Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Peach, Raspberry & Almond Galette

Missouri peach season is drawing to a close...which makes me very sad. In most cases, by the time a particular vegetable or fruit is nearing the end of its season, I'm beginning to tire of it anyway and am more than ready to move on to the next thing. But this doesn't ever seem to be how I feel when it comes to fresh peaches. I never get tired of them. Because we will still have tree-ripened peaches coming in from Colorado and Idaho for another week or two, I thought I would share one more peach recipe for the year—a peach and raspberry galette.


Technically a galette is a flat, round tart. It can be savory or sweet. The crust is most often made of short crust pastry, but you will also find galettes made with yeast doughs or even a thick batter that produces a "crust" that is more like a rich cake. Most of the time though, when I think of a galette, I think of a rustic, free-form tart—basically the French equivalent of an Italian crostata.

As with a crostata (or any tart made with juicy fruits, for that matter), the most difficult part of making a galette is obtaining a fully baked, crisp bottom crust. One way to insure a nicely crisped crust is to line the unbaked crust with a thin layer of Frangipane. Frangipane—also called almond cream—is one of the wonders of the French pastry kitchen as far as I'm concerned. Made like a cake batter by creaming butter, sugar, finely ground almonds and eggs together, Frangipane is used to fill tarts, cakes and pastries. It bakes into a sweet, rich and tender, cake-like pastry. When spread in a very thin layer over the unbaked crust of a fruit galette it provides complimentary flavor and sweetness. But more than that, as it bakes the frangipane absorbs the juices given off by the fruit, protecting the crust from becoming soggy. The crust of a frangipane-lined galette bakes to a beautiful, crisp golden brown.

When baking a galette or crostata that has not been lined with frangipane (like the Strawberry-rhubarb Crostata I posted last Spring), I always encourage people to set the baking pan directly onto a preheated pizza stone so that the crust will set before the fruit can begin to exude great quantities of juice. Using a stone is not necessary—or, as it turns out, desirable—when baking a galette that has been lined with frangipane. Not only does the frangipane absorb the fruit juices, its inclusion in the tart seems to make it so that the crust bakes more rapidly.  I have discovered that when baked on a baking stone, the bottom of the crust of a frangipane-lined tart will become charred.

This tart is a perfect ending to a late summer menu.  It is beautiful, bursting with fresh fruit flavor and unexpectedly light.  Because I love this tart just the way it is, I have never prepared it with anything other than peaches. But I am fairly certain it would be pretty fine made with pears or figs—both of which are wonderful in combination with almonds and raspberries. So if ripe, summer peaches are already just a memory where you live, you could still try your hand at this tart this year....the seasons for pears and figs are just getting started.



Peach, Raspberry & Almond Galette

1 recipe Galette Dough
1/2 recipe (about 1/2 cup) Frangipane (freeze the other half for later use)
5 medium ripe peaches—1 1/3 to 1 1/2 lbs.
1/2 pint fresh raspberries
Milk or cream for brushing & Sugar for sprinkling

On a lightly floured board, roll dough into a 14-inch round about 1/8-inch thick. Transfer the dough to a parchment-lined, rimless cookie sheet. (Do not use an insulated "CushionAir"-type baking sheet.) Chill the dough. When ready to build the galette, spread the frangipane in a thin (1/8-inch thick) layer in the center of the circle of dough, leaving a 2-inch border. Chill while you prepare the fruit.

Cut a small slit in the skin on the bottom of each peach. Place the peaches in a bowl and pour boiling water over them. Let stand for 30 seconds to loosen the skins; transfer to a towel. Peel, halve, pit and slice the peaches 3/4-inch thick. Reserve pits and peel for the glaze (below).

To build the galette, arrange the peaches in two concentric circles, placing the outer circle of peaches just inside the edge of the frangipane by about a quarter of an inch.




Scatter the raspberries over the peaches.



Carefully fold the edge of the dough up onto the fruit, pleating it attractively and pressing lightly as you go. Pinch the dough to seal any holes—the juices will leak and burn if there are any holes in the dough.  Brush the dough border sparingly with milk and sprinkle generously with sugar.



Bake the galette at 400ยบ for 40 to 50 minutes—until the galette is golden, the frangipane is set and the crust is browned and crisp on the bottom. Rotate the galette after it has been in the oven for 20 minutes. Slide the finished galette, still on the parchment, onto a rack to cool.



Brush the cooled galette with the glaze. This tart is best eaten the day it is made. Chill any leftovers.

Glaze: Bring a 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water to the boil. Add pits and peels of peaches and simmer until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon—15 to 20 minutes. Strain. If necessary, reheat before using.

(Recipe adapted from Boulettes Larder in San Francisco. Boulettes Larder is a combination gourmet/prepared foods shop and small restaurant located in the Ferry Building. In addition to serving the best in local and seasonal foods, the owners are invested in encouraging people to cook real food at home by providing quality prepared food items that a home cook might not have the time or expertise to prepare—doughs, stocks, condiments, etc.)


Galette Dough

1 stick (4 oz.) unsalted butter, chilled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
1 c. plus 2 T. (4 1/2 oz.) all purpose flour
2 T. sugar
1/4 t. salt
2 T. ice water

Place flour and butter in a food processor and pulse/process until mixture is in little pieces. Turn butter and flour mixture into a large bowl and add the sugar and salt. Toss to combine. Drizzle the ice water over the flour mixture. Using your hands (or a fork), fluff the mixture until it begins to clump. If, when you squeeze some of the mixture it holds together, the dough is finished. Turn the dough out onto a counter and form into a mound. Using the heel of your hand, gradually push all of the dough away from you in short forward strokes, flattening out the lumps. Continue until all of the dough is flat. Using a bench scraper, scrape the dough off the counter, forming it into a single clump as you do. Form the finished dough into a thick disk. Chill for at least 30 minutes.


Frangipane

2 oz. (1/2 c.) blanched almonds
1/4 c. plus 1 T. sugar (2 oz.)
4 T. unsalted butter, softened (2 oz.)
1 egg
1/8 t. almond extract 
1 1/2 T. flour


Ingredients for a double recipe of Frangipane

Creaming method:
Place the almonds and 1 T. of sugar in the food processor and process until the almonds are very fine.


 

Cream the butter with the remaining sugar. Cream in the ground almonds. Beat in the egg. Beat in the almond extract and then the flour.

Food processor method (works best if doubling or tripling the recipe):
Place the almonds and the sugar in the food processor and process until the almonds are very fine. Add the butter and process until smooth. Scrape down the bowl and add the egg and extract. Process again just until smooth. Sprinkle the flour over and pulse to combine.


 

Makes about 1 cup.


6 comments:

Chris Beam said...

This is so beautiful and my mouth is watering!! Can't wait to do this one, I'll have to hit the farmer's market Saturday to get fruit.

Katrina said...

Beautiful and delicious. Love frangipane!

Kathy H said...

That is gorgeous!

Paige said...

Thanks Kathy!

Anonymous said...

Hello Paige - I stumbled across your recipe whilst searching for raspberry/almond cake ideas today and have just made the galette. It was wonderful and so good to eat - especially the frangipane! Thank you for a lovely recipe and a great blog (after I decided to make the galette, I looked through all your other posts and now have a nice happy line of recipes waiting to be tried out!) Very excited to have found your blog!

Annie :)

Paige said...

Hi Annie,

I'm so glad you tried and liked the galette! Thanks for spending a few moments looking through old posts...and then letting me know. I would love to hear how other things turn out for you. Happy cooking!