Some people want to visit San Francisco to see the mystique of the beautiful and epochal Golden Gate Bridge. Or to experience vertigo riding the city’s cable car system.
I want to go to San Francisco so I can eat at Chez Panisse.
Chez Panisse…sigh! The Berkeley-based, world-renowned restaurant started by the equally iconic Alice Waters. It feels so wonderful and velvety off the tongue just to say it. Uttering those two words automatically elevates you. Chez Panisse…I already feel at least an inch taller.
Even my cell phone knows about the legend of Chez Panisse.
Allow me to explain…
You know that pesky auto-correct feature most smart phones have these days? You may have seen, on Facebook or through email forwards, some of the more ‘unfortunate’ (read hilariously funny and inappropriate) ones.
Well, I am no stranger to autocorrect either. I practically develop Tourette Syndrome at times, and I’m just trying to pound out 5 words or so. Once I was driving and asked Alexia, who was 10 at the time, to text a message for me using my phone’s microphone feature and the phone ended up ‘translating’ a couple of benign words right into profanity. We had a good laugh! We then said the same phrase again and the phone again gave us potty mouths.
So here I am, with this phone that seems to have its own issues with Tourettes AND that can’t seem to nail simple words like ‘late’ or ‘wait,’ right? And yet, it can surprise me.
I was at a red light yesterday and used the microphone feature of my cell to text myself a thought I wanted to include for this post. As I spoke into the phone, I included the words Chez Panisse. I remember smiling as I even said those two words because I was thinking…’Ha! I wonder what kind of crazy spelling this phone’s going to come up with.’ But then I looked down and my phone had NAILED it! It even included the capital letters and everything! Can’t seem to understand words like ‘morning,’ but it knew Chez Panisse. Go figure.
I guess that’s why they call it a smart phone. Of sorts.
This sumptuous apple galette, brimming with the zesty flavor of lemon and the brightness of apricots, is a well-known Chez Panisse dessert. And no wonder. It has become one of my standbys and seems to disappear the moment it hits the table.
making apple galette
Start by preparing the savory pie crust. CLICK HERE FOR 4-INGREDIENT RECIPE (and that includes water!). This can be done 1 hour ahead or 2 days ahead. Just make sure you wrap the dough very well in clear plastic wrap so that it doesn’t dry out. Refrigerate the dough until you are ready to use it.
Then, roll it out between two sheets of parchment paper into approximately an 1/8-inch-thick round. I use a large, unrimmed pizza pan that’s 15 inches across as a guide to create the round.
Gently remove the top sheet of parchment.
Place an inverted pizza pan (or baking sheet) on the uncovered dough and…
gently flip it directly on the pizza pan.
Once again, gently remove the second parchment paper from the dough. Place in the refrigerator to chill for 15 minutes.
Preheat oven to 450°F. While the dough is chilling, prepare 1 ½ pounds of Granny Smith or Gala apples by coring, peeling and slicing them. (I’ve tried using both varietals and found that I prefer the Granny Smith in this dessert.)
Then, place them in a medium bowl with 2 tablespoons sugar and the zest of an entire lemon.
and mix well. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and cover the center of the round with ¼ cup of apricot preserve, leaving 1 – 1 ½ of the border plain. Starting from the outermost circle, begin to arrange the apple slices in concentric circles. Overlap them slightly.
You’ll typically create 3 overlapping circles of apple slices and then be able to fill the center with a few more slices. Once you’re done with the outermost circle, start in on the next one.
And the next one.
Then fill the center with additional apple slices.
Gently fold the crust to create a rustic border.
Until it looks like this.
Brush the crust with milk and sprinkle the edges and the apples with 2 tablespoons sugar.
Place in the oven and lower the temperature to 425°F. Bake for 20 minutes. Then, reduce the temperature to 375°F and continue baking until the crust is nice and golden, about 30 minutes longer. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 30 minutes or so. at least 10 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve. Makes 8 servings.