You can’t really go wrong with these little freeform pastries – just about every fruit imaginable atop pastry and almond cream is generous and delicious. You can buy ready-made puff pastry but homemade puff pastry will give you a deep buttery crispiness that makes them extra spesh.
Pear and Grape Galettes illustration By Georgie Thompson.
Pear & Grape Galettes
- 3-4 Corncord Pears, sliced in quaters or eights.
- 1 bunch of grapes (darker the better), slice in half or kept whole.
- 200g unsalted butter
- 200g caster sugar
- 2 free-range eggs
- 200g ground almonds
- 250g strong plain flour
- 1 tsp fine sea salt
- 250g butter, at room temperature, but not soft
- about 150ml cold water
- Crème fraîche, to serve
I made a ‘rough’puff pastry which is fairly straightforward – speeding up the often tedious and repetitive process of rolling layers in traditional puff pasty. There’s a nice little video for making the quicker Rough Puff by the master Michel Roux here.
To make the pastry, sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Roughly break the butter in small chunks, add them to the bowl and rub them in loosely. You need to see bits of butter.
Make a well in the bowl and pour in about two-thirds of the cold water, mixing until you have a firm rough dough adding extra water if needed. Cover with cling film and leave to rest for 20 mins in the fridge.
To make the frangipane, beat the butter and sugar together in a bowl until light and fluffy. Crack the eggs into the bowl one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the ground almonds and mix well until combined. Set aside.
Take the dough out of the fridge and turn out onto a lightly floured board, knead gently and form into a smooth rectangle. Roll the dough in one direction only, until 3 times the width, about 20 x 50cm. Keep edges straight and even. Don’t overwork the butter streaks; you should have a marbled effect.
Fold the top third down to the centre, then the bottom third up and over that. Give the dough a quarter turn (to the left or right) and roll out again to three times the length. Fold as before, cover with cling film and chill for at least 20 mins before rolling to use.
Roll out the dough to large rectangle to about 3-5mm depth. Cut circles about 6″/15cm in diameter and place on a greased baking tray leaving an inch or two between each round.
Keep the excess pastry, but be careful not to scrunch too much when reassembling and rolling do the layers are preserved.
On each round, place a large tablespoon (or two) of frangipane in the centre, spread around, leaving about an inch around the edge so the pastry will puff around to form a crust. Top with quarter pear and half grapes, I fanned out the pears and put grapes in between the layers, but you can’t really go wrong here.
Bake at 180° in the oven for about 15 minutes or until the pastry has risen and topping golden brown.