Keep calm and eat your veggies.

by kaitlin

I was going to title this post “Keep calm and have a cupcake”, but I somehow forgot to take pictures of the chocolate-cardamom-nutella cupcakes. I haven’t been baking enough during the daytime, and natural light being essential to decent photos, you’ll just have to wait until the sun stay up later in the day for more frequent baking photos. Which, is also why you’re getting an Instagram photo, for now.

The past week has been a panic-and-freak-out sort of week: I busted my butt to get to Toronto, to interview for a pretty incredible job opportunity, which ended up not working out, despite my best hopes. I’m taking it in stride, but it’s still stressful. Also stressful was the travel: Freezing rain made for delays there and cancellations on the way home. I was pretty happy to have a roof over my head on Thursday night and Via Comfort Class on Friday morning. Oh, also on Thursday, I got an e-mail from Urban Craft officially welcoming me as a vendor for February sale at GCTC. Yay! And then, this morning, my vendor information came.

And then, I was like “Whoa.” This just got real. Very, very real.

This is going to be a huge learning curve for me. I recognize some of the other vendors, like michaelsdolce – a phenomenal company who I mostly know for their preserves – and Pascale’s (Ottawa’s Queen of Ice Cream). Yeah, I’m a bit panicked at the moment. Partly, out of the scope of it all and partly because I want this to be a great big success, and successes are scary, hard, challenging things. I’ll try to blog about the challenging things the best that I can. The trouble is, the challenging things tend to bring me back to the kitchen, to explore a favourite recipe, or make something that doesn’t need a recipe at all, like this galette.

Galette is a general term used to refer to a flat, free-form cake or pastry; in the savoury sense, it often is specific to a buckwheat flour pancake, sold by creperies, filled with savoury fillings. Alyson (of Unruly Things) and Deb (of Smitten Kitchen) jointly introduced me to the concept of a galette as something that wasn’t necessarily made with buckwheat flour. Think of it as a free-form pie, and you’ll be singing.

Pâte Brisée
Makes enough for 1 7-inch galette

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
3 to 4 tablespoons ice water

Combine flour and butter in your food processor; pulse 6 to 8 times, until mixture resembles coarse meal, with pea-sized pieces of butter. Add ice water 1 Tbsp at a time, pulsing until mixture just begins to clump together. If you pinch some of the crumbly dough and it holds together, it’s ready. If the dough doesn’t hold together, add a little more water and pulse again. Too much water makes for a tough crust. Gently shape the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.

Savoury Swiss Galette (Swiss chard, carmelized onions & Swiss cheese galette)
Serves 4 as a main, with sides

1 recipe Pâte Brisée (above)
1 bunch swiss chard, cleaned stems removed, blanched and well-drained
1 medium yellow onion, carmelized in 2 tbsp olive oil.
1 tbsp fresh thyme, minced
1/2 cup grated Swiss cheese

Heat the oven to 400F.

Once your pâte brisée has chilled, roll it out on a floured surface (or on a Silipat) into a ten-inch round; don’t fret too much if it’s not perfect.

Leaving a three-inch border, layer the dough with the chard, then the onions, and finally the thyme. Fold the border into the middle and pinch it here and there so it has some form to it. Sprinkle the cheese on top. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the crust is golden. Allow the galette to cool for a few minutes before serving, lest you burn your tongue.

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