I follow a strange weekend ritual. It could be perfectly equated to having a wardrobe full of clothes but claiming to have nothing to wear. Let me explain – I collect a lot of recipes on the internet and dream of trying them all through the week but when I finally get time to cook/bake, I am clueless.I just surround myself with food magazines, notebooks filled with written recipes, bookmarks deciding what to make and before I know it the weekend is over and it is time to go back to work. Sigh.
This article on galette, for example, sat in my Pocket reading list for the longest time. I love how-to articles like these that don’t throw a fixed recipe on your face but delve into the science of baking. Much needed freedom from carrying the weight of accurate measurements and the pressure to succeed with a recipe.
Did I whimsically bake these galettes without a fixed recipe, you would ask. The answer is yes and no. I tweaked my usual shortcrust pastry recipe a bit and what I got was magical flaky, buttery galettes crunching perfectly with the cinnamon apple filling. DIVINE!
There is one secret to the filling – ground pecans and almonds. I put this mixture on the base of the galette so the bottom doesn’t go soggy and it worked wonders!
But my favourite part of baking these is brushing melted butter on every galette and a generous sprinkling of sugar.
Eaten best with a drizzle of honey/maple syrup and a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
For the pastry dough:
100 gms Unsalted butter
175 gms All purpose flour (maida)
a pinch of salt
2 tablespoons of chilled water
For the filling:
1 medium apple (cored and thinly sliced)
1/2 tbsp cinnamon powder
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp sugar
Chop the butter into small cubes and refrigerate. Measure the flour and refrigerate in a separate bowl. While these are chilling, prepare your filling. In a pan, melt butter and add the apple slices with cinnamon and sugar and cook for a few minutes. Be sure to not cook the apples too much because they will spend good 45 mins in the oven. In a food processor add the pecans and almonds until ground coarsely.
In a bowl, mix the cold butter and flour gently with your finger tips until you have a mixture that resembles bread crumbs. Add a pinch of salt. Now slowly add the water while carefully bringing the dough together in a swirling motion. Don’t knead the dough but just cover in a clingwrap and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes.
Roll out the dough in small portions. Now add the ground pecan and almond powder in the centre followed by the apple mixture. Gently close the ends of the galette. Don’t worry about the shape too much as it is a free form tart. Just make sure all ends are sealed well.
Brush the galettes with melted butter and sprinkle sugar before baking in a preheated oven for 45 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius.
Serve with maple syrup and vanilla ice cream.