You'd think, looking back at my blog posts over the past few months, that I've been more of a restaurant chick than a kitchen chick. You wouldn't be far from wrong (and I've got some great restaurant stuff coming!), but I've been busy in the kitchen, too.
After learning basic hot water bath canning this summer, I've had fun making sour cherries preserve, blueberry-lime jam, and grapefruit marmalade. Of course, Fall is apple season, and I currently have a big bag of tart apples sitting in my kitchen that I'll be turning into some kind apple preserve. However, that's not the only thing I've been doing with apples. I've become uncommonly fond of galettes. Rhubarb makes a fabulous galette, and so do apples, too! In fact, apples and bacon make for an uncommonly delicious galette!
While there are plenty of bacon-apple pie recipes out there, I didn't find any bacon-apple galette recipes so I came up with my own.
Kitchen Chick's Bacon Apple Galette
(from Chez Panisse Fruit , but you can use any galette dough recipe)
Makes enough for two galettes
2 C flour
1 Tbs sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
12 Tbs butter, chopped in small pieces and chilled (tip: put in freezer to re-chill after chopping)
7 Tbs ice-cold water, more or less as needed.
(Double for two galettes)
1/3 C sugar
2 very large or 3 to 4 medium to small apples, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick. I like to use tart apples.
4 slices thick-sliced smoked bacon. (I used apple-wood smoked bacon from Sparrow in Kerrytown)
2 to 3 Tbs maple syrup
1 Tbs bacon fat or butter, your choice. Bacon fat will add more bacon flavor, but if you think it will be too much bacon-y goodness, opt for the butter or don't use any extra fat.
(You can do all of the dough using your hands, but I like to cut the butter in with a food processor.)
In food processor, put dry ingredients for dough. Pulse a bit to blend. Add butter and pulse a few times. Butter should still have some good pea-sized chunks. Remove to a bowl or floured work surface. Drizzle ice water over dough in small amounts and mix the dough and press it together until you can form a loose ball. Divide in half, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate at least half and hour.
Chop your bacon into small pieces (1/4 to 1/2 inch?) and cook until fairly crispy, but don't let it get dry and hard with all fat cooked out of it. Lift bacon out of the fat and drain. A non-stick pan is helpful for this next step: put the cooked bacon and maple syrup in a small pan and cook over medium-ish heat. The maple syrup should start to simmer. The longer you cook the maple syrup, the more it will caramelize. If you want more maple flavor, then don't cook it too long. If you prefer more carmel, then let it caramelize a bit more.
If you're good at monitoring the cooking bacon while chopping, you can peel and chop your apples between the bacon steps.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into about a 12-13 inch circle. Brush off excess flour and transfer to a parchment-lined (or Silpat-lined) baking sheet.
Arrange apple slices on the dough. (I usually pile them on for a casual look, but you can get fancy and arrange them neatly in a spiraling circle.) Leave a one inch margin along the outside edge. Top with sugar. Top with your chopped maple-bacon (if the bacon has cooled too much and solidified, you can gently reheat it in its pan). Fold the edges over the galette. If you want the extra fat (yeah! extra fat!), brush your butter or bacon fat over the top, brushing some over the dough as well.
Bake your galette for 35-45 minutes. If necessary for even browning, rotate after 20 minutes or so. Crust should be golden brown and flaky and apples soft. Cool on rack and serve.
Goes great with vanilla ice cream, but is awesome on its own.