pie

Late Summer Vegetable Galette

I'm a hardcore pie lover. I love a good flakey crust, and really love to change things up and make a savory one every once and a while, and galettes are one of my favorite ways to shake things up. If you're not already familiar, don't be intimidated, galettes are as easy as piling filling on top of a pie crust and sticking it in the oven. They're crazy simple, I promise.  

This is a nice easy dinner if you're looking for a way to use up those amazing summer veggies still sitting on your counter. The great thing about this is that you can use all sorts of veggies, so don't be afraid to experiment and change things out with whatever you have on hand. 

VEGETABLE GALETTE

Pate Brisee (pie dough)

(Adapted from Martha Stewart)

21/2 Cups of AP Flour

1 Teaspoon of Salt

1 Teaspoon of Sugar

2 Sticks of Unsalted Butter (cut into small pieces)

1/4-1/2 Cup of Ice Water

*The original recipe calls for combining ingredients in a food processor, however I use my Kitchen Aid mixer, and just make sure the butter is extra cold to compensate for a little extra time (I stick the cut up butter into my freezer for just a couple minutes before I get started).

Combine flour, salt, and sugar in bowl of elextric mixer. Add in butter pieces and beat on medium with the paddle attachment until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add in ice water slowly, with mixer on, until dough just holds together, but isn't wet or sticky.

Divide dough into two equal balls. Flatten into disks, plastic wrap, and chill for at least an hour.

The Filling

1 2/2 Tbsp Butter

1/3 Onion, chopped

2 Cloves of Minced Garlic

1/2 Bunch of Asparagus, chopped into small pieces

1 1/2 Cups of Summer Squash, cut up

1 Tomato, cut into large slices

Olive Oil

Egg Wash

Parmesan Cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Sauté onion in butter until tender. Add in asparagus, squash, and garlic, and sauté until veggies are slightly tender. Remove, and allow to cool. 

Roll out chilled dough into rough circles and place on greased baking sheet. Cover the middle area of the dough with onions, then layer with asparagus, squash, and finally a large slice or two of tomato. drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Fold up edges of pie crust and pinch together so they hold their shape. Brush with a little egg wash (egg lightly beat with a little bit of milk), and bake for 30 minutes, or until crust is golden brown, and vegetables are soft. Remove, and top with a little parmesan. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving

Pumpkin Puree

Last year was my first time making pumpkin puree for my pies and I love it! It's really easy, cheap, and the puree stays good in the fridge for a week, or in the freezer for up to three months. I used 2 little Sweet Pumpkins (they were each a little over 2 pounds), there are a lot of other varieties of pumpkins you can use but I like how small these guys are, it makes it a little bit easier when it comes to cutting and getting in and out of the oven.

Pumpkin Puree

2 Sweet Pumpkins

Salt

Clean and dry your pumpkins, remove stems and slice in half. Scoop out all of the seeds and cut out the big fibers. Sprinkle flesh with salt and place flesh side down on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 400 degees for 30-45 minutes (you should be able to easily slide a pearing knife into the flesh when they're done). Allow to cool on rack for an hour. Scoop the roasted flesh from the skin and process in a food processor (you can do this in a good blender too, you'll just need to stop to mix up a lot). It should be smooth and creamy when done. Refrigerate up to one week, or freeze up to three months.

(Easy) Cheesecake

I've been a pretty "avid" baker since I was a teenager. I used to make cupcakes at least once a week and loved trying out a new recipe for desserts especially. I've made a few cheesecakes before but always felt like they were always such a bother. Hot water baths, 3 entire packages of cream cheese, and springform pans made me turn my nose up at baking them.

Then, last week I found myself with an unused graham cracker pie crust just sitting around (from a different failed recipe attempt - whomp whomp!). Cheesecake was the first thing that came to mind, and since it was already in a pie crust I wouldn't have to worry about messing with all that annoying stuff, or being left with tons of cheesecake at the end. After doing plenty of google-ing for cheesecakes in pie pans and coming back a little disapointed I decided to do my own thing and risk it - I'm actually really happy with how it came out! Light and fluffy, sweet and tangy! Not to mention it was easy:)

(Easy) Cheesecake

1 (8oz) Package of Cream Cheese

1/2 cup of Sugar

1 tsp of Vanilla

1/8 tsp of Salt

2 Large Eggs

1/3 cup of Sour Cream

Beat cream cheese in stand mixer until fluffy. Gradually blend in sugar, vanilla, and salt. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add in sour cream and beat to combine. Pour into prepared graham cracker crust in a pie pan.Bake for 30-35 minutes until set (mine actually poofed up a little, but settled down after cooling). Cool and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Enjoy!