Friday, January 09, 2015

Apple Cinnamon Galette

As briefly alluded to in an earlier post, I have a love/hate relationship with making pies.  However, I think I found a solution.  Pies are not my thing, I can accept that.  But I think galettes are my new thing…and I’m perfectly happy with the compromise.  

Once you learn the concept of a galette (basically a pastry tart with hand-folded edges), the possibilities are endless.  Sweet fillings could include in-season fruits at any time of year.  Savory fillings could include vegetables, seeds, nuts, and cheeses.  I love that galettes allow you to be creative and give you the freedom to call imperfections “rustic” - the foodie artist’s version of abstract art. 

If you want to experiment with different fillings – I highly recommend reading the suggestions and tips found here.  

Apple Cinnamon Galette

5-6 small-medium apples (I used organic gala)
1 ½ sticks cold butter
2 cups flour
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon sugar
Ice cold water
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ cup sugar (plus more for sprinkling)
1 tablespoon whole milk (or cream) 


1) Heat the oven to 400° F (if you have one, place a pizza stone on a low rack). Cut cold, cubed butter into your flour using a pastry cutter, two knives, or your fingers until the largest pieces of butter are about the size of a pea.

2)  Sprinkle ice cold water across the dough and shake the bowl to distribute. Use your hands to mix in the driest patches.  I would start with about ¼ cup water and work your way up until most of the dough is moist but not too much – you will want to be able to roll it out easily.  You can always add a little more flour if needed.

3) Press the dough into a flat, round disc, cover tightly with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for 30 minutes or so. 

 4) While the dough is chilling, prep the fruit.  I used an apple peeler/corer which I highly recommend but you could also just peel the apples and slice by hand.  Try not to cut the apples too far in advance since they will brown and oxidize as they sit.  Sprinkle a little lemon juice on the slices to help prevent this.  Sprinkle sugar and cinnamon on the apples and mix well. 

 5) Roll out your dough until it’s about 12-inches in diameter and about 1/8-inch thick (don’t worry about it being a perfect circle – remember, “rustic” is beautiful :))  Try not to roll too much, since those butter pieces need to remain intact in order for the dough to stay light and flaky. 

 6) Arrange the fruit on top, leaving about 1 1/2 inches clear around the edge of the dough. To fold the edges, fold the edge nearest to you toward the center. Rotate the galette and lift the adjacent piece of edge, and fold toward the center. The important part is really that there are no cracks where the juices will leak out during baking.  

7)  Brush milk on the crust edges. Sprinkle sugar on the edge. Place in middle rack for about 45-55 minutes, possibly more depending on how caramelized you want things. You can rotate halfway through; keep an eye on it to see how it's going. 

When it's done, lift the parchment paper with the galette onto a cooling rack. Wiggle the galette loose from the paper and gently pull parchment paper out while sliding galette to stay on cooling rack. This is important because it helps air out the underside, which can get soggy. Wait as long as you can until cutting the first slice, and enjoy!

It should stay good for a few days in the fridge and is delicious when warmed up a little bit.  A dollop of vanilla ice cream would add a nice touch but it’s great on its own as well.

I hope you try some different variations of galettes and please share your ideas with me! :)

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