Monday, November 7, 2016

butternut squash and caramelized onion galette.

For the better part of the last week I've had an insane amount of election related anxiety.   I just want this thing to be over.  I know Hilary is a very polarizing candidate (actually I this the same could be said about the Donald) and I can understand why people may not like her - she can feel standoffish, secretive, and untrustworthy but, I feel that a lot of people treat her differently because she is a woman and that really bothers me.  As someone who works in a predominantly male-oriented field, I've observed on a first-hand basis the different standards that exist for men and women.   It's infuriating.   If Hilary was a man, so much of what has been said about her would never have been said.  She wouldn't be called nasty or angry - she would be considered passionate or a true leader.   Double standards suck.

These two candidates represent two very different paths for the future of America.  And one of those paths - the path where we close ourselves from the world, where we no longer allow people to come to our country to fulfill the American dream, the one where LGBT's have no rights, and women can't make their own decisions is in danger of becoming a reality.  I don't want that.   I don't believe that is what's best for us.   Trade is good, allowing gay's to marry is good, bringing refugees into this country is good.   Moving forward is good.  Showing the world America is a progressive leader is good.   

So tomorrow night Tyler and I are going to hunker down on the couch, watch the election coverage, eat this tart (which is fall at its finest), and (hopefully) watch history be made.  #werewithher      

Butternut Squash and Caramelized Onion Galette 
Recipe from Seven Spoons

This tart is one of the best things I've made in recent history.  I served it with roast chicken and vegetables but it would also make a great side for Thanksgiving (something vegetarians would appreciate it).   

A couple of notes.  The squash, onions, and dough can be prepared a day or two before you want to serve it. Just assemble the filling and bake on the day of (thus making this the ideal party food).   You can also divide the dough in half and make two 9-inch galettes.   

For the Pastry

2½ cups (320 g) all-purpose flour, including 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour if you like, plus more for work surface
1/2 teaspoon (2 g) table salt
16 tablespoons (227 g) or 2 sticks, unsalted butter
1/2 cup (64 g) sour cream or full-fat Greek yogurt, strained
1 tablespoon (15 mL) white wine vinegar
1/3 cup (79 mL) ice water

For the Filling

2 small or 1 large butternut squash, about 21/2 pounds (1134 g)
3 tablespoons (45 mL) oil
1½ teaspoons (5 g) tsp table salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon (14 g) butter
2 large sweet onions, such as Spanish or Vidalia, halved, thinly sliced in half-moons
1/4 teaspoon (1 g) sugar
1/4 teaspoon (1 g) cayenne pepper, or to taste (optional
2 cups (180 g) grated Italian Fontina cheese (or a combination of Fontina and Gruyere) 
1 teaspoon (4 g) chopped fresh thyme, or 2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
1 egg beaten with 1 tsp (4 g) water, for glaze (optional, but makes for a croissant-looking finish)

To make pastry: In a bowl, combine the flour and salt. Add the whole sticks of butter and, using a pastry blender, break up the bits of butter until the texture is like cornmeal, with the biggest pieces the size of pebbles. In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream, vinegar and water, and pour this over the butter-flour mixture. Stir with a spoon or a rubber spatula until a dough forms, kneading it once or twice on the counter if needed to bring it together. Pat the dough into a ball, wrap it in plastic and chill it in the refrigerator for an hour or up to two days.

To prepare squash: Peel the squash, then halve and scoop out seeds. Cut into ½-inch to ¾-inch chunks. Pour 2 tablespoons (30 mL) of the olive oil into one or two smaller baking sheets, spreading it to an even slick. Lay the squash chunks on the baking sheet in one layer, sprinkle with ½ teaspoon (2 g) of the salt, and freshly ground black pepper, and roast in a 400 F oven for 30 minutes, or until squash is tender, turning the pieces occasionally so that they brown evenly. Set aside to cool slightly. Leave the oven on.

While the squash is roasting, melt the butter and remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a heavy frying pan, and cook the onions over medium-low heat with the sugar and remaining teaspoon of salt, stirring occasionally, until soft and tender, about 25 minutes. Stir in the cayenne pepper, if using.

Mix the squash, caramelized onions, cheese and herbs together in a bowl.

To assemble the galette: On a floured work surface, roll the dough out into a 16- to 17-inch round. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread the squash-and-cheese mixture over the dough, leaving a 2 to 2½-inch border. Fold the border over the squash and cheese, pleating the edge to make it fit. The centre will be open. Brush the outside of the crust with the egg-yolk wash, if using.

Bake until golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove the galette from the oven, let stand for five minutes, then slide onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges and serve hot, warm or at room temperature.

Makes 1 hearty 12-inch galette, serving 8

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