For some reason, fall always feels like a time for new beginnings. I know, I know—it’s when everything outside starts to die and wither and the general natural world pretty much passes out until spring, so how is that particularly reinvigorating? Well, if you enjoy quiet and peace and solitude, this ease into hibernation is like a breath of fresh air. Not that I don’t enjoy summer—I most definitely do. It’s just that summer is so busy and hectic and frenetic that by the time it’s over I’m completely exhausted and just want to curl up in a cave with a roaring fire, some soup, and a good book and camp out there until spring. It’s a time to step back from the world and nest and create comfort for yourself. And for me a big part of that is baking + enjoying the cozy flavors of the season, hence this elaborately decorated mushroom galette.

Mushroom Galette with Thyme Garlic and ChevreNow, don’t be put off by the fancy exterior—the filling is of the simplest and most delicious sort. Sautéed mushrooms, garlic, and onions with herby thyme and crumbled tangy chevre cheese, it’s a very easy filling to make and allows the flavors of each comforting element to shine brightly and to their fullest. I don’t expect you to decorate your mushroom galette to the nines like this, though; a simple few cut-outs with a leaf-shaped cookie cutter will add a festive autumnal air to it just as well. Or you can forego the decorations altogether and keep it simple with a plain undecorated top crust, just make sure to poke some holes in the top for the steam to escape through.

Mushroom Galette with Thyme Garlic and ChevreAnd it’s important to note that this mushroom galette requires you to sauté the filling first to cook the water out of the mushrooms and onions before you put it in the galette. The key to making any pastry that has a pre-cooked filling is to ensure the filling is COMPLETELY cooled before assembling it onto the pastry dough, otherwise the butter in the pastry melts from the hot filling and you’re left with an absolute mess of soggy tearing pastry dough. So I recommend either making the mushroom filling the day before and popping it in the refrigerator overnight, or making the filling in the morning and allowing it to cool until you start making the pastry later in the day. And FYI, you can make this with any kind of mushrooms (that are safe to eat, of course). Chanterelles, shiitake, maitake, cremini, white button—they’ll all taste stellar in here as long as you follow the directions. I hope you enjoy it, my friend, and soak up the savory magic of mushroom season while it’s around. (And I have some more mushroom recipes here and here and here if you’re looking for some autumnal recipes to dive into!)

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Mushroom Galette with Thyme, Garlic, and Chevre

Servings 8 people

Ingredients

Thyme + Garlic Crust

  • 1 egg cold
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 6 to 7 tablespoons ice water
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 pinch cream of tartar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter cold and hard, cut into tablespoons

Mushroom and Chevre Filling

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
  • 1 pound mushrooms cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 ounces chevre crumbled

Egg Wash

  • 1 egg whisked with 1 teaspoon milk

Instructions

Thyme + Garlic Crust

  1. Whisk the egg with vinegar and 3 tablespoons of ice water and set aside. Follow instructions below, depending on if you want to make the crust by hand, or if you want to use a food processor.
  2. MANUAL METHOD: Mix together the flour, sugar, thyme, salt, garlic powder, and cream of tartar in a large wide bowl. Using a box grater, grate the butter using the large hole setting of the grater above the bowl, stopping to stir with a fork and coat the butter bits in the flour mixture every 10 seconds or so. When all the butter is in, pinch the mixture together with your fingertips until it resembles the texture of damp sand. Add the water, a tablespoon at a time, mixing it with a fork, until the dough just holds together when you squeeze a fistful of it in your hand.
  3. FOOD PROCESSOR METHOD: Cut the butter into individual tablespoons and set aside. Place the flour, sugar, salt, sage, onion powder, and cream of tartar in the food processor and pulse a few times to mix together. Add the slices of butter and pulse until the butter is reduced to roughly pea-sized pieces. Run the machine while you add the egg mixture, letting it blend for 5 seconds after the liquid is added. Do NOT overmix. Add the remaining ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing as you add it, until the dough just holds together. It shouldn't be too wet and sticky, nor should it be super crumbly.
  4. Divide the dough into two equal portions, wrap in beeswrap or plastic wrap, and place them in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Mushroom and Chevre Filling

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Add the onions and reduce heat to medium low and stir to combine. Cook until the onions are transparent and lightly golden around the edges, about 12 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
  2. Add the garlic and cook for 5 minutes more until the garlic is very fragrant, stirring every minute or so. Add 1 teaspoon of the sherry vinegar, then the add mushrooms, salt, thyme, sage, pepper, and the remaining tablespoon olive oil. Stir to combine. Cook until the mushrooms release their water, have softened and darkened in color and are fragrant, and the water they released has evaporated, about 20 to 25 minutes more, stirring every 5 minutes or so. Stir in the last teaspoon of the sherry vinegar, remove from heat, and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature. After it's cooled, stir in the crumbled chevre. If preparing the filling the day beforehand, place the filling in an airtight container and refrigerate overnight.

Assembly

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Roll out one portion of the dough into a circle and trim off 2 inches around the edge. Cut decorative shapes (leaves, etc) from the 2-inch border piece and set them aside. Lightly brush the decorative cut-outs with the egg wash, then lightly brush the circle with the egg wash, and place the decorative cut-outs on it. Use a small knife to poke 3 vent holes in different parts of the crust. Place the decorated circle in the freezer for 30 minutes to help solidify it.
  2. Roll out the other portion of the dough into a large circle about 1/8-inch thick. Transfer it to a lipped baking sheet lined with parchment paper (it's okay if the edges hang over a bit, we'll be folding it back over the filling). Evenly distribute the cooled mushroom filling  in the center of the circle, leaving a 2-inch border of emptiness around the edges. Place the decorated circle on top of the mushroom filling, and fold the edges of the lower crust up over the upper crust. Lightly brush the exposed edges of the folded crust with the egg wash. Place the pan in the oven and bake until the crust is deeply golden, about 50 minutes.

Mushroom Galette with Thyme Garlic and Chevre

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