I’ve been on an “everything is better with pie dough” kick lately, and apparently I’m far from alone, especially when it comes to galettes. Just the other day, my friend Cecile ran this post on Facebook:
“Galettes are definitely the pastry of summer 2015 when 6 friends in 5 different cities post instagrams of galettes over the past 2 days. Where is my galette, I ask you?”
Cecile, since you are in Chicago and I’m all the way out on the West Coast, I can’t help you directly with this request. Indirectly, I can tell you how to make one of these casual hand-shaped fruit-in-pie crust desserts. It is so much easier than it appears (and much easier than pie).
For the past couple of weeks, I’ve been sorting out best practices. Last week in California, Sam, Robin, and Jana came over and sampled a few. I had picked a bunch of small, tart plums, and at first didn’t get the balance of sugar-to-fruit correct. The first was way too tart. I learned, adjusted, and made one that was pretty close to perfect. A strawberry one made with a rye flour crust was also decent enough to go back for seconds. Today, as I type this out from a rental cottage in Seattle, I hit near galette nirvana with a blueberry and peach combo.
Thinking back to last week’s tasting with the amigos, the crazy part was that two of them confessed to not liking pie. I prodded. It turns out that to them, the ratio of fruit to crust in an average pie is all off. There is just too much fruit, and the bottom crust is sort of mush, if anything. But a galette, they decided, had the perfect balance of fruit to crust. And the crust holds its shape, even when covered with fruit. When making galettes, even when they turn out completely ugly with juices oozing everywhere, it is hard to go wrong.
I will never give up on pie, but lately it’s hard to get me to stop messing around with galettes. They can be made in small and large shapes, they bake faster (thus heating up the house for less time), and they are easy to freeze, if you need to preserve the season of a particular summer fruit for a bit longer.
A few tricks I’ve learned: [click to continue…]