Published on September 20th, 2012 | by Andrea Bertoli1
Fancy Dinner: Zucchini Galette
You might have noticed that the recipes featured here on the blog are vegan, meaning they have no dairy or eggs (and of course no meat, ever!). I prefer to cook, share, and teach vegan recipes because there are so many amazing foods that are vegan, and it’s my personal mission to share the joy of plant-based recipes with everyone. Though I do occasionally eat dairy products, I have never been interested in recipes that call for eggs, butter, cream, milk, and cheese in combination. Not only is this type of vegetarian cooking very expensive, it’s not usually necessary or tasty to include that much dairy. However, every rule has its breaking point, and for me it was this recipe for Smitten Kitchen’s Zucchini Galette. While it goes against most of my cooking rules, um, this might be the most decadent and delicious recipe I’ve every made for a cooking class.
This recipe features butter, sour cream, ricotta cheese, and some Parmesan cheese, oh yeah, and some zucchini too. The crust is a flaky, amazing pastry the likes of which my kitchen has never seen! And the light zucchini plays off the sweet ricotta quite nicely. It’s perfect for your next fancy dinner party. The original recipe can be found here on Smitten Kitchen, but here is my slightly adapted version. In the photo is a half-recipe, perfect for two or three people. If you are having a big dinner party, go ahead and make the full recipe listed below!
For the pastry:
1¼ cups all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 stick (8 Tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
¼ cup sour cream
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
¼ cup ice water
3 cups sliced (rounds) green zucchini
½ cup ricotta cheese
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese or shredded mozzarella
1 Tablespoon Italian herbs
fresh ground black pepper to taste
- For the dough: Whisk together flour and salt in a large bowl. Place in freezer to chill for 30 minutes.
- When flour is cold, add chopped butter and cut into flour using forks, hands, or a pastry blender. Mixture should be still mostly dry, but butter pieces should be very small.
- In another small bowl, whisk together sour cream, lemon juice, and water. Add this to flour mixture. Mix until large lumps form; gently press this together into a ball (dry flour and all) and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour, up to overnight.
- To make the filling: You must dry the zucchini: lay all zucchini rounds onto towels or paper towels and sprinkle with salt. Let rest for 30 minutes, then blot zucchini dry with paper towels before using.
- In a small bowl mix together ricotta, Parmesan, herbs, and black pepper. Set aside.
- To finish: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a floured work surface, roll the dough out into a 12-inch round. Transfer to cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Spread the ricotta mixture evenly over the bottom of the galette dough, leaving a two-inch border. Layer the zucchini on top of the ricotta in circles, starting at the outside edge. Fold the border over the filling, pleating the edge to make it fit. The center will be open.
- Bake the galette until golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before serving. This tastes great hot, warm, or cold, and I think it would pair magnificently with a nice glass of white wine and a big mixed greens salad.
Some notes: This dough was incredibly difficult to work with. Granted, I’ve never made a dough like this before, so I am not an expert. But trust that even if there are bits of dry flour and even if it seems like a cohesive dough will never form, trust that it will all work out after refrigeration. The flour will absorb the moisture and it will roll out smoothly and beautifully.