Tag Archives: galette

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Pages from my sketchbook

Pages from my sketchbook

I love sketching recipes in notebooks...

I love sketching recipes in notebooks…

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Spelt flour crêpes

A week-end in Brittany last year was the motive behind tonight’s post: How could I even get close to the light and plump “crepes” we had enjoyed every morning at Castel Clara?! A breakfast made in Brittany.

For such a simple act – where every actor therefore needs to shine through-  I got together the best ingredients possible: a dreamy salted butter from Borough  Market, some farm eggs, whole milk, sea salt and a light organic Spelt flour.

I had never tried Spelt in pancakes and yet this is the “froment” that the best breton crepes are made of… I used it combined with whole milk for a truly luxury taste. I also mixed it with chesnut flour for a special “galette” version stuffed with my favorite chesnut cream filling. You will have to blame it on my French parents if for Pancake day, I am actually making crêpes and galettes! I do love a nice, thick pancake but a crêpe is both richer and thinner and I for one will embrace that…

Ingredients list:

  • Spelt flour 280g (or 200g of spelt and 80 g of chesnut)
  • Caster sugar 70g
  • Melted salted butter 25g
  • Eggs 2
  • pinch of salt
  • Whole milk 500ml

Mix the sifted flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl.

Make a well and break two eggs in there. Stir with a whip while adding the milk. The batter should be runny and light.

Cover with cling film and put into the fridge to rest for half hour.

We served ours with a double chocolate and caramel sauce. It is Shrove Tuesday only once a year after all… And we have been rehearsing since Sunday so my eldest son did not feel left out!

Supplier’s notes:

The butter comes from Beillevaire in Montpellier street- also a stall in Borough Market

The Spelt flour comes from Doves Farm and the Chesnut one from Clement Faugier

The chesnut jam comes from Michel Croze

Chocolate, almond and hazelnut galette- illustrated recipe

Page from my illustrated journal

Make your last galette of the month a great one. This recipe is the closest to Nutella I will ever want to get! Irresistible.

Ingredients list:

  • 2 rolls of frozen puff pastry (all butter is best – check for no hydrogenated fat)
  • Brown sugar 125g
  • Almond powder 150g
  • hazelnut 50g
  • 2 beaten eggs
  •  Butter 50g
  • Chocolate 50g
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • A little dark rum

Melt the butter and chocolate on low heat – do not burn!

Mix the sugar and almond powder.

Ground  or crush the hazelnuts and add that in. You can inverse the ratio so it tastes closer to Nutella.

Beat the eggs until light and creamy and add slowly to the mix. Add the butter mix and the rum and vanilla extract.

Roll out the pastry. Ideally, the pastry and your hands are cold. This is important when working with any pastry but with puff it is essential: the quicker you work the better for a raised and light result. I always work on marble which makes it easier to keep everything cold while rolling out the thinnest pastry.

Cut out a large circle and then a second one but slightly bigger. Lay the first circle on a floured oven tray. Put the filling in the centre and spread it to about a good inch from the sides. Do not forget to place two “fèves” in the mix. Lay the second circle over and fold the sides over it. Push the tip of a fork all around the edge to seal! Decorate with light knife marks and brush over with an egg yolk.

Put in the midle of a warm oven for 30mn (200°). Eat hot with a mug of cold cider. You don’t have to put a charm into it if you are not celebrating the Epiphany and you can eat it any time of the year – in which case it is called a pithiviers.

My collection of old fashioned charms inspired me to take some shots very reminiscent of a great book I found recently : “Little people in the city”, street art by Slinkachu. See for yourselves!

Celebrating the Epiphany!

Prête à manger!

Prête à manger!

La Galette des Rois

Ingredients list:

  • 2 rolls of frozen puff pastry (all butter is best – check for no hydrogenated fat)
  • Brown sugar 125g
  • Almond powder 200g
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • 50g Butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • A little dark rum

The secret of easy pastry is to follow the measured quantities as if the result depended on it – it does!

Mix the sugar and almond power . Beat the eggs until light and creamy and add slowly to the mix. Add butter and flavours.

Roll out the pastry. Ideally, the pastry and your hands are cold. This is important when working with any pastry but with puff it is essential: the quicker you work the better for a raised and light result. I always work on marble which makes it easier to keep everything cold while rolling out the thinnest pastry.

Cut out a large circle and then a second one but slightly bigger. Lay the first circle on a floured oven tray. Put the filling in the centre and spread it to about a good inch from the sides. Do not forget to place two “fèves” in the mix. Lay the second circle over and fold the sides over it. Push the tip of a fork all around the edge to seal! Decorate with light knife marks and brush over with melted butter.

Put in the midle of a warm oven for 30mn (200°). Eat hot with a mug of cold cider.

The tradition of choosing a king (and Queen) of the feast seems to go as far back as the roman Saturnalia festivals. It was then incorporated to the christian’s traditions along with many pagan festivals and the date was chosen to herald the arrival of the Wise Men. In Provence, the original dry broad bean in the galette was replaced with a porcelain figurine representing the “santons” or the different characters of the Provencal Creche which features a wide array of forgotten trade such as “cantonnier” (road layer) or “rémouleur” (travelling knife sharpener).

When in France around Christmas, I try to hunt for my “fèves” in flea markets or “vide-grenier”, the local car-boot sales!

The children love finding them in their share and then choosing a Queen or King to reign with over the party. At that point, a couple of paper crowns will prove handy as I learnt last year when I had to bargain for my vintage fève back with a shocked 3 year old who was quite ready to forfeit her crown for a lovely painted baby Jesus in its straw! I still feel slightly guilty but I got it back!… Promising myself to use simple broad beans next time ’round. Still failing…