Thursday, November 17, 2011

Sweet Victory

I think anyone that has a passion for cooking and all things food also has their own Achilles Heel. Mine, has always been pie pastry. That is not to say that I did not have success from time to time, but it was never something that I could hope for much less count on. I like having ‘home-runs’ in my cooking arsenal, so a wild card like pastry had no place. I guess many people would just opt to purchase prepared pie pastry and call it a day, but I like to know that what I make has mostly come from my own blood, sweat and swears. Shortcuts are nice, but I feel like a poser and just want to go take a shower. However, I just could not let it go…I was capable of so many things; I should be able to work this out. I sat down with Rose Levy Beranbaum’s, Pie and Pastry Bible to find enlightenment and perhaps some big pastry secret I had missed. Although it is one of the best reference cookbooks out there, I just wasn’t getting what I needed.

Then as I was checking out my friends' Facebook status updates, I saw that Garrett, a local food blogger, placed a post about a Potato and Onion Galette. Normally, I would have read through the post and admired his pastry (secretly hating his ability to do something I can’t) but he caught my attention when he explained that he had become quite skilled with pastry thanks to Elise Bauer, another local food blogger. He provided a link to her recipe (which I had the pleasure of tasting first-hand when she brought a pie to a party) and I followed it; WORD for WORD. And it work. And it worked again. And it continues to work EVERY TIME I prepare it. I have used it for sweet and savory; simple and complex. Finally, I have bested this beast and I am no longer apprehensive about having a pastry item in my cooking arsenal. One of my favorite things to prepare with my “oh so reliable pastry” is a Nutella Galette.

Nutella Galette

Preheat oven to 375

v One prepared pastry using Elise’s recipe

v 1/3 cup of Nutella Spread plus additional for drizzling


v Almond Extract

v ¼ cup of high quality bittersweet chocolate chunks

v ¼ cup of chopped toasted hazelnuts or almonds

Use an inverted sheet pan and cover with parchment paper.

Roll out to a 12 inch diameter, about 1/8 inch thick on a lightly floured surface leaving a 1 ½-2 inch border. Place dough on parchment paper

Spread the 1/3 cup of Nutella and toss the chocolate chunks and hazelnuts/almonds over.

In a bowl, mix 3 TB of the additional Nutella and 2-3 TB of milk until you have a syrup consistency. Add 1-2 drops of the almond extract.

Drizzle over the Nutella, chocolate and nuts and then fold over the border slightly over the filling to create a crust.

Bake for 20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

No comments: