Sunday, November 3, 2013

SKC: Butternut squash and caramelized onion galette

SKC: Butternut squash galetteWriteup on the same day as the baking, for once! (I've still got a backlog of 17 or so SKC posts from late summer/early I have no notes on most of those, you'd think they'd be quick to do.)

A little cold snap (well, cooler, anyway--most of my basil is still alive so we haven't gotten to freezing yet) has me overdosing on winter vegetables and comfort-type food. I've bought the parsnips and carrots for a third making of the SKC Honey and harissa farro salad, picked up lots of kale some of which ended up in the wild rice gratin, some sort of different winter squash I didn't note the name of that got simply baked and eaten with salt and pepper, and a butternut squash. This recipe turns out to be a great vehicle for butternut squash, though it does take a while to put all the pieces together. I decided on a half recipe, knowing that at most 4 of us would eat it (me, sister-in-law, younger niece, and perhaps the nephew). The full-sized version is supposed to serve 8.

Here's the process: the squash itself is cubed and oven-roasted. Thinly sliced sweet onion is caramelized on the stove. Squash and onion get mixed together and cooled (and in my case, refrigerated for a day and a half), then mixed with grated fontina and some fresh thyme. The crust uses sour cream and a little white wine vinegar for tenderness, and a little whole wheat flour is suggested as an option. I forgot to do that (shouldn't try to make pastry in the morning before having all my coffee), so I used whole-wheat flour to roll it out to try to imbue a little virtue. The crust seemed quite soft even after being refrigerated for most of the day, but it rolled out easily.

For the half recipe I rolled the dough to about 12 inches, piled the squash mixture in the middle, then folded up and pleated the sides. It baked for 35 minutes (same time as the full-size recipe calls for, as really it's about baking the pastry) and came out golden brown and beautiful, if leaking a little liquid. Maybe the squash suffered a little from the almost 2-day hold in the fridge?

Results: it's lovely. The crust was flakey and tasty (and no soggy bottom despite the liquid that baked out), and the squash-onion-cheese filling is a great combination. Nephew even ate most of a piece, though he removed some of the squash, preferring the onion, cheese, and crust. We may repeat this one over Thanksgiving or Christmas as an entree or a side. The half recipe was a good decision when using this as a side dish--there's almost half of it left over.