The Perfect Peach Galette from The Baking Bible did turn out to be almost perfect. I may not be a fan of cooked stone fruit in general, but if you really have to cook it, one of the best ways is to sandwich it between two thin flaky bits of pastry. It made a relatively light but luscious dessert (or a naughty breakfast if you want to take some early morning photos) served with cream.
Everything seemed to be fairly easy with this pie; once I'd sourced some peaches out-of-season and managed to roll the pastry out thinly, it all seemed to fall into place (but not onto the bench - check out my fellow Alpha Baker Jeniffer for a sad story about a galette). The galette is a great way to cook a sweet or savoury pie and I'll be making this again. I think it would also be nice with a thin layer of custard or almond cream under the fruit.
Peaches are not in season in Australia at the moment. Although, living in tropical Australia technically they're never in season and always have to come from somewhere else. In the Australian summer they come from South Australia and Victoria but, being winter, these peaches are from much further afield, transported all the way from the US. The problem with these peaches is really the same as any trucked in, that is they are picked when green. Even if they do ripen they're never as good as fruit left to ripen more on the tree.
That being said, a bath of sugar and lemon can do wonders for imperfectly ripened fruit. I used a mix of white and yellow peaches, more from lack of attention when shopping rather than by design. It did make a nice mix of colours in the pie. I didn't add the suggested almond essence because I was afraid it would dominate the flavour. I was hard pressed not to eat these straight out of the bowl and there may have been a few less than when I started...
I love the colours of peaches.
I must have been feeling frisky because I made this pastry by hand. I've been not-so-secretly envious of the flaky-looking pastry other Alpha Bakers have produced for our pie projects so I thought I'd see if making it by hand got better results. I do tend to be too gung-ho with the food processor and always go well past the 'large pea size' bits of butter the recipe calls for.
This time I rubbed the cream cheese into the flour by hand and then the butter. This left largish flakes of fat through the pastry which is what we are aiming for. I was pretty pleased with myself.
Things continued to go well when I rolled the pastry after its rest in the fridge. I was able to roll it out very thinly with only a little bit of patching at the side. I cut it to fit my pizza pan, intending to have an open pie.
I had a little bit of pastry left over so I made myself a cook's treat. It was good practice to try out the pastry folding,
It was also good to test out how the pastry baked...and tasted. mmmmmmmm
The big pastry round had a long rest in the fridge both before and after filling. I didnt use any cornflour in the filling and I didn't cook the peach juices very long so they didn't thicken very much. But I didn't get that much juice off the peaches so it didn't make the filling too wet.
My pastry folds were a bit lopsided but I think of galettes as rustic so no problem. It baked nicely in the allotted time and looked pretty luscious when it came out of the oven.
The pastry was pretty delicate the first day I cooked it. By the next morning it had firmed up a bit and was easier to move around and cut. It was thin and sophisticated looking (like you imagine a Parisian to be) and pretty delicious with some cream.
And the pastry? Well it looked pretty flaky! It was crisp and cooked all the way through. Now to see if I can replicate the results using the food processor using a bit less of a lead foot on the pulse button.
Next week we're baking Woody's Black and White Brownies.