Throughout most of my adulthood I've been known to collect cookbooks, recipe printouts, food pictures...pretty much whatever seems to possess the capability to collect a prolific volume of dust, only to let them sit in our storage unit which, by the way, is the bane of our existence and we wouldn't recommend anybody to go that route. It isn't that I didn't appreciate the content of said books. No, of course not, because how could anybody not love Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking? Especially when she was the one who introduced me to such a wonderful and easy dish as clafoutis.
Sometimes, well okay, a lot of the time, I would zealously bookmark more recipes than I could swallow quite literally, only to find myself daunted by a bottomless list of 'to-make-in-the-near-future' that would soon become forgotten altogether.
Alana's first book, and certainly not the last, I hope, is somehow made uniquely in a way that my ENFP driven personality can deal with. Maybe it is no wonder since Alana herself once mentioned to me that she too is an ENFP! She understands readers like myself and vice versa. At least, that's how I reassure myself when self doubt sinks in.
The Alternative Baker is a trove of gluten free treasures for both the gluten sensitive and omnivore alike. In my opinion, its number of recipes is suitable for most people in today's busy society since, after all, even sitting down for a meal proves to be an impressive feat. Her book shouldn't come off as intimidating for most people who are vaguely familiar with the concept of gluten free ingredients. Alana does such an impressive job in demystifying the obscure world of gluten free flours. I mean, who knew there was such a thing as chestnut flour? Certainly not me--until I became well acquainted with her and Sarah's unique approach inside the kitchen. And better yet, it all seems so doable for those of us who are somewhat scatterbrained (ADD) when it comes to projects and tasks. The recipes themselves are rather easy to follow because of Alana's reassuring style of writing which are then complemented by tips and lessons on gluten free ingredients, all accompanied by images that are sure to make one ooh and aah at every turn.
The original recipe calls for apricots and rightfully so, as I can imagine how divine they would taste in a clafoutis dish. Since I didn't have any on hand and the guava tree in the yard was just pleading to be relieved from all those ripened guavas, I went ahead and baked them into the clafoutis. Fingers crossed and all. The outcome was surprisingly good since I initially felt like it was a gamble to pair it with cardamom. So go ahead, use up those apricots or guavas and enjoy!
Guava Clafoutis with Cardamom and Honey
Makes 6-8 servings || Barely adapted from Alternative Baker by Alana Tobin
3 tbsp unsalted butter, plus 1 tsp for greasing pan
3 tbsp honey, plus 4 tbsp for drizzling
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp fine almond flour
1/4 cup sweet white rice flour (I use Mochiko)
1/4 cup oat flour
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp sea salt
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
6 small guavas or 3-4 large ones, deseeded and sliced
Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 400 F. Grease a 9-10 inch solid tart pan with 1 tsp of butter and place on a rimmed baking sheet.
In a small pot set over a medium flame, melt the remaining 3 tbsp butter and 3 tbsp honey with vanilla extract. Remove from heat and let it cool for 10 minutes. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until smooth. ***Alana recommends straining or sifting the gf flours but I ran out of time so I simply mixed them together. The result was still amazing!*** Whisk in the flours little by little into the egg mixture until it is smooth, then whisk in melted butter and vanilla mixture. Gradually whisk in the milk and heavy cream.
Pour the batter into the pan and arrange the guava halves or slices, cut side up, over the batter. Bake the clafoutis until puffed and golden, about 30-35 minutes. Let it cool for at least 20 minutes, drizzle with remaining 4 tbsp of honey. Serve warm or room temperature. Leftovers can be refrigerated airtight for up to several days; reheat prior to serving if you like. Sometimes I also enjoy it with a dusting of confectioner sugar prior on top!