Several Sundays ago what had been planned as a simple meal at home for Alfredo and me turned into an impromptu dinner party for six—a last-minute gathering calling for that additional flourish known as dessert. Time was limited, though, and so I turned to one of my favorite dessert-in-a-pinch options: clafoutis. Let’s start by addressing that name, which most people aren’t familiar with, and which always makes me feel like an ass when it comes out of my mouth (instead I usually describe it as “a French pancake/flan-like thing,” which does a better job of summing up what it’s all about). The other thing to know is that the dish originated in the southwestern region of France (Limousin, to be exact), and was created as a kind of baked pudding to showcase the region’s summer cherries. All of which is great, except I’ve never actually made it with cherries, in part because I’m such a fan of the variety made with apples. For years that’s been my clafoutis standard, and one I would probably not have deviated from, except for the fact that I happened upon this recipe for a cranberry-walnut version in Sunday Suppers at Lucques (a great cookbook, by the way, for anyone not familiar with it). Now I’m not a huge walnut fan (in their raw form they make the back of my throat itch), but I do love cranberries and thought the combination had a festive, holiday quality to it. So I decided to mix things up a bit and give it a whirl.