My Mother’s Maine Blueberry Galette

The last of summer’s fruit was crying to be used this weekend before fall’s bounty of crops made their way to our door from the local CSA. In the glow of a full harvest moon, I figured I’d make my go-to galette, a simple recipe my mother perfected for at-home ad-hoc entertaining on long luxurious summer nights.
Growing up, my family spent each and every summer in Nantucket, Massachusetts’ magical island. It’s a place where time seems to stop: a place where one is ruled by the waves, the weather, and high tide. It’s a highly unique New England beach-comber community where everyone is always up for a sail, a round of tennis, a beach walk, and of course a cocktail.
Those Nantucket summer memories are marked by Dave Mathew’s Under the Table and Dreaming, sun filled-beach runs, picnics, and Patagonias, and, most memorably, daily trips with my mother to Bartlett Farms. This is where I believe my love for food was born. Whether it was tomatoes, stone fruits, apples or pears: whatever was in it’s prime, was going to be in the galette that evening. 
I must say that this approach is a wonderful way to cook, and an even better way to eat! Spontaneous, creative, sustainable, and healthy. My mother was working it before the trend took off, as usual.

And so I share with you a shred of childhood comfort, in this my mother’s go-to galette. Using fresh blueberries I brought back, and then carefully froze, from our late-summer trip to Maine, my Blueberry Galette is sweet, simple, and a true staple for your recipe repertoire.

Using store bought dough and a few pantry staples, this galette is an excellent recipe to make anywhere. When I’m a guest in someone’s home, I often offer, and many times am asked, to make dessert. And this is that perfect recipe that always go back to: it feeds and pleases a crowd, takes you no time to prepare, and requires no special ingredients or equipment…
Mom’s Maine Blueberry Galette
Makes one roughly 11-inch tart 

1 store bought pie dough (Pillsbury’s frozen, sometimes fridged, pie crust dough is the easiest to find, but any will work just as well)
2 pints fresh in-season blueberries, washed and drained well
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon agave nectar (can also substitute sugar or honey)
1 tablespoon arrowroot powder (can substitute cornstarch)
dash of vanilla extract
dash of sea salt
1 egg, beaten with a pinch of sea salt

Coconut Sugar for dusting (of course can substitute brown sugar in the raw (best) or generic sugar if that is all thats on hand)

*You will need a cookie sheet or large baking tray, a spatula, a sieve, a pastry or marinade brush, parchment paper, and a rolling pin.

1. Preheat oven to 450 F. In a large bowl combine blueberries, vinegar, agave or honey, arrowroot powder or cornstarch, vanilla, and salt and stir by fold gently a few times with a spatula to just combine the flavors. Let stand at room temp for 15 minutes.
2. While the blueberries macerate, prep the egg wash. Then take the thawed dough from the fridge and roll out the thawed dough on a flat surface, light dusted with flour. Roll the dough out slightly till it is roughly circular in shape and quite thin, maybe 1/8 of inch. Place the dough carefully onto a parchment lined sheet or baking tray.
3. Drain the blueberries in a mesh sieve, allowing all that extra juices to run off, as it will make the pastry soggy when baking. Then carefully pour the blueberries onto the center of the pastry leaving roughly an inch and a half border. Brush the dough around the blueberries with the egg wash and lightly dust with the coconut, or raw, or generic sugar. Then crimp the dough up and towards the center, making folds all the way around to seal the edge and create a border. Brush the top of the crimped dough with egg wash and generously dust it with your sugar of choice.
4. Place the tart/sheet pan in the middle of the oven for about 12 minutes or until the dough is cooked and has browned on the edges.

5. Remove the sheet from the oven and let cool at room temp for 10-15 minutes before slicing and serving. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, as my mother always did, or some whipped honey (recipe to follow in the coming week)

You can make this galette with ANY suitable fruit. Simply core, half, and thinly slice all stone fruits, apples and pears, and fan them out in a circular pattern to cover the center of the galette. Do the same with heirloom tomatoes, herbs, and goat cheese, and olive oil to make a savory galette. Or use your creativity! The possibilities are endless, so experiment and enjoy.
What? Isn’t that how you do it?

Here’s to happy Summers past, and even happier Falls to come…

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