Autumn Galette

Craving the essence of pie, but desiring a more laissez-faire approach? Then the galette is your best friend. It incorporates the crispy, flakey outer shell of a pie as well as its flavourful inside, but in a more casual and rustic manner.

Instead of being confined to a pie pan with neat edges and latticework crowns, a galette is a simple sheet of pastry with filling arranged in its centre and edges haphazardly folded in. Same essence — simpler execution.

Like a pie, a galette can be made either savoury or sweet. With the season change official, temperature change already in motion, and autumnal produce imminent, we channel the flavours of fall for this simple and savoury pastry offering.

The true food of fall is unquestionably the squash. Butternut, hubbard, acorn, or sweet dumpling, they are as artful as they are delicious. And what’s better, their incredible shelf life (up to a year if stored properly) allows them to be a decorative accent that can last the season.

Here we have combined the delicate acorn squash with roasted onion, hearty mushrooms, sage, and blue cheese to highlight this time of transition. Each flavour shows fortitude on its own, but their strength works as complementary pillars in this overall dish.

If blue cheese is something that is adverse to your palate, try substituting for a goat cheese or even feta.

(Serves 4)

Ingredients

Dough

1 ¼ cups (300 ml) of all purpose flour (plus more for dusting)

1 teaspoon of salt

½ cup (125 ml) of chilled unsalted butter cut into 1 cm cubes

1 egg

1/3 cup (75 ml) of chilled water

1 tablespoon (15 ml) of white vinegar

Filling

1 acorn squash

½ of a white onion

1 teaspoon (5 ml) of winter savoury

1 cup (250 ml) of black oyster mushrooms

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons of olive oil, divided

2 teaspoons (10 ml) of salt, divided

1 tablespoon (15 ml) of honey mustard

2 tablespoons (30 ml) of fresh sage, chopped

2 ounces (55G) of blue cheese, crumbled

Egg wash

1 egg

2 tablespoons (30 ml) water

1 teaspoon of dried or fresh chopped rosemary

1 teaspoon of Maldon salt, or any fine finishing salt

Method

Sift the flour and salt together in a large bowl.

Incorporate the chilled butter using fingers or pastry blender. At this stage, it’s important not to overwork the butter. The mixture should be mealy with some generous lumps of butter remaining.

Whisk the eggs, chilled water, and vinegar together and add to the flour-butter mixture, mixing sparingly with a large fork until just combined. At this point, the mixture will look uneven. On a lightly floured surface, turn out the mixture and knead gently about five times until the mixture just comes together. Form into a ball and wrap tightly with plastic wrap.

Chill in the refrigerator for at least one hour, up to four hours.

Meanwhile, prepare the filling.

Preheat the oven to 400F.

Using a large and sharp knife, carefully cut the acorn squash horizontally into ½ inch rounds. Trim the skin and remove the seeds and place in a large bowl.

Cut the onion into eight even wedges and place in the bowl with the squash. Drizzle the squash and onion with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of salt and the winter savoury, and toss to coat evenly.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment and evenly layer the squash and onion on it and roast in the oven for 20-25 minutes – until softened, but not fully cooked.

Meanwhile, cook the mushroom. Set a large sauté pan over medium high heat. Once the pan is hot, add the remaining 1-tablespoon of olive oil and then add the mushrooms. Cook for 1 minute, until softened, then add the chopped garlic and remaining 1 teaspoon of salt. Continue to cook and stir until the mushrooms are fully cooked, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

Remove the squash and onions from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Leave the oven on at 400F.

Prepare the dough for assembly. Lightly flour your work surface and turn out the dough on it. Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough to a 12-inch rough circle. Transfer the dough to a parchment lined baking sheet.

In the middle of the dough, spread the honey mustard and arrange the fresh sage evenly atop the mustard.

Starting with the squash, arrange in the centre, in a circle, leaving a 2-inch lip of dough around the edges. Atop the squash, place the onions and mushrooms. Gently fold the edges of the dough towards the centre, leaving the middle exposed.

In a small bowl, whisk the egg and water together. Generously brush the exposed pastry with the egg wash and sprinkle with the rosemary and finishing salt.

Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes, until golden, but not quite crisp. Remove from the oven and place the crumbled blue cheese on the exposed centre of the galette. Return to the oven and let cook for another 5-10 minutes, until crisp.

Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes. Slice and enjoy!

Camille Llosa
Camille Llosa is a freelance writer and editor who is food-obsessed. She holds a degree in Print Journalism from Sheridan College and her work focuses on finding the connections between our everyday common experiences and how they can impact our life, wellbeing, perception, and purpose.