“A HUNGRY STOMACH SELDOM SCORNS PLAIN FOOD.” Horace
Have you ever been so busy that you forget to eat? And then when you finally have a moment to realize that you are hungry, what you eat tastes so incredibly good. Which leads you to wonder, was it really that good? Or was I just really that hungry?!
I decided to try this humble, savory galette today. It’s made in stages. First the dough for the crust. Then it chills. Then you fill it. Chill it some more. And then bake it for a half an hour or so. And in between I kept myself kind of busy. So at 4pm when this apple and ham galette was finally ready..I realized that I hadn’t had anything but a cup of coffee today..and I was more than ready to eat it! So simple yet flavorful. A warm, flaky, tender crust, sprinkled with grated smoked gouda and just the right amount of pepper is filled with buttery apples, apricot jam, mustard and ham; lavished with an egg wash and a pinch of sea salt; and then baked to a golden perfection! Yes…I was hungry…..but this was delicious!
Galettes and crostatas are easy and rustic. Rustic, however, is not a matter of laziness, but a matter of simplicity. And I love when a recipe is simple; yet tastes like you’ve spent hours on it! The only lengthy part of this recipe is waiting for your dough to chill. But it is well worth the wait!
FOR THE CRUST:
- 4 cups all purpose flour
- 2 TBSP sugar
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2-3 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 1/2 sticks unsalted, chilled butter, cut into cubes
- 4 oz smoked gouda cheese
- 2 egg yolks, lightly beaten
- 3/4 -1 cup ice water
In the bowl of your food processor, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, pepper and salt. Cover and pulse a couple of times to combine. Add the butter. Cover and pulse again just until the pieces of butter resemble small peas. Add the cheese, cover and pulse a few times again to combine. Add the egg yolks, cover and pulse to combine once more.
Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Gradually add just 3/4 cup of water, stirring with a fork to combine. Squeeze a small handful of the dough together. It should easily hold together without crumbling. If necessary, add more water a tablespoon at a time. (I ended up using close to a cup of water.) When the dough holds together, gather it into a ball, kneading just enough to hold it together. Transfer to a cutting board and divide into 6 equal pieces. Wrap each in plastic wrap, and then pat the plastic wrapped dough ball into a 4 inch disk. Chill for at least an hour.
Yields: 6 galettes
Level of Difficulty: Easy
FOR THE FILLING:
- 3 Granny Smith apples, cored, halved, and cut into 1/4 inch slices
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 2 TBSP apricot or apple jelly, melted
- 2 TBSP lemon juice
- 3 TBSP dijon mustard
- 12-24 slices of smoked ham (my ham slices were small and I used 4 in each galette)
- 1 egg and 1 TBSP water, beaten for an egg wash
- course sea salt and fresh thyme for garnish if desired
Place the apple slices in a large bowl. Add the melted butter, melted jelly and lemon juice and toss. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
On a well floured surface, roll a pastry disk into a 9-10 inch circle, about 1/4 inch thick. Spread 1 1/2 teaspoons mustard over the center of the dough. Overlap 2-4 slices of ham in the center of the dough circle. Arrange 1/6th of the apple mixture on top of the ham. I simply layered the slices of apple in a circle. Be sure to leave about a 3 inch border uncovered. Fold and loosely pleat the dough over the apple slices, leaving the apples uncovered in the center. Using your bench scraper, carefully transfer the dough to the baking sheet and repeat with each dough disk. You will have 3 on each baking sheet. Return the baking pans to the fridge and chill for another hour.
Preheat your oven to 375°F. When ready to bake, use your pastry brush to brush off any excess flour from the galettes. Brush them with the egg wash and sprinkle lightly with the course sea salt. Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown. If you are placing both pans in one oven, rotate them halfway through the baking process.
NOTE: Do you ever notice that sometimes what you make does not look like the picture of the recipe you were following exactly? Here is something that I’ve learned. Because I now have to photograph every thing I make, I try to anticipate how I want it to look and adjust what I need while baking. For instance….this recipe called for the apples to be placed on the ham and left exposed in the center. Yet, in the picture with the recipe, there were pieces of ham poking between the apples! So I pulled the galettes out 10 minutes before they were done and snuck a couple of pieces of ham in each to make them look pretty and ensure that the ham wouldn’t burn. I sprinkled each with fresh thyme once they were out of the oven.
This makes 6 small galettes.
While I thought the apples would make this sweet as well as savory, it is really a more savory dish. It is absolutely scrumptious! I enjoyed having this for my dinner this evening and would easily enjoy it for breakfast or lunch as well. I hope you enjoy it, too!
This recipe was adapted from Fall Baking Magazine