If you’ve been following along with this blog for a little while now, you probably know that we got our allotment just over a year ago. However, for years before that I’ve been growing what I can in our tiny London gardens in our various flats. One of the things I’ve managed to grow consistently over that time has been raspberries. Raspberries don’t need a lot of maintenance and once you get the hang of them they will keep going forever – the ones I have are from shoots that came off my grandmother’s raspberries that are decades old. The key with raspberries is that the fruit grows on older stems, meaning that the new stems we planted on our allotment are only starting to fruit this year. Once the older stems have finished fruiting, you cut them to the ground and leave the new growth to overwinter and fruit the following year. It’s a lovely cycle of growth, ageing, death and rebirth. Most of our raspberries are planted on our allotment, but we have one in the garden that has been growing now for a few years, and this year has fruited really strongly and much earlier than the ones on the plot.
Every day I’ve been going out to check on the fruit and pick whatever is ready. I lightly pull on the berry and if it comes away without too much pressure on the fruit then I know it’s perfectly ripe. I wash them and pop them in a container in the freezer, and then I can save them until I have enough for a recipe. A simple, free-form galette is the perfect recipe for using my frozen raspberries in a pudding that is so versatile – you can use all sorts of fruit and even make savoury versions too – and yet it’s still delicious and feels like a treat. I’m certainly not an expert in pastry, but this one I’ve mastered – it is a doddle!
Not only is it super versatile, but it’s also very forgiving. The pastry can crack while it’s being rolled and it really doesn’t matter. The juice can seep out of the side during cooking and it just adds to the rustic appeal! What matters is that it’s fun to make, really simple, and ultimately delicious! I’ve used sweet cicely in this recipe as I had some with my Totally Wild veg box and it has a nice anise flavour, but it would work just as well with other herbs such as thyme or lavender.
If you don’t want to use raspberries, or just want to change things up, then anything goes with a galette recipe, Once you’ve got the hang of the pastry, it’s really easy to switch up the fillings. The main things are to keep the pastry nice and crumbly, use ice cold butter and water, and if your filling is going to be runny, use nuts or flour to protect the bottom of your pastry from getting too soggy. I’ve given tips in the method below for how I’ve done that for this recipe. Other seasonal ideas for fillings could be strawberry and elderflower, cherry and almond, or try savoury asparagus or mushroom versions (just take out the sugar). Later in the year I can see myself making one with blackberry and apple, and maybe even a chestnut and squash version for winter. The opportunities are really endless!
Raspberry Galette with Sweet Cicely Recipe
For the pastry:
- 170g unsalted butter
- 190g plain flour
- 2 tbsp caster sugar
- 3-4 tbsp water cooled with ice cubes
- Pinch salt
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 tbsp coarse sugar such as demerara sugar
For the raspberry filling:
- 50g almonds
- 350g raspberries
- 2 tbsp chopped sweet cicely (or try thyme or lavender – both work really well)
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 3 tbsp caster sugar
- 1 tsp butter chopped into cubes
- Place the butter for the pastry in the freezer for about 30 minutes before making the dough.
- Line baking tray or sheet with baking paper.
- Blitz the almonds in food processor and set aside in a bowl.
- To make the pastry dough, combine the flour, salt and caster sugar in a food processor. Add the cold butter and mix until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Add the water one tablespoon at a time until the dough is starting to come together, but still very crumbly. Check this by squeezing the crumbly mix together in your hands – if it stays together then your dough is ready for kneading. My pastry usually comes together after 3 tbsp.
- Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly until it comes into a ball, but take care not to overwork it as you don’t want it to become too warm. Place it on a sheet of baking paper, pat down and roll to more of a disc shape and refrigerate for 2 hours. Pre-rolling it like this will make it a bit easier to roll out fully offer the dough has chilled instead of starting from a ball.
- While the dough is chilling, prepare your raspberries. Combine the fruit with the sweet cicely (or your herbs of choice). Add in the caster sugar and allow to macerate until the dough is ready.
- After the 2 hours, get the pastry dough out of the fridge and roll out on the baking paper until it’s about 30cm in diameter, and about ½ cm thick. Don’t worry about the pastry cracking at the edges at this point because this is a rustic dish, but it also wont be as obvious when you fold the edges into the middle. Spread the flour over the pastry base and sprinkle over the chopped almonds. This will help to avoid the bottom getting soggy as the galette is cooking. Pour the raspberries into the middle of the pastry and spread to within just over 5cm of the edge. Fold the edges of the pastry over the edges of the raspberry filling to create your crust and pinch together any areas that look like they’re splitting especially at corners where filling can start to spill out. Dot the pieces of butter over the visible filling – this will make the fruit nice and glossy. Brush the pastry with the beaten egg and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Chill again for 20 minutes before baking.
- While the assembled galette is chilling, preheat oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/350°F/Gas Mark 4.
- Bake the galette in the middle of the oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until the filling is cooked and the pastry is golden.
As always let me know what you think of the recipe in the comments and if you have any questions don’t hesitate to get in touch – I love hearing from you!
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