So the season of strawberries is here. And unlike those many times when I had to endure several boxes of very red but very bland strawberries, this year has been quite a delight. Most of the boxes I bought had nice strawberries all the way down to the bottom, not just a few choice berries on top with duds beneath.
And we all know that berries are wonderful for a nice, crumbly tart or a warm, wobbly clafoutis.
But sometimes, one’s palate craves a certain element which makes you deviate from the classics.
You know it may not be the right way to go about it; you know purists will scream; but you think- I’ll give it a try, worse comes to worse it will turn into something only I can eat.
This was something like that.
I wanted to make a chocolatey pudding with strawberries, and I didn’t have cooking chocolate or cream on hand- I could use only what I had in the cupboard. Which meant I would have to use cocoa powder.
I wasn’t up to making custard from scratch; clafoutis was much easier and I like the texture of it- cakey and wobbly and delicious when consumed warm. Oh, and I wanted to bust out my new ramekins. (Not ramekins exactly, but close…. their next of kin. Ramekin, next of kin…get it? Oh, the bad ones are just flowing today.)
CLAFOUTIS-INSPIRED CHOCOLATE AND STRAWBERRY PUDDING (Adapted from The Sweet Life In Paris by David Lebovitz.)
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
- 2 cups strawberries, washed, hulled and sliced
- 3 large eggs
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 1/3 cups whole milk
- Preheat oven to 180C
- Butter the bottoms of 4 ramekins and place strawberries in the bottom of each.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs until smooth. Next, whisk in the melted butter, followed by the flour and cocoa powder and combine until smooth- no lumps! Then add the vanilla extract.
- Whisk in the sugar followed by the milk.
- Pour the chocolatey custard over the fruit and bake for 15-20 minutes. Check on it after 15 minutes- I like mine to be more wobbly in the centre, but if you like yours firmer, then let it sit for longer.
This is not perfect- in fact, I need to try and make some real chocolate pudding- but sometimes a store cupboard quickie-bake can be so very satisfying!
A little cakey, a little custardy, a little rough around the edges most certainly; but the strawberries were warm and yielding and this can satisfy any good-hearted sweet tooth. Sometimes imperfect creations can surprise you!