The following recipe highlights a wonderfully basic and quick technique that can be used for a large array of desserts. This recipe for galette dough has been one of my favorites since I first tried made it at one of my early baking gigs. We used this basic dough in the bakery year-round, swapping out the fillings seasonally for an entirely new dish. I adore the ease and ragged-edge appearance of galettes – truly the definition of no-frills, but yet elegant, seasonal baking.
Bourbon Peach Galette
Adapted from Chez Panisse Fruit
For the dough
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes and frozen
7 Tbs ice water
For the filling
1/4 cup ground almonds
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup biscotti (or other dry cookie), ground
4-5 large ripe peaches
1 Tb light brown sugar
1/4 cup good quality Bourbon
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 Tb apricot preserves, warmed slightly
1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar and salt and pulse 3 times to mix. Drop 4 Tbs of the butter into the processor and pulse until the dough resembles a coarse cornmeal. Add the remaining butter and pulse until the largest pieces of butter are the size of peas.
2. Slowly drizzle in the ice water, 1-2 tablespoons at a time, pulsing once after each addition. Check the mixture by gently pressing handfuls of the dough together. If the dough remains clumped, you have enough water, if not, dribble in a bit more. You want the dough to just hold together, with large chunks of butter remaining, but not formed completely into a ball.
3. Divide the dough in half, form halves into a ball and wrap each in plastic wrap, gently pressing each into a flattened disk. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, set a large pot of water on to boil. Prepare a bowl with ice water and using a small knife make a small X in the skin on the bottom of each peach. When the water begins to boil, drop in the peaches and allow to boil just until the skin at the X starts to come loose – 3-4 minutes. Remove the peaches from boiling water and dunk immediately in the ice bath. Once cool enough to touch, gently peel away the peach skin, starting at the X.
5. Thinly slice the peeled peaches and place them in a medium bowl with the Bourbon and brown sugar. Allow the peaches to marinate in the Bourbon mixture for 30-45 minutes at room temperature. Next, make the almond powder by combining the ground almonds, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup flour and 1/4 cup ground biscotti. Set aside.
6. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Remove the disk of dough from the refrigerator, unwrap and set on a piece of lightly floured parchment paper. Allow the dough to warm up slightly for a few minutes and then gently roll out into a circle, about 8 inches in diameter. Move the dough and parchment onto a sheet pan.
7. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of the almond powder onto the dough, leaving a 1 inch border of plain dough around the edges. Place the peaches on top of the powder in a fan arrangement around the dough and then gently fold in the one inch edges. Lightly brush the dough with the beaten egg and sprinkle the entire galette liberally with sugar.
8. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the galette is golden. While still warm, brush the peaches with apricot preserves to glaze and gently move the galette off the sheet pan and onto a cooling rack. Serve slices warm and with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.