Tuesday, July 31, 2012

ABC: Glazed Apricot-Plum Galette

I don't normally see fresh apricots being sold in our supermarkets over here even during peak season so I was all set to turn Abby Dodge's Glazed Apricot-Plum Galette from her book The Weekend Baker into a peach- or nectarine-plum galette instead.  It was such a lucky coincidence though that as I was scouring the shelves for fresh fruits a few weeks ago, our supermarket, to my delight, had an abundant display of very fresh apricots that I couldn't resist buying some right then and there.  Even the plums were rather plentiful so by the time I got home, I had all of the fruits needed to make the galette which is also ABC's recipe for the month of August.  I was a little unsure of how well these fruits would keep in the fridge so I decided to make the galette a few weeks in advance.

Abby described this galette as a less-intimidating "beginner pie" and she couldn't be more right.  Because of its free-form shape, only a little effort is required to form the pie after rolling and I love the fact that there's no pressure to neatly crimp the edges of the crust in a fanciful way like you would do a normal pie baked in a pie plate.  In fact, I think this pie is meant to look rustic and it also looks rather charming and appetizing with its irregular folds and asymmetrical opening.  

Super flaky crust!!
I deviated from the recipe a little bit by making 2 smaller galettes, omitting the flour and grated ginger in the filling and by using a different method to make the crust although I followed the exact proportions of the recipe.  I was inspired to try out the technique used for the galette crust in the book "Tartine" which is basically a variation of the fraisage method but instead of using the palms of your hands to smear the butter on the surface after all the dry and liquid ingredients are cut together (by hand or the food processor), you pound and roll all of the cubed butter using a pin in between layers of flour/dry ingredients before adding the liquid.  Then once all of the butter is rolled flat, you add the liquid and cut the shaggy mass of dough with a bench scraper until everything comes together.  The dough is then strengthened further by a series of business letter folds and rolls with the pin.  It sounds more work than what Abby's recipe instructed but I think all of my efforts paid off as I got the flakiest pie crust I ever made in my life!  Granted, I've only made a few pies in my years of baking, but learning this technique was exactly what I needed in order to overcome all my pie-making fears and jump on a pie recipe with confidence.  

When I saw all the juices seep out of the galette during the bake, I immediately regretted omitting the flour.  I just didn't want to add an ingredient that I thought at that time would end up making the filling taste starchy and rob the fruits off of their natural sweetness.  Hanaa mentioned a very good technique to me that could help prevent the juices from overflowing and it's to cook all the juices (only the juices) beforehand until you reach a thick/syrupy consistency.  I wish I had known about this before making the galette but I'm definitely doing this step on my next fruit-based pie. 

As I've mentioned before, I'm pretty satisfied with the outcome of the crust but the fruit filling was a little lacking in sweetness for me.  I think the amount of sugar added to the filling should depend on the sweetness of the fruits themselves.  My apricots were sweet but my plums weren't as ripe and even had a slight bitter aftertaste so I think I could've added a little more sugar to bring it to the level of sweetness that I like.   

If you would like to join ABC or just check out this month's take of my fellow ABC bakers, head on over to the ABC blog!  


  1. Wow, your crust is so flaky, the closeup almost looks like puff pastry. Great job! I love the colors of your fruity filling too. My fruit wasn't sweet enough for my taste either. Will taste it and adjust the sugar accordingly next time.

  2. picture perfect! Flaky and wonderful looking. If you ever do your method again..I would love to see a step by step! The smashing and folding is a tad confusing for the visual person that I am.

  3. Your galette looks wonderful - and I'm relieved that you had the same issue with juices escaping. I assure you, the three tablespoons of flour do not prevent that from happening.
    After baking mine I looked at other recipes, showing that "smear technique", too, and was wondering whether that would have prevented the cracks in the crust and the juice flow. I see now that it doesn't, and Abby Dodges method is so easy to use.

  4. Oh my goodness - that looks so delicious and very pretty too. The escaping juices just make it look more homemade and rustic and I bet it caramelized the bottom crust. Gorgeous!

  5. your galette looks beautiful and i like your flaky crust! Mine was sweet as I've used ripe mangoes, could not get any plums! I like the gorgeous colour of the your plums galette!

  6. Yummy! Looks tasty. I love that flaky crust! Great job

  7. That flaky crust is just super perfect! Love the golden colour on the crust too. I had that juice overflow too, I think I'll use some flour/cornstarch in the fruits to prevent that a little. Great looking galette!

  8. You've probably figured out by now that your crust is making our mouths water. I am going to run right out and buy some fruit to try this on account of that pastry crust pic!

  9. Janis, I just found a long discussion in Cook's Illustrated about the leak problem of free form pies. Obviously you nailed it with your variation of the fraisage technique.
    It appears that fraisage is the best way to prevent leaks, by creating long, thin streaks of butter between layers of flour and water, resulting in a sturdier, but very flaky crust. I updated my post accordingly.