Once upon a time, I tried making empanadas. I wasn't the best at it. But after struggling through three, I had had enough - which left me with a pile of dough and a bowl of spinach dip.
After a few quick searches of the interwebs (searches like, "empanadas are hard" and "what do I do with all this dough?"), I settled on making a galette. According to the scholar Wikipedia,
"'Galette' is a term used in French cuisine to designate various types of flat round or freeform crusty cakes."
Because I like to pretend I'm fancy, I may or may not have posted this on Instagram with hashtags like "rustic" and "deconstructed." So, how did I make it? Well, first I sprinkled a little flour on the counter to keep the dough from totally sticking to the surface before rolling it out.
Then I rolled back and forth a few times in one direction before rotating the dough slightly and repeating a few million more times. Anytime I noticed the dough sticking to the rolling pin, I scooped up a little more flour and sprinkled it on the top of the dough and rubbed it into the rolling pin. This may or may not be the correct way to do this, but until I learn otherwise...... I'll keep doing it.
Some people may have attempted to make the below into a perfect circle, but you and I know better - those amateurs! Obviously, a true galette would have a much less symmetric shape, given that it's "freeform."
|"When in doubt, use butter." - Sarah Hartzog (and Paula Dean)|
I'd learned from my empanada attempts that this dough doesn't brown beautifully on it's on, so I took a small bowl and melted a little bit of butter, which I then spread around the dough with a pastry brush. (I totally recommend the silicon kind!) Next, I took the spinach dip that didn't grow up to be an empanada like I'd hoped and spread it all around, an inch or two from the edge of the dough.
|What? I don't use expired food...... (looks around suspiciously)|
I started to think this would be good enough as is, but then I remembered I had some cherry tomatoes in my fridge that were dangerously close to the end of their lives, so I split those in half to sprinkle around the top of the galette.
Fold the edges of the dough over the spinach, brush with butter, and add a little paprika to the top (mostly because it looks good). You're almost ready to bake! One last instruction, take a fork and stab the middle of the crust a few times.. My dough tried to bubble up on me.. if I'd had different toppings, this might have resulted in disaster. Fortunately, I think the cheese and spinach were heavy enough to keep things in check.
Because you're smarter than I am, I'm sure you've already had your oven preheating all this time. Good job! I baked this on 425F until the edges were starting to brown and the tomato skins look wrinkly. I baked my galette on parchment paper, but a pizza pan, cookie sheet, or brown paper sack would all work equally well.
|Obviously, I had to remove my top oven rack to get a good photo. Duh.|
I had my doubts about if it was all the way cooked, so I pulled it out of the oven once and lifted it with a spatula to see how things were going. Since the bottom had browned all the way across, I trusted that it was good and ready.
You should be proud of me. I managed to not eat all of this in one sitting. It was a struggle... but nowhere near as hard as it was to wait to taste it until I'd taken all the photos I needed.