liquor and leave to cool. Once cooled, chop the peaches into roughly 1cm pieces. Divide the pieces in two – half will be used in the clafoutis itself and the other half will be used as garnish
For the peach coulis, purée the peaches in a blender and strain through a fine sieve. Whisk in the sugar until dissolved and set aside to chill in the fridge
225g of peaches
50g of caster sugar
For the almond cream, cream the butter and sugar together in a heatproof bowl, add the eggs and mix well. Mix the almond powder and flour together in a separate bowl, then add the dry ingredients to the egg mix and set aside
100g of butter, soft
70g of sugar
100g of ground almonds
20g of flour
For the crème patisserie, warm the milk in a heavy-based saucepan. Mix the egg yolks and sugar together in a mixing bowl, then add the custard powder. Slowly add the warm milk to the custard mixture, stirring constantly and making sure there are no lumps
250g of whole milk
60g of egg yolk
70g of sugar
20g of custard powder
Return the mixture to the saucepan and place over a medium heat. Stir constantly until it comes to the boil - the constant stirring will stop it burning. Remove from the heat, pour on to the almond cream mixture and mix
Grease 4 ring moulds which are at least 6 1/2cm in diameter and 3 1/2cm in height. Line the moulds with greaseproof paper and place onto a baking tray. If possible, double up on baking trays - this will help prevent the clafoutis from burning at the bottoms
At this point you can decide from 2 ways to finish the clafoutis; either add your peach pieces directly to the mixture and then use to fill each mould, or create layers in the moulds by adding the mixture followed by the peaches and then more of the mixture. Only fill the moulds two thirds full. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until nicely cooked
Add some of the peach coulis to the centre of each plate and move it around in a circular motion to spread out. Place each clafoutis in the middle of the coulis, then garnish with the chopped peaches. Add a quenelle of vanilla ice cream on top and a thin sliver of a dried vanilla pod. Serve immediately
vanilla ice cream
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