It’s hard to resist embracing all of the wonderful things Fall has to offer, especially when it comes to food. Fall flavors are amazing, of course, but the hearty vegetables that are in season this time of year are particularly my cup of tea.
Butternut squash is one of them, and just as soon as the cool temps have gone down enough to start turning on the fireplace, I am cookbook in hand, ready to make on of my favorite fall recipes. And one rainy cold Chicago day, last week, that is precisely what I did.
Once or twice a month, I try to host my wonderful girlfriends Bruna and Katie over, and on this particular night it was especially cold for an October evening. It was the perfect day for a butternut squash and caramelized onion galette.
Galette is a fancy French word for a sort of “cake”. It is basically a flattened dough filled with ingredients and the edges of the crust are folded up. I don’t know if it is true for you, but for me doughs can be particularly intimidating; the consistency of dough can be challenging, and sometimes, recipes call for it to be refrigerated overnight. This is why 9 time out of 10 I bought store made dough. What I especially love about this recipe is that the dough is simple, yet still amazing, and it tastes absolutely delicious.
The onions are caramelized for quite some time; long enough to get rid of the bite, and provide a sweet compliment to the butternut squash. Finished off with some Fontina cheese and sage before being baked in the oven, this beautiful dish also provides the most delicious aroma flowing through your home.
It looks as if it is an impressive dish, especially when serving to your friends to accompany cheap wine and small bites, but is not a complicated dish at all, which is why I love it. Simple, fresh ingredients, and a flavor profile that celebrates the goodness that autumn has to offer, this butternut squash galette is a hit every time.
For the pastry:
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup ice water
For the filling:
- 1 small butternut squash (about one pound)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 to 2 tablespoons butter (if you have only non-stick, the smaller amount will do)
- 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced in half-moons
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Pinch of sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
- 3/4 cup fontina cheese (about 2 1/2 ounces), grated or cut into small bits
- 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage leaves
- Make pastry: In a bowl, combine the flour and salt. Place the butter in another bowl. Place both bowls in the freezer for 1 hour. Remove the bowls from the freezer and make a well in the center of the flour. Add the butter to the well and, using a pastry blender, cut it in until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Make another well in the center. In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream, lemon juice and water and add half of this mixture to the well. With your fingertips, mix in the liquid until large lumps form. Remove the large lumps and repeat with the remaining liquid and flour-butter mixture. Pat the lumps into a ball; do not overwork the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Prepare squash: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Peel squash, then halve and scoop out seeds. Cut into a 1/2-inch dice. Toss pieces with olive oil and a half-teaspoon of the salt and roast on foil lined (for neatness sake) sheet for 30 minutes or until pieces are tender, turning it midway if your oven bakes unevenly. Set aside to cool slightly.
Caramelize onions: While squash is roasting, melt butter in a heavy skillet and cook onion over low heat with the remaining half-teaspoon of salt and pinch of sugar, stirring occasionally, until soft and lightly golden brown, about 20 minutes. Stir in cayenne.
- Raise the oven temperature to 400 degrees. Mix squash, caramelized onions, cheese and herbs together in a bowl.
- Assemble galette: On a floured work surface, roll the dough out into a 12-inch round. Transfer to an ungreased baking sheet. Spread squash, onions, cheese and herb mixture over the dough, leaving a 1 1/2-inch border. Fold the border over the squash, onion and cheese mixture, pleating the edge to make it fit. The center will be open.
Bake until golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven, let stand for 5 minutes, then slide the galette onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges and serve hot, warm or at room temperature. Serves 6.
Recipe by: Smitten Kitchen