Clafoutis made easy

With the first semester well behind us, and the cold weather keeping people cooped up and frustrated, everyone could use a little indulgence and flavor for their taste buds.Clafoutis — pronounced “Clah-foo-tee” — is a French dessert that walks a fine line between pie and custard, and is filled with fruits.To serve eight you’ll need the following:½ cup of flour3 eggs½ cup of sugar¾ cup of milk½ stick of melted butter1 pinch of salt2 tbsp vanilla extract2 tbsp spiced rum (optional)3 servings of fruit (for example, 3-4 apples/pears/plums, 3 cups cherries(with pits)/berries)OR3 cups of chocolate chips1 bowl1 whisk1 medium cake/pie tinFirst, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.Mix flour, sugar and salt in the bowl, then crack the eggs and pour in the milk, butter, vanilla and rum. Stir with the whisk steadily until the dry and wet ingredients have fully mixed and there are no clumps.For the filling, traditionally cherries, pears, apples or berries have been used, but bananas, plums, apricot and almost any fruit will work. Chocolate or carob chips can be used, as well.For larger fruits, slice into small hors d’oeuvre-sized pieces, peeling them beforehand if necessary.With any remaining butter, grease the entire tin — including its sides.   For a delicious sugary crust, you can then sprinkle a dusting of sugar over the butter and shake the tin to distribute it.Gently pour the batter into the tin and let it settle for a few seconds. Take your filling of choice and add them into the batter, once again making sure it is well distributed. If you wish, you can decorate the clafoutis by placing the fruit or chips in patterns on the surface of the batter.Place the tin in the 350 degree oven and let it bake for roughly 30 minutes.When it is ready, the clafoutis will be a light golden brown that is solid but still mushy, like bread pudding or a casserole.Remove the dessert from the oven and let it cool for 20 minutes before eating.  Keep in mind that this can be eaten warm, cold or reheated.  Top with maple syrup, frosting or whipped cream.