The best thing about late summer, besides for the slowly cooling nights and star-filled skies, is the stone fruit. The apricots, the peaches, the plums. They become softer, and more full of nectar, and sweetness.
These fruits work well in almost any scenario, but in the urgent rush to consume them before they’re gone, I like them best simple. Tossed in a little sugar, vanilla bean and lemon juice, with a splash of whiskey for extra flavor and then gently enfolded by a flaky and buttery-sweet dough, these stone fruits, which bake up extraordinarily well, are nothing short of delightful. It’s an unfussy dessert, but the end results, both taste and look-wise, when topped with ice cream and freshly made caramel sauce, are almost unbeatable, and one of my favorite ways to usher out August.
Yield: 1 galette
Why I love this recipe: the dough for this galette is my favorite pie dough recipe, which uses frozen butter, apple cider vinegar, and a laminating technique, similar to puff pastry, to create an extremely flaky dough. Adding vanilla bean, nutmeg and whiskey to the stone fruits makes them flavorful and extra fruity, and softens them up just a bit, so that they turn faintly floral in fragrance.
For the dough:
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons flour
- 1/2 stick frozen butter
- 1/2 stick cold butter
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 1/2 ounces water
For the fruits:
- 7-8 apricots, plums, peaches and nectarines
- 1-2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean seeds
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon whiskey
- egg, for egg-wash
- turbinado sugar, for sprinkling
- vanilla ice cream, for serving
- caramel sauce, for serving
- To make the crust, combine the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl. Use your fingers to cut in the stick of cold butter until it is the size of peas. Then cut in the frozen butter, leaving it in bigger, visible pieces.
- Add the apple cider vinegar to the water and make a well in the center of the flour and butter mixture. Using a wooden spoon, mix the water into the flour until just combined.
- If the dough seems dry, add more water a couple of teaspoons at a time. Press the dough together, form into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill the dough overnight.
- Preheat oven to 400º. Remove the dough from the freezer and let it warm up slightly on the counter.
- In a large bowl, rub the vanilla bean seeds and nutmeg into the sugar to evenly distribute. Wash the fruits, and cut into halves. Add the halved fruits, whiskey and lemon juice into a large bowl with the sugar mixture and gently toss to combine evenly.
- On a lightly floured surface, flour the disk of dough and compact it into a little rectangle. Fold it over 3 times, like a business letter. Then roll it out into a rectangle again. Repeat this process 3 times.
- Now, roll the rectangle into a 9″ circle and trim the edges neatly. Fill with the fruit filling.
- Crimp the edges together, brush with an egg wash and sprinkle liberally with turbinado sugar. Freeze for 5 minutes before baking.
- Put the galette on a baking sheet to catch any drips and bake for 35-40 minutes, until the juices bubble and the crust browns nicely. Cool before serving. Top with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce.