Galettes have been haunting me for a while now. That simple, yet incredibly brilliant way to shape the crust in such a genius form-free form. Way less fussy than any traditional fruit tart. No tart pans, no crimping, no perfect edges or precisely fluted sides; just a crisp, flaky, buttery crust and a bunch of fresh fruit. Now you see the ‘why’ of all that haunting, am I right? Et voilà! That is how this entrancing mixed berry galette was born.
And since we are talking about fruit, note that almost any fruit of your choice —or whatever fruit you have on hand— will be just fine: tart stone fruits (such as apricots, nectarines, peaches, plums, cherries, etc.), berries, figs, grapes, etc. As you may have guessed, I couldn’t but choose a whole lot of assorted berries to fill my first galette with. Isn’t it just great?
In addition to all this awesomeness, you may feel like taking your galette to the next level by enhancing the fruit filling with some extra, yet natural flavour. Thus, you can use some lemon zest, seeds from a vanilla bean, ground spices, or some minced candied ginger instead; depending on the type of fruit you finally choose and your personal preferences. I just love that citrusy twist with my berries!
And last but not least, do not, by any means, lose sight of that crust. As there’s no real hard work involved in this recipe, you are not going to even think about using store-bought pastry dough, right? I strongly recommend that this time you invest some time and dedication in making your own homemade, never better, from scratch shortcrust pastry dough.
Had you not tried making your own shortcrust pastry before, believe me, it does make a difference; I can guarantee you that your taste buds will end up doing the hula dance. You’re welcome…
- 1½ cups (195 g) all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
- ¾ teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons (25 g) granulated sugar
- ⅔ cup unsalted butter, very cold and cut into small cubes
- ¼ cup (60 ml) ice-cold water
- 1 medium egg plus 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
- ¼ cup (25 g) crushed cookies or breadcrumbs
- 3 cups (420 g) assorted berries (I used blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, red currants and wild strawberries)
- ¼ - ½ cup (50-100 g) granulated sugar, to taste
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Grated zest of ½ lemon (the yellow part of the peel)
- 1-2 tablespoons (15-30 ml) fresh lemon juice, to taste
- 3 tablespoons (20 g)* cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon (15 g) unsalted butter, cold and cut in small cubes
- Place flour, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl and whisk until totally combined.
- Using your fingertips or a pastry blender, gently work the cubes of butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
- Drizzle the ice-cold water, 2 tablespoons at a time, over the flour and butter mixture and gently work it together using your hands until you have a ball of dough. Remember not to work the pastry too much at this stage or it will become elastic and chewy, not crumbly and short.
- If using a food processor, place the flour, salt, and sugar and process until combined. Add the butter and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal (about 15 seconds). Pour water in a slow, steady stream, through the feed tube until the dough just holds together when pinched. Do not process more than 30 seconds.
- Sprinkle a little flour over the dough as well as on your hands and pat the ball into a flat disk about 1-inch thick. Sprinkle over a little more flour, then wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place it in the fridge to rest for at least 2 hours (or overnight; it keeps refrigerated for up to 3 days).
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- After the cooling time, place the pastry disk onto a lightly floured work surface and, using a rolling pin, roll out your pastry into a 12 or 13-inch circle, dusting and turning it every so often, until it's about ¼-inch thick. Carefully roll your pastry around the rolling pin, then unroll it carefully over your lined baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap again and refrigerate for 20 minutes more.
- Meanwhile, preheat the oven (electric) to 425 degrees F (220ºC) and place the oven rack into the middle position.
- Gently wash the berries and let them drain. Then, in a large mixing bowl, using a rubber spatula, lightly toss together the berries, ¼ cup of the sugar, 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice, lemon zest, and cornstarch. Let it rest for about 15-20 minutes. After this time, taste the filling and add more sugar/lemon juice if necessary.
- Remove the dough from the fridge and evenly sprinkle crushed cookies or breadcrumbs onto the dough surface, leaving a 2-inch border uncovered around the edge. This will keep the crust crisp by absorbing some of the fruits' juices.
- Pile the berry mixture over the cookie/breadcrumb barrier, spreading the fruit out, leaving the border free around the entire galette.
- Scatter the butter cubes over the fruit and gently fold the edge up and over the filling, pleating to hold it in. Make sure the folds of the dough are sealed to prevent fruit juices from leaking while baking.
- Using a pastry brush, gently brush the pastry generously with the egg wash and sprinkle some sugar on the crust.
- Bake until the filling is bubbling and the pastry is golden brown, about 25-30 minutes.
- Let your galette cool slightly on a cooling rack for at least 15-20 minutes before serving.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.
It keeps covered for up to 2-3 days at room temperature.
- Despite the measurements indicated above, you may like your galette with a wider or a narrower edge.
- If there's some galette leftovers the next day (as if such a thing may occur...), you can use the microwave on medium-low in 30 second bursts.
- You can use jam as a barrier between the fruit and the pastry dough instead of crushed cookies or breadcrumbs. But remember to check the amount of sugar in the filling; you may need to reduce it.
- *Use more cornstarch for juicy stone fruit (up to 5 tablespoons) and less for blueberries, raspberries and figs (3 tablespoons will suffice).
- Despite their distinguishing rustic appearance, you can play around with the look of your galette by varying the way you pleat the edges as you fold them in over the filling. You can opt for a more geometric look by folding up large sections of the edge of the dough circle, overlapping them slightly (like I just did). You can also pleat in one direction for a uniform look or even fold the dough onto itself in regularly spaced pleats for a perfectly round tart. You can even crimp the excess for a pulled-purse look, you just need to pinch the excess up away from the filling as we fold the dough over.