Savory Clafoutis with Summer Vegetables and Goat Cheese
A twist on a classic French dessert, this easy and elegant savory clafoutis colorfully highlights summer vegetables. Great for brunches and picnics!
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A quick omelet or frittata is one of my go-to weeknight meals. I love these dishes because they’re nutritious and you can make them with whatever protein, cheese, and veggies you have on hand—which means they’re never quite the same. For brunch on the weekends, I like to upgrade such egg-based dishes with a bit of forethought. Two of my favorite “fancier” brunch dishes are Frittata di Pane, or bread frittata—a savory bread pudding—or savory clafoutis, a twist on the classic cherry-studded French dessert.
By fancy, I don’t mean complicated. Neither Frittata di Pane nor savory clafoutis are complicated to make (head over to my bread frittata recipe to learn more about that dish). Here, I’ll show you how you can make an easy but impressive dish that’ll spark conversations around your brunch table.
At the base of the clafoutis is a thick egg batter similar to that of a crêpe. In fact, making clafoutis is no more complicated than making crêpes or pancakes! You whisk together eggs, milk, and cream, and then add flour and sugar (if you’re making a sweet clafoutis). A clafoutis puffs up during baking and then deflates upon resting. This creates crusty edges and a delightful custardy center. Think quiche with a bit more substance.
This savory clafoutis is a celebration of summer vegetables. I start by quickly roasting diced zucchini and eggplant so both veggies release some of their water (this helps you avoid a soggy clafoutis). Then I transfer the roasted vegetables to a parchment paper-lined springform pan and cover them with the savory clafoutis batter. Because I always like to make dishes that are both delicious and pretty, I dot the clafoutis with stem-on cherry tomatoes (but you can use any type of cherry tomatoes) and rounds of sharp, deliciously gooey Sainte-Maure goat cheese. Just before serving, I sprinkle the savory clafoutis with toasted almonds for crunch and more fresh herbs for show, and I serve it with a bright leafy salad.
Helpful Tips for Making Savory Clafoutis
Dice your veggies evenly: Cutting the zucchini and eggplant in an even dice will allow the veggies to roast at the same speed and create the best texture in the clafoutis.
Pick your goat cheese carefully: I like to use Sainte-Maure-de-Touraine goat cheese, which is a flavorful, matured cheese. Sainte-Maure usually showcases a sharper, dryer center surrounded by a creamy, melty layer, and an edible fuzzy white or gray rind. The cheese is either sold with a straw running through the log’s middle, or several straws running outside the log. Sainte-Maure delivers two different textures upon baking—the center becomes super creamy and the outer layer becomes melty as the cheese ages—which makes it especially great for this savory clafoutis. If you can’t find Sainte-Maure goat cheese, feel free to substitute any variety of creamy, log-like goat cheese.
Make ahead of time, but not way ahead: This savory clafoutis is a sturdy dish you can bring to a picnic or potluck. It needs to be made a few hours ahead, so it has time to cool and rest to achieve its best texture. This means you can make it up to a half-day ahead of time, but I’d recommend eating it within a day or two. The vegetables will release some water over time, which will change the texture of the dish. If you refrigerated leftovers, I recommend reheating slices in a low oven to enjoy the dish at its best right up to the last bite.
Preheat the oven to 450°F (220°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread the diced zucchini and eggplant over the baking sheet, then drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Stir to coat the vegetables with the oil, then roast for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest while you prepare the savory clafoutis.
Lower the oven temperature to 350°F (175°C). Oil a 9-inch (23-cm) springform pan, then line with a large square of parchment paper, carefully pushing it to the bottom of the pan and pressing against the sides so they are covered to the top of the pan.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, milk, cream, and salt together. Add the sifted flour and whisk to incorporate. Stir in the fresh herbs and chives.
Scatter the roasted zucchini and eggplant over the bottom of the prepared springform pan. Give the savory clafoutis batter another quick whisk, then pour over the roasted vegetables. Dot the clafoutis with the cherry tomatoes, stem side up, then tuck slices of goat cheese in between.
Bake the savory clafoutis for 30 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature.
Sprinkle the cooled savory clafoutis with toasted sliced almonds. Slice and serve with a leafy green salad.
Store leftover savory clafoutis in an airtight container. Reheat slices in a low oven (300°F/150°C) before serving.
Did you make this?
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