Baked Sunday Mornings: Brown Butter Apple Cranberry Galette

I was so happy to see the Brown Butter Apple Cranberry Galette on the Baked Sunday Mornings schedule this week. I tested the recipe for the cookbook and loved it. However, I tested the recipe in the summer when fresh cranberries were not available and had to use dried ones instead. I was eager to give it a try with fresh cranberries.

You make the crust for this galette in the food processor by mixing together all-purpose flour, cake flour, sugar, and salt; adding in frozen cubed shortening and butter; and adding ice water until the dough comes together. You need to chill the dough for at least an hour before rolling it out.

I rolled the chilled dough out between two sheets of parchment paper and didn't need to use any flour. After another quick chill, I sprinkled panko crumbs onto the dough and arranged the filling in the center, comprised of thinly sliced apples (I used Stayman Winesap) and fresh cranberries that had been tossed with dark brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, and browned butter. After folding the edges of the dough over the apples, brushing brown butter onto the crust and fruit, and sprinkling on coarse sugar, the galette was ready to bake.
I ended up baking the galette for 50 minutes because I wanted to make sure that it was thoroughly cooked, including the bottom crust. The crust developed a couple of small tears in the oven (you can see them around two and three o'clock in the photo above), but in general, I was very pleased with how the final product looked. I did not strain my brown butter and so there were dark specks of browned milk solids visible all over the crust. The galette cut cleanly and the filling held its shape perfectly; it was sturdy enough that you could pick it up and eat a slice without a fork.
This galette was excellent. For some reason I totally suck at making traditional pies with pastry crusts -- the bottom crust is always undercooked and/or soggy. But I do much better with tarts and freeform pies (for instance, I had great success with King Arthur Flour's freeform Crusty Apple Pie). This crust turned out perfectly. It was buttery, firm, flaky, cooked through, and not soggy in the slightest. I had sliced my apples very thin using a mandoline, so the cross-section of each slice revealed a tightly-packed stack of apple layers. The cranberries became quite dark during baking -- blackened in some cases -- and some of them burst. 

The cinnamon flavor in the filling is not very prominent; the focus of this tart is the flavor of the apples. The cranberries were quite tart, but the sharp flavor was a nice contrast. I guess this is a major difference between using fresh cranberries and dried -- the dried cranberries I buy are always sweetened, so they don't give you the same degree of puckery sourness. I like this pie with both fresh and dried fruit, although I think fresh cranberries look more attractive. Either way, I'm thankful for this rustic pie that is a delicious and comforting fall dessert.

Recipe: "Brown Butter Apple Cranberry Galette" from Baked Occasions by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito, recipe available here at Baked Sunday Mornings.

Previous Post: "Who Needs a Pie Pan to Make Pie?: Crusty Apple Pie," October 6, 2014.


Beautiful! I struggle with traditional pies as well, so I agree that this was a nice alternative. I also had very thin slices, and I love the cross-section of stacked thin layers! Happy Thanksgiving! :)