I have always considered myself quite a nice person. I like food of all shapes, flavours and colours. From every country and continent. I don’t discriminate, I am an equal opportunity eater. It’s only the doctors who say I’m intolerant. And certain foods who refuse to tolerate me. They certainly refuse to recognise and respect my right to eat them without major physical discomfort and distress.

Gluten and lactose are not my friends.

Despite the negative attitudes surrounding me from many of those I love best, (cakes, ice cream, hot toast) I decided to become a chef. Not always easy when you live in a bread and milk filled world. I like to think that this has helped me become a better person as I embrace my differences and refuse to let the gluten get me down. I believe InTolerance. I am the InTolerant Chef.

Food should not be about what you can’t eat, but what you can and what you enjoy eating. This blog is about my journey of cooking and eating and discovery. It’s not a definitive guide to allergy awareness nor do my intolerances make me an expert. Your body is your responsibility, not mine. I only know what works for me.

I can tell you this..... No glutens were harmed in the making of this website.

December 11, 2010

Cherry Christmas!

Have yourself a Cherry little Christmas!

Today at our lovely farmers markets we were inundated with choices of cherries. Here in Canberra we are quite close to Young, the cherry growing capital of Australia, and so I guess we get first bite of the cherry when it comes to shopping. There were bright red ones, light red ones, yellowy ones, my favourite deep burgundy ones, graded ones in gift boxes, and seconds piled in mounds on tables. I got these absolute beauties at the incredible price of $5 a kilo! And they were very generous kilos I might add. I realised I should make the most of this season bounty as the recent rains and floods have wrecked havoc with local crops and this could be all we can get this year.

As always the hardest part of any cooking process is deciding what to cook.... So many delicious options.... In the end I chose Cherry Clafoutis, a classic French dessert that is a kind of hybrid tart or flan with a custard base. Obviously a perfect choice for gluten free cooking! MiddleC is an absolute fracophile after studying it for 6 years and so I am dedicating this recipe to her and her French email buddy who lives in Provence. I call her MiddleC's imaginary friend as their relationship is computer based and they aren't likely to meet in the near future, but the good thing about technology is that they are closer and are in contact more than many of her 'real' friends.

According to Wikkipedia, a traditional clafoutis is made with the cherries whole and unpitted as this intensifies the flavour. So, this is my official reason for doing so, not because I couldn't find my cherry/olive pitter at all. After all,who am I to mess with tradition?

I actually based this recipe on one I read in the local newspaper when they interviewed the wife of the French Ambassador. When I researched further, I decided that with it's lower sugar content it was a good choice for me and my insulin levels and hopefully my waistline,even though I did use cream- low fat of course!

Cheery Clafoutis

750g cherries

100g gluten free flour

1/2 tsp gfree baking powder

6 small eggs

125 grm sugar

1 vanilla pod,seeds scraped

nice pinch of salt

25grm melted butter

250 grm lactose free cream - or dairy free milk equivalent

1. Beat the eggs in a mixing bowl for about 5 minutes or until they have tripled in size.

2. Add in the sugar and vanilla seeds and beat for another 5 minutes.

3. Sift in the flour, salt and baking powder and fold in carefully so as not to knock out the fluffiness. * I use this great spoon with a hole in it for careful mixing. It works great for folding ingredients together gently, but I don't remember where it came from sorry.

4. Slowly add in the melted butter and cream, pouring it down the side of the dish, again so it keeps the air incorporated.

5. Place the cherries in the bottom of a greased dish- pitted or not, I will leave to your discretion. And carefully pour the batter mixture over.

6. Bake at 180* for about 45 mins, the clafoutis should be puffed slightly, set and browned around the edges.

7. Dust with icing sugar and serve still warm. With or without cream, again, I leave it to your discretion, but I know what I would do.

I realised my clafoutis was baked in a dish that was a bit too deep, next time I'll drop the temperature to about 160 and bake for a bit longer. Or I could just bake it in a shallower dish as I should have in the first place!

So dear Readers, what is your ultimate Christmas fruit?

P.S. The winner of the giveaway is.... drumroll please ...... Eagles 17, I couldn't find any details for you though, so please contact me ASAP so you get your goodies before Christmas.


  1. Oh my.. this looks divine! Cherries are definitely up there as my ultimate Christmas fruit, as are pomegranates, and figs... MMmmmmm

    ps- didn't know you could buy lactose-free cream! wow :)

  2. It looks delicious! Cherries really signal Christmas to me! We bought lots today and I spent a good five minutes picking through them to get the best! :D

  3. A Cherry Cheery Christams. Love cherries. I can eat a bowl just like that :)

  4. Wow 5aud a kilo that is amazing. They are 2 or 3 here and they grow tonnes of them. İ have made this before with tinned apricots- very nice too. Come cherry season I will be making this. (bright red ones you said, are they they sour cherries?) we have 2 kinds here sweet and sour the sour ones are great for cooking and making drinks from. Maybe you got that tool from tupperware!

  5. Ha- my cherries never make it to a dessert, I eat them all too soon!

  6. Awesome - you seem to have read my mind! I have SUCH an appetite for cherries lately! Unfortunately it's winter here, so no fresh cherries at sight, and the store where I went grocery shopping today didn't have any frozen. Mmph. But I won't give up! Some day soon (hopefully) I'll get some! And then I'll make cherry porridge or rice pudding with cherries or something like that.

    Your clafoutis looks fab! I've never heard about putting the cherries in the middle, I know them to be equally distributed. Something learned again! :D

  7. What a wonderful way to use cherries!!! :)

  8. MiddleC is one smart cookie for loving all things French :) How wonderful that she has an email friend in Provence! This looks beautiful, I love a delicate clafoutis.
    Heidi xo

  9. Just so you know, my french friend is real! I speak to her on a daily basis. And although you think she's not, may I just remind you that you have internet buddies too, Mum?

    And this was nice. Much nicer than the somewhat dodgy one we made back in highschool French. But that's only to be expected if you made it.

  10. I'm so getting one of those spoons for folding. Wonderful little tip Luv. Now.., the Cherry Cheery Clafoutis - it looks so good I may have to try this very soon. I too saw all the wonderful cherries at the markets and got ma-self a very generous kg too.., although it was gone by the next day. Have to go back and try again, this time with discipline attached to these tasty little morsels. I do love cherries.

  11. What a great dish for this seasonal fruit! I wish we had cherries all year round :) This Clafoutis looks delicious.

  12. What a bargain! $5 a kilo! Cherries make me feel all Christmasy......

  13. Cherries seem wildly appropriate for Christmas...such a deep crimson! But alas, they're not available here during the holiday season. Otherwise, I'd run out to make your delicious clafoutis.

  14. Yeah, mum, you have internet buddies too! ;-)

    Beautiful pud, cherries never last long enough here for cooking though! It was a hard season in Young - all the rain played havoc with the crops - but Pete's aunt dropped off a box for Small Man recently, which made him very happy! :)

  15. Yes, Dear Readers, I count you all as friends! It's just waaay to easy to tease MiddleC as she falls for it every time!
    Simcha, you might be right about tupperware, I checked though and the spoon has no brand marked on it. It really is good for folding.
    For those of you stuck in the northern hemisphere, all I can say is "gather ye cherries while you may" It's swings and round abouts... you have the fruits when we're pining for some in the middle of our winter. I hope you poor darlings aren't too cold and freezing. Beleive it or not, Australia is having some terrible weather and snow is predicted to fall on the Victorian Peaks today!! It's pretty cool here to and only in the very early 20's, not the mid 30's we would normally expect. Hmmm, I'm dreaming of a white Christmas may not be unrealistic down under!

  16. Looks and sounds awesome! A really eye catching dessert.