Happy January friends! I am back after an unannounced, but thoroughly needed, internet fast. I am also back in town after a week away in ridiculously un-wintery So. Cal.
Jeff and I rang in the New Year like the
exhausted parents rockstars that we are…with annual cookie baking, Doctor Who watching, and fireworks viewing from the posh view on our sun room couch. Thanks to a middle of the movie zonk out, I was awake and refreshed as the page was flipped on the Gregorian calendar and I even got a very nice kiss. And then I went to bed and was awakened every hour on the hour by Fern. G’morning.
It was also an evening of gustatory delights and as I write, there are multi-grain waffles being ironed in the kitchen. We spent the morning yesterday at the Ferry Plaza Farmer’s Market and I treated myself to the incredibly affordable wild mushrooms at Far West Fungi. My heart palpitates at the name “Bolete” like I imagine some other gals go for diamonds. Alas, anything beyond your common button or crimini is usually worth 80 times its weight in gold, and so my desire is usually just wistful. However, yesterday I was able to get three baskets of forest gems…chantrelles, candy caps and hedgehog mushrooms. I wanted to make a special celebratory meal with them, but was unable to find a recipe that would highlight their complexity AND have enough of a little extra special wow. So I made up my own with what we had on hand. Simple and smokey with a little maple sweetness from the candy caps… and it was so delicious that I wanted to share it with you as soon as possible…just in case you wanted to make it to start your new year off right!
Wild Mushroom Galette with Thyme Crust
(Amounts are approximate since I made it up as I went along.)
3/4 c whole wheat pastry flour
3/4 c unbleached pastry flour
1/2 c butter or margarine
1/2 tsp salt
2 T dried thyme
3-5 T ice water
corn meal for baking
4-5 cups mushrooms, sliced (like I said, I used chanterelle, candy caps and hedgehog, but button or crimini would be delish too)
1 cup (or more) Goat Gouda cheese (this is just what I had on hand. I bet gruyere or even chevre would be great.)
1 shallot, minced
3 garlic cloves, pressed
2 T olive oil
1/2 – 3/4 C brandy
For the crust, sift the flours into a bowl. Add the thyme. Cut in the butter until the mixture is like course pebbly sand. Add the ice water one tablespoon at a time, stirring with a wooden spoon until a ball is formed. Stick it in the fridge while you make the filling.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet and saute the shallot and garlic over low heat for 3 minutes. Add your mushrooms and sprinkle sea salt over the mushrooms, distributing evenly, to help them release their juices. Saute for a few minutes more, then add the pepper and brandy. Simmer until you’ve got 1-2 tablespoons of liquid left and the mushrooms are tender.
Grease a cookie sheet and sprinkle with corn meal. Roll out your dough into a rough circle and place on the sheet. Mine looked like this:
Obviously the next step is to add half the cheese, in a small spread out pile in the middle. Next, add 3/4 of the filling:
Add 1/4 of the cheese, the rest of the filling, then the last bit of cheese on top. Fold up the edges and seal lightly by pressing together, but don’t fuss with it too much. The important part is the corners.
Brush the top with butter or egg and bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes. Let cool for a few before cutting into it.
I will be back in the early part of next week with proper new year ruminations, pictures and tales to tell. For now, I wish for you all to enjoy the bright clear light of the January sun, surrounded by all that reminds you of the goodness of this life we share….as my connection to you all through this blog is one of those things. Much love.