Sunday, 7 April 2013

Well Crumbs, Just Take the Last Biscuit!

Clafoutis alla Cannella, di Biscottini al Burro, con Pera & Cioccolato
Cinnamon Butter-Cookie Clafoutis with Pear & Chocolate

Sunday morning again and time for one of my improvised and incredible breakfast ideas! So how does this one grab ya? It doesn't look bad, does it? Looks better than a hard boiled egg, a couple of butter cookies to dip in your coffee and a pear for a little vitamin plus. But basically, that is what you have here- I just love creating so much yummy food out of so few and such simple ingredients!

I made this using those simple old-fashioned biscuits (or cookies if you are in the USA)- the ones that are only good for one dip in your tea before disintegrating! Yes those! What better way to put them to good use than this? With a little cream cheese to help bind the batter and 1 teaspoon of Nutella to drizzle on top as an added bit of naughtiness- this is actually a lot less naughty than it looks ;-) Just like me!

So get ready to have some fun with this one- it's really easy! The first thing I did was to crumble up those 10 biscuits ( I counted for you)... you can use whichever method you like, but I enjoyed chopping them with a knife. Just stack them up and act as though you are cutting fine slices off of them... which of course you can't- they just crumble up- but nicely and finely. I found it to be a quick way to do it and less mess than using a rolling pin say... but go ahead! Have fun! Just get them mashed down nice and fine any way you like!

Next, I added 3 tablespoons of cream cheese... here in Germany, we have something called "Quark", which is actually cheese curds and I used the lowest fat version of that. I stirred it in well and incorporated all of the biscuit crumbs... and what a ball of cement it turned into! Haha! Fear not- everything will be ok as soon as you add just a tiny splash of milk... stir it in and you will have the right consistency when it is like a very thick Greek yogurt.

The pear also needed a little preparation- and I did that next as I needed for them to cool off a little before I could add them to the batter. So I peeled and cored my little pear and then cut it into thin slices, which I simply poached for 2-3 minutes in a little water, spiked with cinnamon and just a little squeeze of honey. After 2-3 minutes, I drained off the excess water and set them to one side to cool. I just wanted them to absorbe a little more misture so they would stay juicy and light upon baking later.

For my next trick, I successfully separated an egg... meaning I dropped the yolk into the crumb and cream cheese mix and the white into a different bowl! Whisking it up into a fluffy snow would have been a little more difficult otherwise! Once the egg white was whisked up nicely, I stirred the yolk into the crumb mix and added cinnamon and a little Stevia to taste- yes, yes- you can use sugar! lol! I then added the egg white and folded it in gently. And that was it- the batter was ready... and so was I! All I needed to do now was turn on the oven and start putting this thing together!

I poured the thick, luscious batter into a lightly buttered oven dish- you will find that the crumbs go on absorbing and binding the moisture in the batter and that it stiffens up- but that is a good thing- it will give this a lovely, cake-like consistency once it is baked which is so nice! I laid the pear slices out decoratively on top- starting on the outside and working in... it is also easier than it looks to get them looking so pretty if you follow that tip.

Once it was assembled, I popped my clafoutis into a pre-heated oven at 350°F for 25 minutes until it was fluffy and golden brown. Whilst the clafoutis was cooling off a little, I took a teaspoonful of Nutella, popped it into a ramekin and popped that into the oven... and 5 minutes later it was melted and wonderfully rich and smooth and perfect for drizzling on top! Even I like a treat at times... and I recommend you treat yourselves to this too! You're going to love it!

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