Childhood memories bring to light many joyous moments, such as receiving my first Teary Deary Doll from Santa, or the feeling of jubilation riding my two wheeler, finally unassisted by Dad, and not crashing into the lemon tree in the backyard. Two memories really stick out though. The first is homemade toffees in patty pans, covered in hundreds and thousands or peanuts, which I could savour all day, wrapped in a handkerchief in my pocket when the sugar fix had wained. The second is autumn apples, Golden Delicious apples, the size of a softball on steroids, the juice running down to my elbows with every deafening crunch. These apples were straight from the orchards in King Valley, and a large box would always be sitting on the table of our back verandah, tempting us every time we walked past.
When Bron Marshall (the esteemed winner from last month) announced the theme for Hey Hey it's Donna Day #19 as clafoutis, I was a shattered woman. I'm not normally one who opts for desserts, and thought a savoury clafoutis, maybe baby tomatoes, prosciutto, goats cheese...something along those lines, would satisfy my savoury tooth. This is a popular monthly event founded by Barbara from Winosandfoodies. Check out both of these fabulous blogs.
Finally the penny dropped. Use what is in season. Tomatoes have finished...finito, kaput. Apples rule. So I have combined two of my childhood favourites, apples and toffee to make Toffee Apple Clafoutis.
Ingredients (serves 8)
- Melted butter, to grease
- 6 (about 1.2kg) golden delicious apples, peeled, cored, quartered
- 220g (1 cup) caster sugar
- 80ml (1/3 cup) water
- 100g (2/3 cup) plain flour
- 160g (2/3 cup) sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2 tbs Cointreau liqueur
- 2 tbs vegetable oil
- 2 tbs vanillin sugar
- 500ml (2 cups) milk
- Preheat oven to 200°C. Brush a 10-cup (2.5-litre) ovenproof dish with the melted butter to lightly grease. Arrange apple pieces over the base of the dish.
- Place caster sugar and water in a heavy-based saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to high and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until mixture is golden, occasionally brushing down side of pan with pastry brush dipped in water. Remove from heat, allow bubbles to subside. Pour toffee evenly over apples in dish.
- Combine flour and sugar in a bowl. Whisk in eggs 1 at a time. Add the liqueur, oil and vanillin sugar. Gradually pour in the milk, stirring continuously, until the mixture is smooth. Pour the mixture over the apples. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove from oven and set aside for 10 minutes before serving.