Sunday, November 6, 2011

Hankering for a Pear Galette

So I did a little searching online. Part of my goal, too, was to use puff pastry from Trader Joe's idling in the freezer for the past month. Never baked with it before. Truthfully, was equally intimidated and intrigued and enticed by it. Odd, I know.

Anyhoo, I also longed to make something interesting with a bag of organic pears and assortment of other compatible ingredients.

My guys are both asleep, it's daylight savings evening . . . I gained an extra hour and I'm a night owl any way . . . therefore it only makes sense that I should savor that windfall of time with a little fall baking.

The recipe I chose to use as my base guide is from Woman with a Wisk blog. I admired her simple, unfussy approach to something that I've always wanted to try but never thought I'd be any good at.

That slight fear didn't deter me from kicking up the stakes a notch - inspired by a recipe for Pear-Ginger-Raisin Muffins in one of my all-time favorite cookbooks (really a bakebook), Once Upon a Tart.

I actually love (even crave) lots of ingredients in one thing (i.e. cakes, pies, sandwiches, pasta, etc.). I know many folks eschew that concept and prefer less to more. But, for my lusted-after galette, I was aiming to make an earthy, fall-like, rustic pastry that almost eats like a meal.

On I proceeded. Additional ingredients included in my creation are:

A light dusting of ground coriander; at least a teaspoon (probably 2 or more) of cinnamon; pinch of powdered giner; handful of organic raisins; and a smattering of tiny crumbled crystallized dried ginger bits mixed into the sliced organic pears.

I also sprinkled cinnamon along the folded edge of the galette (after I brushed with egg mixture), as, I am of the mind that, the more cinnamon the better.

Aside from above variations, I followed the Woman with a Wisk recipe exactly, making two galettes, since I had so many pears and two frozen puff pastry sheets.

One before baking:

And after:

Not bad for a first try*. And was relatively easy! The kid and hubby are going to love it! (In fact, would be a fun project to take on with my 4-year-old.) I'm enjoying a small sample tonight, complemented by a cup of 2-bag chai tea steeped with lots of cinnamon sticks: fall flavor explosion!

*Practical baking tip: my galettes turned out to be overly juicy/runny. To lessen that, I slit a little hole into the side of each one and carefully tipped it on its side over the sink to drain. I will be serving these in the morning and didn't want them to be soggy by then.

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