What the heck is a galette? You’ve come to the right place.
My first introduction to the word “galette” was in France, where it’s often preceded by the word “Breton.” A Breton galette is a buckwheat-based savory crepe, rather than the sweet wheat-flour ones that usually come to mind. But, it turns out the definition of “galette” on its own is much broader: “A flat round cake of pastry often topped with fruit,” is how Merriam Webster describes it. I think that definition is accurate, but sorely lacking in adjectives.
A galette is a beautiful, buttery, flaky blanket of pastry wrapped around a luxurious and indulgent collection of fruits, vegetables and, hopefully, some type of dairy component. It can be made sweet or savory and served as a hors d’oeuvres, main dish or dessert for any meal. It is quite limitless and always delicious. It should be the star of your holiday cooking and baking this year since it is, truthfully, the two in one.
In the midst of all the quarantine baking earlier this year, the galette somehow managed to rise to the (near) top, only really competing with sourdough. It’s been featured by NYT Cooking, Bon Appétit and more.
The galette in all its glory was called to my attention when first featured by my favorite food influencer Dan Pelosi, aka @grossypelosi on Instagram. Pelosi is an Italian-American Brooklynite who loves to share his family’s classic recipes while also inventing his own. Sometime late this summer he posted about an heirloom tomato and feta galette he threw together using former Bon Appétit test kitchen connoisseur Carla Lalli Music’s dough. When I saw that beautiful half-pie, half-pizza he had created, I had to try it for myself.
So, I made my way to Culture Counter in hopes of tracking down some heirloom tomatoes. I wound up with a package of Terrell Creek Farm's goat cheese, some fresh rosemary, one bulb of garlic and the last three tomatoes on the shelf. Even with the end-of-season tomatoes I took home, these ingredients came together on top of my dough to create the freshest, most delicious, most gorgeous thing I think I’ve ever made. Unfortunately, tomato season is long gone, so for a holiday treat I riffed off the French classics and made this goat cheese, potato and leek galette.
The beauty of this dish is that it is imperfect. It is supposed to look rough and rustic, so let it! The most important thing is flavor, and this galette brings it.