We’re working our way through all those peaches that we picked up last week, trying new recipes and eating fresh peaches left, right, and center. Today, we’re going to fall back on that standard of using fresh fruit and pie crust, and whip up a dessert. Now, we really got the idea from a recipe in Under the Tuscan Sun, by Francis Mayes, but we’ll have to say that it bears little resemblance to the original. We figured that since we’re the ones who’ll be eating it, we might as well make it our own; we fully expect you scratchers out there to do the same to our recipe.
The original recipe called for sugar, mascarpone cheese, and no herbs; it would have been good, but we humbly submit that our recipe results in a better galette. If you doubt us, try them both and report back.
If you can, use local honey. Honey bees are not doing well, so anything you can do to help them out…. For the goat cheese, we used the fresh cheese produced by Black Mesa Ranch. It’s not goat-y tasting, and they send it down to the CSA, where we pick it up as part of our weekly share. Plus, they take great care of their goats, so what’s not to like? Peaches: well, get freshly-picked peaches, or just move on to another recipe.
Procedure in detail:
Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment. We actually rolled out our crust right on the baking mat and lifted it all onto the baking pan; you can do the same.
Make cheese filling. In a medium bowl, combine the cheese, honey, almond extract, and thyme. Mash it all together — most likely it’ll still be dry and crumbly — so you’ll need to add some additional dairy. We used buttermilk, but milk would work, as would half-and-half, or cream. Since we don’t know how crumbly your cheese is, we can’t tell you how much to add. We added the buttermilk about a tablespoon at a time, mixing to check consistency. When you have a smooth paste, you’ve added enough.
Peel and slice peaches. Since it’s a small amount of peaches, we just peel with a paring knife. It’s faster than using the boiling/ice water treatment. Once peeled, slice into pieces about 1/4 inch thick, add to the cheese mixture, and fold in.
Roll crust. As we said above, we rolled out our crust right on the silicone baking mat, even matching its size. Then we lifted the mat and all onto the baking sheet. But, you can roll it out however you want; just try to form a rough oval or rectangle about 11×16 inches.
Fill and fold up sides. Scoop the peach and cheese mixture into the center of the crust, leaving about 2 inches around the edge clear of filling. Fold this edge up and over the filling, sealing it in place. With a galette, it doesn’t have to look perfect; it can be more of a rustic tart, but you do want the edges sealed so the filling doesn’t leak all over the pan.
Bake. We had something else in the oven at the same time, so we’re not sure if that’s why our galette took so long, but we baked ours until it was nicely browned on the top and the crust was baked through. It took about 70 minutes, but we really suggest that you start checking it earlier. Don’t worry, the galette isn’t sensitive to drafts, like some cakes, so feel free to check every 10 minutes or so.
We had some of this galette while it was still slightly warm and it was really good. A nice peachy flavor, but with a tanginess from the goat cheese that cut the sweetness. It’s sort of like a thin peach cheesecake, with a nice crisp, buttery crust. With it being so easy to put together, this is a real five-star recipe.