Yesterday was one of the most leisurely Sundays I’ve had in months. I had planned to do a cyclocross race in Milwaukee—and even drove part way there. But I promptly turned around when I heard radio reports of a tornado warning in the area. It sounded bad. I love CX—but not that much. And so suddenly, my busy Sunday was wide open. And there was no going outside.
Instead of racing my bike, I decided to make a butternut squash galette—which is like a free form pie. The recipe I used is from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook, and it’s one of those recipes that is ideal for a leisurely fall day, or best broken up into manageable pieces (like making the dough a day in advance). It’s not a difficult recipe, but it does take time. Thankfully, my time was well rewarded. This is easily one of the best recipes I’ve made in quite a while. The galette is beautiful, a complete show stopper, not to mention incredibly flavorful. It’s hard to get a sense of its size from the picture, but this galette is massive. We’ll easily have leftovers for a week. When you put that much effort into a dish, it sure is nice to have enough to enjoy for more than one meal. Or enough to feed a crowd.
Butternut Squash and Caramelized Onion Galette (from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook; makes one 12-inch galette, serves 8)
For the pastry:
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon table salt
16 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/3 cup ice water
For the filling:
2 small or 1 large butternut squash (about 2 1/2 pounds)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon butter
2 large sweet onions, halved, thinly sliced in half-moons
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste
2 cups grated Italian fontina cheese
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme or 2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage (I used sage)
1 egg yolk beated with 1 teaspoon water for glaze
Make pastry: In a bowl, combine the flour and salt. Add the sticks of butter and, using a pastry blender or food processor, break up the bits of butter until the biggest pieces are the size of pebbles. In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream, vinegar, and water, and pour this over the butter-flour mixture. Stir or pulse until a dough forms, use your hands to bring the dough together into a ball, wrap it in plastic, and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour or up to 2 days.
Prepare squash: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Peel the squash, then halve and scoop out seeds. Cut into 1/2-to-3/4-inch chunks. Pour 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over two baking sheets. Lay the squash chunks on the baking sheet in one layer, toss to coat with oil, and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast for 30 minutes, or until squash is tender, turning the pieces occasionally so that they brown evenly. Set aside to cool slightly. Leave the oven on.
Caramelize onions: While the squash is roasting, melt the butter and the remaining tablespoon olive oil in a heavy skillet, and cook the onions over medium-low heat with the sugar and the remaining teaspoon of salt, stirring occasionally, until soft and tender, about 25 minutes. Stir in the cayenne pepper.
Mix the squash, caramelized onions, cheese, and herbs together in a bowl.
Assemble the galette: On a floured work surface, roll the dough out into a 16-to-17-inch round. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread the squash-and-cheese mixture over the dough, leaving a 2-to-2 1/2-inch border. Fold the border over the squash and cheese, pleating the edge to make it fit. The center will be open. Brush the outside of crust with the egg-yolk wash.
Bake: Bake until golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove the galette from the oven, let stand for 5 minutes, then slide onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges and serve hot, warm or at room temperature.
Comment » | Kristin's Kitchen
November 14th, 2013 — 5:31am
This week’s Slow Food UW Cafe Lunch featured a menu focused on root vegetables like parsnips, beets,
kholarabi, parsnips, and ginger. (correction: I’ve since learned that kholarbai and ginger are not root vegetables; they are stem vegetables). I chose the pickled beet sandwich with cream cheese and mixed greens on a house-made pesto bread with a side of roasted Brussels sprouts. I also tried the parsnip ginger soup and the rye chamomile cake with honey crisp. I liked the sandwich, although it could have used a bit more cream cheese. The Brussels sprouts were tasty, and the parsnip ginger soup had interesting flavor and a velvety texture. The cake was also solid—not too sweet, with a texture similar to cornbread. But the dish that everyone was ooing and awing over at my table is one I didn’t order—the Kohlrabi mash.
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