Pluot & Almond Galette

Pluot & Almond Galette

Summer is all about seasonal cooking with the freshest ingredients (and laying by the pool too), so when I make a trip to the store I grab the produce that looks best and is in season, it automatically drives what I will make next. The same applies if I spot something fun and unique that I have never tasted before–my mom taught me to try everything at least once. Not too long ago I spotted pluots, a plum and apricot hybrid. A fruit that has the best of both and that is easy to bake with.

Being lazy after a long summer day laying by the pool, I do not always have the most energy to really make my baked goods pretty. Sometimes you just want the end result without all of the work. A galette is perfect for that baker.

A galette is essentially a free form pie, great for those of us that struggle with making our baked goods pretty. A bit more rustic, you simply roll out your pie crust, pour your filling in the middle, and fold the edges up and over. The center stays open allowing the sugar in the filling to cook down and get extra gooey.

For this recipe I use brown sugar instead of regular sugar; it adds a deeper flavor to the baked good

There are a few tricks to remember when making a pie crust because we all know they can be very tricky:

  • Make sure your butter is very cold, the same applies if you are using lard or shortening.
  • Use a pastry cutter, and if you do not have one use a large fork.
  • Do not overwork or your pastry will become tough.
  • Adding a bit of vinegar allows the glutens to relax, so your dough is not tough.
  • Always let your dough rest in the fridge at least 30 minutes before using.

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Pistachio Shortbread Cookies with Pluot Jam

Pistachio Shortbread Cookies with Pluot Jam

Rich, buttery, salty, crumbly….sometimes a fresh home baked shortbread cookie can be the best dessert out (well a classic chocolate chip cookie still may trump it).

It has been extremely difficult to push myself to post this week. My editor had me stretched a bit thin, writing three reviews in one week. And as a writer the last thing you want to do is force some half-hearted story. Needless to say, like most Sundays, most of my day has been spent recharging. My husband and I have created a small ritual in eating bad and binge watching shows every Sunday.

A bit of inspiration has come from one of our favorites, the Great British Bake-off. And if you have not watched it, you absolutely must. If like me, you have finished all of the seasons, there is also a Great Australian Bake-off. Yes, the Aussies have a version too! Their “bakes”, on the GBBO, are filled with jams, and most pair great with tea. These pistachio cookies would make Paul and Marry proud. Scrummie!

Pluot Jam

Ingredients:

  • 7 Pluots, quartered
  • 1 Cup of Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup of Sweet Red Wine
  • 2 Tablespoons of Balsamic Vinegar
  • Pinch of Salt

Directions:

  1. Combine all of the ingredients into a saucepan and heat over medium heat.
  2. Once bubbling, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for one hour or until reduced in half.
  3. Let cool before placing in sealable container(s). Can store in the fridge for up to one week, or freeze for 6 months.

Pistachio Shortbread Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 Stick of Butter, cold and cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 Cup of Sugar
  • 1 Cup of All Purpose Flour
  • Dash of Salt
  • 1 Cup of Pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 3 Tablespoons of Pistachio Oil

Directions:

  1. Combine sugar, flour, and salt in a medium bowl.
  2. With your fingers, mix the butter into the dry mixture. Mix until it resembles course sand.
  3. Pour in pistachios and oil, mix with spoon until fully incorporated.
  4. Cover bowl, and let rest in the fridge for at least one hour.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a cookie sheet pan, with edges on all four sides, mash down your cookie mixture creating one even layer.
  6. Bake until lightly golden brown, about 30 minutes.
  7. After removing from oven, quickly take a cookie cutter, in the desired size, and stamp into cookies, creating scored cookies. Once cooled remove the stamped cookies from the sheet.