New Zealand’s favourite autumnal fruit meets a fancy-sounding but super-simple French dessert. The result? Delicious.
There is only so much you can do with the fruit that drops (non-stop) from 17 feijoa trees. We’ve had ripe fruit peppering our lawn now for over two weeks. So far I’ve used them to flavour water kefir, I’ve made feijoa and ginger shrub and given or traded countless buckets of them to anyone and everyone I know. Next I’ll roll up my sleeves, don the kitchen apron and fill dozens of jars with feijoa chutney and feijoa jam. Enough to last the year and have as gifts. But the most delicious use of the feijoas yet has to be this feijoa and lemon clafoutis. It is so wonderfully easy to prepare, contains pantry staples and makes such an understated yet absolutely delicious dessert. I can see this fast becoming my go-to. Swap the feijoas out for pears or even frozen berries as the season ends.
FEIJOA & LEMON CLAFOUTIS
- 30g + 1 tablespoon butter
- zest 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste/extract
- 2 eggs
- 4 tablespoons sugar
- 1¼ cups milk
- ½ cup (75g) flour
- 7-8 large feijoas, peeled, quartered lengthwise
- icing sugar, to dust
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Melt 30g of the butter over a low heat in a small pan. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Grate in the lemon zest and stir in the vanilla.
Put the eggs and 2 tablespoons of the sugar into a bowl and whisk together. Add the milk and a pinch of salt and whisk again until well combined.
Gradually add the flour, whisking as you go to avoid any lumps. Whisk in the melted butter, then set the batter aside while you prepare the feijoas.
Set a heavy-bottomed oven-proof frying pan* over medium heat and melt the remaining tablespoon of butter. Arrange the quartered feijoas around the edge of the pan, reserving a few slices for the centre. Sprinkle over the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar and cook the fruit for 5 minutes over medium heat until the feijoas are beginning to soften and the sugar has dissolved and starts to form a caramel.
Remove the pan from the heat, pour over the batter then put in the oven to cook for 20 minutes, or until just set. Once cooked, remove from the oven and set aside to cool a little. Dust with icing sugar if desired – it will melt and disappear if the clafoutis is too hot, however. I served mine with a 50/50 mix of yoghurt and mascarpone sweetened with a touch of maple syrup and a dash of vanilla bean paste. It was delicious.
*If you don’t have an oven-proof frying pan, grease an oven-proof dish of the same diameter. Once you have cooked the fruit for 5 minutes in the pan, arrange it in the bottom of the dish, pour over the batter and cook as per instructions above.
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