Friday, May 16, 2008
I love my pastry board, it’s beautiful. Michelangelo’s David and my pastry board are both made of Carrara marble. But my pastry board is functional, too.
I got my pastry board custom made. The ones they sell at cookware shops are just too small to work on comfortably. A marble fabricator made mine for me from a remnant, for cheap.
My pastry board is about two by three feet, plenty big for rolling out dough. And it stays cool on hot days, keeping even the most delicate pastry doughs chilled and workable.
I use my pastry board for making pasta, breads, tarts, and these apple galettes.
Apple Galettes with Hazelnut Crust
1/3 cup hazelnuts
2 tablespoons sugar
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
½ teaspoon kosher salt
13 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks plus 1 tablespoon) cold unsalted butter, diced
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons, or more, cold water
2 tablespoons Turbinado sugar
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
4 Golden Delicious apples
1 tablespoon heavy cream
Combine the hazelnuts and sugar in a food processor and pulse until finely ground.
Add the flour and salt and pulse a few more times to combine. Add 12 tablespoons of the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Add the water and pulse until the dough just comes together.
Test the dough by squeezing a small amount together with your fingertips. If the dough holds together, it’s ready. If it’s crumbly, add up to 1 more tablespoon of water and pulse 2 more times. Transfer the dough to a work surface, bring together into a ball, and cut into eighths. Form each portion into a ball and then flatten into a disc. Wrap each disc separately in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about half an hour.
Preheat the oven to 425ºF. On a lightly floured surface, roll out each disc of dough to a 7-inch wide, 1/8-inch thick circle.
As you work, transfer the circles to parchment-lined baking trays. Refrigerate for about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine the Turbinado sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Peel, halve, and core the apples and slice them 3/16-inch thick.
Using half an apple for each galette, arrange the apple slices in a decorative pattern in the center of each dough circle, leaving a 1-inch border at the edge.
Fold the edge of the dough over the apples, pleating it as you go.
Refrigerate for another 10 minutes.
Lightly brush the galette crusts with the cream. Sprinkle the galettes with the Turbinado sugar mixture and dot with the remaining tablespoon of butter. Bake for 17 to 19 minutes, or until golden brown.
Makes 8 individual galettes. Work quickly and with a light touch to prevent the butter in the pastry from melting. Feel free to substitute almonds or pecans for the hazelnuts or ripe but still firm peaches for the apples. So many possibilities! Serve warm, perhaps with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.