Tart ground cherries are not the traditional cherries one would use for a classic French Clafoutis, but they work brilliantly with this recipe. Ground cherries do not have pits which usually gives a clafoutis the slight almond flavor. With this recipe, you can add almond extract or just forgo the almond and enjoy it as it. Which is wonderful.
When we were in Montreal last weekend we went to the Marche Atwater, which is a fantastic farmer’s market, you can find everything and anything there. I have this crazy addiction to anything France. When I am given the opportunity to shop in a French Supermarche or even a Pharmacie, I go nuts buying all sorts of little things. You can imagine how I was when I saw these ground cherries; I was smiling ear to ear! I have only seen ground cherries one other time, at Lenny’s mother’s house last summer. I knew she would love some so I purchased a big basket to smuggle back to her. We dod eat a large portion, gave her some, and brought the rest back to California.
What is a ground cherry? A ground cherry also known as a Physalis is a small orange fruit similar to a very small cherry tomato, but it is enclosed in a large papery husk, which reminded me of a paper lantern. The small fruit does not have a pit, but rather a bunch of tiny seeds. The taste is slightly tart with a mild, and refreshing acidity.
I love making clafoutis and whenever I have some stone fruits lying around that are in need of love, I fall back onto a clafoutis. A traditional recipe is made with cherries but any stone fruit works just as nicely. The texture is somewhat custard-like but a little firmer. I usually take the pit out of my fruit when I make it; therefore, I add either almond extract or I use almond flour, which gives it a great texture too. This is a great and easy recipe to have on hand all year!
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Ground Cherry Clafoutis
** 2 serving
4 ounces ground cherries
4 tablespoons brown or regular sugar
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons whole milk
1/2 teaspoon almond extract or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
butter, just enough to butter the dishes
powdered sugar, to garnish and optional
Heat oven to 350.
Peel the ground cherries but keep whole.
Butter 2 small gratin dishes and lay the ground cherries on the bottom.
Beat the egg in a medium bowl.
Add the sugar, flour, milk, and extract, mix until well blended.
Pour over the ground cherries and place the dishes onto a cookie sheet.
Bake for 20 – 30 minutes, until golden and lightly puffed.
Serve with a sprinkle of powdered sugar.