Make the dough. Preheat
the oven to 400°F. at least 20 minutes before baking. If not using a black
pan, plan to bake the galette directly on the oven floor; alternatively,
set an oven rack at the lowest level and place a baking stone or cookie
sheet on it before preheating.
Using a floured pastry
cloth and sleeve rubbed with flour or two large sheets of plastic wrap
lightly sprinkled with flour, roll the dough 1/8 inch thick or less and
large enough to cut a 16-inch circle. Use an expandable flan ring or a
cardboard template and a sharp knife to cut the circle. If the dough softens,
slip it (still on the cloth or plastic wrap) onto a baking sheet and refridgerate
it, covered, for about 30 minutes or until firm before lining the pan.
The pastry is too large to slip your hands under and support it adequately.
To transfer it to the pan, roll it loosely over the rolling pin or dust
it lightly with flour and fold in quarters. Leave the overhang.
Sprinkle the apple
slices with the lemon juice to keep them from browning. Arrange the apple
slices, cored sides facing toward the center, overlapping in concentric
circles, starting from the outer edge of the pan. If you run out of room,
push a few slices of the fruit closer together and insert the remaining
slices evenly in between. Fold the overhanging border of dough over the
outer edge of the apples, helping it to pleat softly at even intervals,
and brush this dough rim with a little milk or water. Sprinkle the apples
and the dough rim with the sugar. (This will give the border a crunchy
Dot the apples with
the pieces of butter and bake for 40 minutes or until the apples are tender
when pierced with a skewer and the dough is crisp. Toward the end of baking,
with a metal spatula, carefully lift up the crust and check to make sure
it is not burning. If it is very dark, lower te heat to 375°F. or remove
the tart (without the stone) to a higher rack to finish cooling.
Cool the tart on
the pan on a rack until warm, then glaze if desired.
Make the Glaze (optional)
In a saucepan over medium-low heat, heat the apricot preserves until boiling
and strain them. Stir in the liqueur and brush the glaze onto the apples.
(This creates a shiny finish and piquant taste.)
VARIATION Pear Galette:
Replace the apples with 2 large firm but ripe Barlett pears (about 12
to 14 ounces total); they should have a pronounced pear aroma. Peel, halve
lengthwise, and core the pears. Slice lengthwise into 1/8-inch slices.
Arrange the slices, pointed ends toward the center, in overlapping circles
on the pastry. To form a center pear-shaped decoration, trim 2 slices
to make them shorter but maintain the pear shape and place them, slightly
overlapping, curved sides out. Cut a small piece of stem or vanilla bean
and place it on the pointed end. Use only 2 tablespoons of sugar to sprinkle
STORE Room temperature,
up to 2 days
NOTE A half-size
galette can be made using a 9-inch pan. Roll the dough less than 1/8 inch
thick and large enough to cut an 11-inch circle.
flaky cream cheese pie crust is ideal for this tart because of its mellow,
buttery flavor and its texture, which is slightly softer than the Basic
Flaky Pie Crust, but the flaky pie crust or one of its variations can
be substituted. For the crispiest, flakiest effect of all, puff pastry
is your dough.