Friday, 6 September 2013

Galette with caramelized onions and feta

You know how before holiday it's oh, so easy to make all sorts of ambitious plans. Like, that this time you're really going to exercise moderation when it comes to both sangria, sun and cooking. And that you're going to broaden your cultural horizons by reading Nobel prize winning literature (Orhan Pamuk). And you're going to start every morning by swimming a kilometre. And you're even going to make the most of the time spent lounging by the pool and revise Arabic grammar. And then, before you know it, the holiday's over and you've not clocked in even 100 metres in the pool. And the only thing you can say in Arabic is still "no, unfortunately my sister is not married". And even that Nobel laureate has quietly been swapped for Hello- magazine. And you haven't even managed to take part in the food bloggers' monthly food challenge!

Last month the theme for Finnish food bloggers' monthly food challenge was pie. This is what we were supposed to enter into the contest. Galette is a rustic, free-form pie from France that is laid out directly onto the baking tray. It is extremely grateful and versatile in that you can fill it with just about anything. Sweet or savoury. The recipe for the base is from a book called Picnic hamper from Kitchen classic- series that I probably snapped up at the market in Arroyo. So far this base is the best thing to come out of it. Naturally you can substitute some of the flour with a more substantial and fiber-rich variety.

Today's filling consisted of caramelized onions with thyme from our own garden. Oh, and I continued my cheese aversion therapy - this time with feta. The saltiness of which along with the acidity of the olives worked beautifully with the rich sweetness of the onions. You could also use goat cheese.

As they cook and reduce, the flavour of the onions becomes incredibly sweet, as does the balsamico. If you want a bit of tanginess, don't add half (or all) of the balsamico until at the end of the cooking to preserve the edge.

The onions are so juicy in themselves that the you don't necessarily even need the cream-egg mixture on top. But in case you make the galette out of something else, you know, quiche style, it makes a good addition as it prevents the filling form drying out and improves the texture.

Serves 4-6

Caramelized onions:

5 onions 
2 tbsp butter
4 sprigs of thyme
2 tbsb balsamico

Peel the onions and cut into rings or slices of your desired thickness. Heat the oil in a pan and add onions, thyme and balsamico. bring the heat down and let simmer, covered, for 40-60 minutes. The juice form the onions along with butter and balsamico should be enough, but if they are in danger of burning, lower the heat and/or add a little bit of oil. Depending on the size of your onions this makes enough for up to two galettes, but any leftover onions are also good on bread, with cheese, on top of a hamburger...


2,5 dl all purpose flour
60 ml olive oil
1,5 tsp salt
60-80 ml water

Mix oil with the flour you've seasoned with salt. Using your fingers, tweak together to form a crumbly mixture. Then add water, little bit at a time until a soft, elastic dough forms. Pat into a disc, wrap tightly in cling film and let rest in the cold for about half an hour.


about 1/2 of the caramelized onions
handful of olives
handful of feta cheese
a couple of sprigs of thyme
(1/2 egg + 1/4 dl cream)

Preheat the oven to 200º (though my oven is so feisty 180º was enough). Leave the baking tray in the oven. Roll the pastry on lightly floured surface into a circle of a couple of millimetres thick (diameter of appr. 30 cm). This is easiest done between two sheets of parchment. Spread the onions on the bottom leaving about 5 cm border. Scatter the olives on top (cut into slices or use whole ones) and crumble feta on top. Sprinkle thyme on top. Fold the border on top of the filling folding each new portion overlapping the previous one (see photo) . Transfer onto the hot tray. Beat the egg lightly and add cream (the original recipe called for 1 egg and 60 ml cream but for me that was just too much). Pour on top of the galette and bake in the lower half of the oven until the filling has set and the crust is golden brown - 30-40 minutes. Let cool and serve with green salad.

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