Apr 13, 2013

Cherry flan

It's not cherry season yet. But I've had enough of apple cakes and mousses. I wanted a bright color and a bit of Summer taste.
This morning, I bought a jar of pitted cherries in compote. For the rest of the morning, I was thinking what to make with them. Then I got hungry, was forced to decide on a project, made it in 5 minutes, waited for 1 hour, took a couple of pictures and had it for lunch. We all did, the flan is gone. I guess we all have missed summer.

I bought cherries with another idea in my head, but I didn't find the recipe I liked. I bought frozen raspberries as well hoping to make something amazing. The thing is that, besides mousse or sauces, frozen raspberries don't do well in desserts. I tried this following recipe on Sunday evening with frozen berries, defrosted and strained. It was OK, but the dough was mostly red. Still better than an apple from the oven.

The cherry flan is a French idea. Old books called for whole cherries, with pits, for more fantastic taste. I came across the recipe in Mrs. Child's book and on an Italian website. The batter is very basic, like for pancakes. At the end of baking, the dough is set but not dry, which doesn't make it look like a cake. Something between custard feeling and a cake. A flan. Refreshing, light and sweet. 

And I thought I would have a snack for the girls tonight (Hania and her sleepover friend). Cheese toast anyone? With or without ketchup?

Recipe adapted from Julia Child
time: 5 min preparation + 1 hr baking = 1 hr 5 min


  • 2 1/2 cups (330 g) compote, pitted cherries, strained from liquids (without squeezing)
  • 1 1/4 cups (300 ml) milk
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • grated zest form 1 small lemon (Julia recommended vanilla)
  • 1/2 cup (75 g) flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • butter for the baking form
  • powder sugar for finishing

  1. Preheat oven to 350F/170C. Butter a 30cm/12inch tart form. I lined mine with buttered parchment paper.
  2. Place all the ingredients in the order listed above (except cherries) into an electric blender. Mix on high speed for 1 minute. 
  3. Pour about 1/4 inch (1/2 cm) of the batter onto the prepared form. Place in the hot oven for about 5 minutes, till you see a film forming on top. Arrange cherries on top (better if in one layer). Pour the rest of batter on top of cherries. Place it in the hot oven for 1 hour, till it's puffed and browned. Check if the toothpick from the middle comes out clean. Take it out of the oven. Just before serving, sift it with powder sugar on top. It will look like a tart and it's usually eaten warm.

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