Spring may be [finally] in the air, but piles of root vegetables, winter greens, and Brussels sprouts still fill the farmers market. And while I pine for the colors and freshness of Spring produce, I'm also trying to appreciate the hearty, earthy flavors of Winter before they're gone. Keeping this in mind last Saturday, I piled my bag high with handfuls of Brussels sprouts, thinking all the while of how I could add some variety to the seemingly unending monotony of Winter meals.
A galette seemed the perfect compromise - something simple and unassuming, yet different enough to mix things up a bit. I had never made a Brussels sprouts galette before (nor seen or tried one), but assured myself that I couldn't go wrong as really anything would taste delicious enveloped in a buttery pie crust. I sauteed onion slices with fresh thyme and balsamic vinegar until they were deeply caramelized, collapsing into a sweet, fragrant relish, which I smeared over the butter-studded dough. To accentuate, but not overpower their delicate flavor, I tossed the Brussels sprouts with simple flavors - fruity extra virgin olive oil, tart lemon juice, and a touch of raw garlic - and piled them high before folding the dough in around the edges.
The galette emerged from the oven in a puff of steam -- golden brown and bubbling. While I waited for it to cool, I added crumbles of freshly made ricotta as a creamy and fresh contrast to the galette's otherwise deep, rich flavors. And, to balance everything -- a drizzle of honey and a sprinkling of flaked sea salt.
I cut two pieces and Henry and I took our first bite as we stood at the kitchen counter -- the smells too overwhelming for us to deny ourselves a second longer. With full mouths, we turned to each other -- and laughed.
brussels sprouts galette
This galette is a culmination of so many contrasting flavors and textures -- sweet and savory, buttery and bright, creamy and crispy -- it really hits every note. Serve it alongside scrambled eggs for a lovely Winter brunch, or with some simply dressed greens for a light dinner. It is delicious as leftovers as well - just reheat in a warm oven.
for the galette:
pastry dough [recipe below]
1 yellow onion, sliced
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, minced
12 ounces brussels sprouts
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt + more to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/4 cup of ricotta or farmer's cheese, for garnish
drizzle of honey, for garnish
Make pastry dough [recipe below], and refrigerate. While dough is chilling, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat. Add the onions and a pinch of salt and cook, stirring occasionally for 15-20 minutes. Reduce heat to low, add sugar, balsamic vinegar, and thyme. Stir, and allow vinegar to deglaze the pan. Cover, and cook for an additional 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are deeply caramelized. Remove from heat and set aside.
Meanwhile, prepare the brussels sprouts: clean, remove any tough outer leaves, and slice into 1/4-inch pieces. Transfer to a large bowl and toss with remaining 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, minced garlic clove, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
On a floured board, roll dough into a large circle - approximately 13-14 inches in diameter. Transfer to a silpat or parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread caramelized onions evenly over the dough, leaving a 3-inch border around the edge of the circle. Spread brussels sprouts over the onions.
Working around the circle, fold border of dough up over the edges of the brussels sprouts, sealing everything in around the edges, but leaving most of the brussels sprouts exposed.
In a small bowl, whip the egg with a splash of water to create an egg wash. Brush the egg wash evenly over the top of the exposed dough.
Transfer to the preheated oven and bake until dough is golden brown, about 40 minutes.
Remove galette from oven, and top with crumbles of ricotta or farmer's cheese and a drizzle of honey. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes before cutting and serving. Enjoy!
for the pastry dough: [recipe slightly adapted from happy yolks]
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon sugar
pinch of salt
12 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons ice water
In a bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Using a pastry cutter or your fingers, cut in half of the butter until small pieces are incorporated throughout (the mixture will be the consistency of coarse meal). Cut in the remaining butter. Pour in water and knead dough with your hands until the dough is smooth, and no longer sticky. Flatten into a disc, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.