This feature is sponsored by KitchenAid, who is letting us play every day in the TasteSpotting kitchen with a stand mixer and a full suite of stand mixer attachments.
I’ve never understood the phrase, “Easy as pie.”
Pies aren’t easy. Or — more accurately — pie crusts aren’t easy.
First, there’s the question of butter vs. shortening. Should the crust be made with one, the other, a combination of both? And if one does make it with both, what should the proportions be? More butter than shortening? More shortening than butter?
It’s maddening, I tell you, maddening!
Then, when it’s time to actually make the crust, one must work as quickly as possible lest the butter or shortening or butter/shortening combination become too warm prior to baking, a hazard that can potentially compromise the crust’s ability to be flaky and tender and “just like Grandma made.”
Finally, there’s the issue of type of crust. Should it be a double crust? A single crust? A lattice top crust?
“Easy as pie,” my bum.
The phrase should really be amended to reference something that actually is easy. Like “Easy as eating too much chocolate.” Or “Easy as watching Patrick Dempsey on ‘Grey’s Anatomy.’”
Or “Easy as making a galette with a KitchenAid® stand mixer.”
A galette, or free-form pie or tart, doesn’t sound easy. It sounds French. And scary. Like something only women of the Julia Childs’ persuasion would be able to make sans frustration.
But galettes aren’t scary. They are forgiving, readily adaptable to seasonal ingredients and a cinch to make with the right equipment.
While a galette still requires a crust, the process of constructing it feels decidedly simpler (and less maddening) with a stand mixer. A cup and a fourth of flour is dumped into the mixing bowl. Chunks of butter follow. A mere 30-45 seconds of stirring with the paddle attachment creates pea-sized crumbs that are begging for the water that will be added next. Another minute later – pie dough. Wham, bam, thank you, KitchenAid ma’am.
After 15 minutes of cooling time in the fridge, the dough is no longer a foe for a rolling pin. It stretches across the countertop like an impossibly flexible yoga instructor. The resulting 13-inch diameter circle is just as flexible with its destiny. Today it will filled with Farmer’s Market fresh yellow peaches and blueberries topped with a crumbly brown sugar topping (again, made courtesy of the KitchenAid ma’am). Tomorrow it could be lovingly wrapped around caramelized onions, figs and bleu cheese. In the fall, it might hug the curves of sliced Granny Smith apples.
Galettes aren’t fussy about stuff like that.
And this galette, this sweet, rustic peach and blueberry galette, isn’t fussy either. It only looks fussy. And tastes fussy with its pliant crust and molten fruit center. And makes me fussy when I finish off my piece and realize I can’t stop myself from having another.
And better than what grandma made.
Peach and Blueberry Galette
Adapted from KitchenAid recipe for a Rustic Apple Tart
1 unbaked (9-inch) pie crust
4 ripe yellow peaches, peeled and sliced
1 ½ cups blueberries
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/3 cup light brown sugar
½ cup flour
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ cup (½ stick) butter, softened
Toss together peaches, blueberries, lemon, and granulated sugar. Set aside.
Place all remaining ingredients except pie crust in mixer bowl. Attach bowl and flat beater to mixer. Turn to Speed 2 and mix until crumbly. Set aside.
Roll out pastry into a 13-inch circle. Transfer to baking sheet (it’s ok if pastry hangs over edge of baking sheet).
Gently mound peaches and blueberries in the center of pastry, leaving a 2-inch border of dough on all sides. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar mixture (may only need to use half). Fold pastry up over filling, pleated as necessary to fit snugly around fruit. Gently press dough to filling, reinforcing shape.
Bake at 400 degrees until pastry is golden brown and fruit has begun to solidify, about 40-45 minutes. Cool galette on baking sheet on wire rack for 10 minutes. Serve warm.
Pie Crust Recipe
1¼ cups all-purpose flour
8 ounces cold unsalted butter
1/3 cup water
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
Place flour in mixer bowl. Cut the butter into pieces and add to the flour. Put the bowl into the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes so the butter can firm up again.
In a small bowl, combine the water, vinegar and salt. Place that in the refrigerator, as well.
Affix the chilled bowl to the mixer and attach the flat beater. Turn to Stir Speed and mix until the butter particles are the size of small peas (approximately 30 to 45 seconds).
Continuing on Stir Speed, add the cold water/vinegar/salt mixture 1 tablespoon at a time, until ingredients are moistened and dough begins to hold together. Pat dough into a smooth ball and flatten slighting. Wrap in plastic wrap. Chill in refrigerator 15 minutes.
Things We Used to Bake Peach and Blueberry Galette:
- KitchenAid Artisan 5-Quart Stand Mixer
- KitchenAid Stand Mixer Flat Beater Attachment (comes standard with mixer)
- large baking sheet