While I appreciate the finer details of making pastry, I leave those to the experts. When I cook at home, I want dessert to look and taste fabulous – but it also must be easy to throw together. As a rule, if it can be described as "rustic," it is right up my alley.
A galette, which is essentially an open-faced, seasonal fruit pie, is the ultimate showcase of how good that can be. You don't have to concern yourself with decorative precision, because imperfection adds to a galette's appeal. There is no pie plate needed to contain it into a round because it is formed and baked right on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Galettes also are inherently better for you than a typical double-crust fruit pie because they involve just one pastry enveloping a bounty of seasonal fruit, rather than a top and a bottom.
This recipe takes the health of the crust further – without giving up any tender, flaky texture – by using whole-grain pastry flour that lends a subtly earthy flavor and soft texture. Olive oil stands in for some of the usual butter. The fresh berry filling is sweetened just enough with honey to punctuate the inherent sweetness of the fruit, and a splash of balsamic vinegar adds a deep, jammy flavor dimension.
All in all, it's a fuss-free way to turn the season's wealth of berries into a splendid summer dessert.
• Ellie Krieger is a registered dietitian, nutritionist and author who hosts public television's "Ellie's Real Good Food." She blogs and offers a weekly newsletter at www.elliekrieger.com.
Mixed Berry Galette
A galette is essentially a rustic, open-faced seasonal fruit pie – and it is inherently better for you than a typical double-crust fruit pie because it involves a single layer of pastry that envelopes the fruit.
This recipe takes the health of it a step further with tender whole-grain pastry flour and olive oil in the crust. The fruit is lightly sweetened with honey and given a deep, jammy flavor dimension with a splash of balsamic vinegar.
Make ahead: The galette dough needs to be refrigerated for at least 1 hour, and up to 2 days in advance.
– From nutritionist and cookbook author Ellie Krieger
1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/8 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup honey, or more as needed
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
3 tablespoons ice water
4 cups mixed berries, cut as needed (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
Combine the flour and salt in a food processor; pulse to blend. Stop to drizzle in the oil and 1 tablespoon of the honey, then add the butter and pulse, about 12 times, until the butter is the size of small pebbles. Add the ice water; pulse 3 to 5 times, just until incorporated.
Lay one large piece of wax paper or parchment paper on the counter. Transfer the dough there, then cover with a second piece of paper. Roll (on top of the paper) to create a 9-inch round of dough that is even in thickness. Slide the papered dough onto a baking sheet and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days in advance.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone liner.
Combine the berries with the remaining 3 tablespoons of honey (or more as needed, depending on the sweetness of the berries) and the vinegar in a mixing bowl. Sprinkle with the cornstarch and toss until evenly coated.
Carefully remove and discard the top piece of wax paper or parchment from the chilled round of dough. Carefully invert the dough onto the prepared baking sheet, then remove the remaining piece of paper (stuck to the dough). If the dough cracks, use your fingers to patch it up.
Mound the berry mixture at the center of the dough round, leaving a 2-inch margin around the edges. Fold that border of dough toward the center of the filling; it will cover the filling only partially and does not need to be even all the way around. Bake (middle rack) for 10 minutes, and then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
Bake for an additional 30 minutes, until the berries are tender and the crust is golden brown.
Cool completely on the baking sheet before cutting into wedges.
• Nutrition per serving: 260 calories, 3 g protein, 39 g carbohydrates, 11 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 20 mg cholesterol, 50 mg sodium, 6 g dietary fiber, 17 g sugar