As I get older it becomes harder and harder to decide what I actually want to do for special occasions like my birthday. Josh asks and I just go blank. Part of it is probably my personality – I’m happy whenever everyone else is happy. But it’s also just that I feel so blessed in the ordinary days that I don’t have a real need for anything extravagant. Except when it comes for dessert of course. Last year, it was this cobbler (which I made again recently), this year I made this galette on two occasions surrounding my birthday, saving myself a big slice to enjoy.
I love galettes and let me tell you why. They sound vvncy, look rustic and interesting (and I’m all about the rustic instead of perfect look) and while you get the same taste benefit as with a pie they are way easier to make, at least in my opinion. One crust to roll out, a pile of fruit and a little extra sugar to top.
The ‘ordinary’ week leading up to my birthday was so perfect that by the time my birthday arrived I felt totally full and blessed. I spent an evening with all of my best friends celebrating all of our summer birthdays, got to prepare a gourmet meal for the homeless (which included several of these galettes), ate alfresco at our favorite casual place and enjoyed wine with my mushroom sloppy joe, watched the fire works and parade on pioneer day (Utah’s bonus holiday), had a big family meal with friends and made this amazing cobbler, went to breakfast with one of my favorite people, and watched Everett kick and giggle at swim lessons. Then on the actual day of my birthday we headed up to the mountains, an always welcomed escape.
Many of birthdays past I get a day older and somehow feel a little empty and in want of something more, not necessarily material but more in relationships – to be more known by those nearest to me. This birthday instead of wanting more I just decided I wanted to give more and enjoy more of my ordinary days. I get so much more filled up when I’m serving and caring for others than when I am the center of some attention. I don’t know why I forget this on birthdays but I loose sight of it. Those meals shared with those close to me throughout the week we’re some of the best of had all year. And the evening I spent serving a meal to some folks in recovery, I was more blessed than by any amount of attention I might get being celebrated myself.
And the best part was, they all loved my galette! Some asked for seconds and others nearly licked their plates clean. That is simply the best blessing any cook can receive on her birthday or otherwise!!
More Birthday worthy desserts:
Mexican Chocolate Pudding Cake (vegan)
- 1/2 cup butter, 1 stick
- 1/2 cup walnuts*
- 1 cup flour, plus 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 cup ice cold water
- 2 tablespoons milk, set aside for finishing
- extra sugar for dusting, coarse sugar is best
- 2 cups raspberries
- 1/4 cup currants,* optional
- 4 small apricots, 1 cup sliced
- 1 tablespoon corn starch
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/4 cup sugar
Use a large grate of a cheese grater to grate the stick of butter into smaller pieces and place this into the fridge to stay cool.
Meanwhile, toast the walnuts in the oven for 8-10 minutes or until fragrant. Let cool then pulse in a food processor until a fine powder-like nut flour. Combine the walnut flour with the regular flour and add in the salt and cinnamon. Whisk to combine.
Take the butter out of the fridge and mix this into the flour using a mixer or your hands. Quickly and carefully mix together (don't over mix). The result should be pea-sized granules of flour with butter pieces still whole throughout the mixture.
Add the cold water one tablespoon at a time. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and gently knead the dough just until it comes together into a ball. Wrap with plastic wrap and place in the fridge.
Combine the fresh fruit with the corn starch, lemon juice, and sugar. Let sit while you roll out the dough.
Prehat the oven to 375 degrees. Roll out the dough on a floured surface to a 12 inch diameter. Use your rolling pin to transfer the dough circle to a parchment lined baking sheet. Spoon the fruit out onto the center of the dough (keeping it in a high mound in the center). Fold up the sides onto the fruit then brush the milk onto the dough and sprinkle with coarse sugar.
Bake at 375 for 45-50 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly.
Serve with ice cream or whipped cream.
Almonds or pecans can be substituted for the walnuts or use a all flour crust by adding 1/2 cup more flour instead of the ground nuts to the dough.