Cookbook author Martha Rose Shulman says savory pies are a great opportunity to eat plants without using the V word.
“I wish that wasn’t a word because it implies there’s this country called Vegetaria,” she tells Good Food host Evan Kleiman below.
“Really, it just doesn’t happen to have meat in it.”
But savory pies can be filled with lots of other things – from cheese to custard to legumes.
This Greens and Chickpea Galette uses a yeasted whole wheat pastry crust. Shulman says to roll it out thinly and then chill it so you don’t get a “bready pie”.
Which sounds adorable, and maybe like what they’d serve in Vegetaria.
Greens and Chickpea Galette
(Reprinted from The Simple Art of Vegetarian Cooking by Martha Rose Shulman. © 2014 by Martha Rose Shulman. By permission of Rodale Books. Available wherever books are sold.)
Use robust greens for this large galette–kale, collards, or mustard greens. You can even use the bagged Southern greens mix that they sell at supermarkets, which are already stemmed and washed. The filling has Middle Eastern overtones, with lots of well-cooked onion and the Middle Eastern blend of thyme, sesame, and ground sumac called za’atar. You can prepare the filling while the pastry dough is rising.
Yeasted Whole Wheat Olive Oil Pastry
MAKES ENOUGH FOR ONE 9- OR 10-INCH DOUBLE-CRUSTED TORTE, ONE GALETTE, OR TWO 9- OR 10-INCH TARTS
This is hands-down my favorite savory pie crust. It’s incredibly easy to make (one of the reasons I love it so much). Yeasted crusts are less rich and more rustic than French-style short crusts and they’re easier to manipulate; they don’t crack and tear. You don’t need to bake fully before you fill them, as you do with quiche pastry. If you fully prebake the pastry it will burn when you bake the pie.
Remember to roll this thin so that it doesn’t become too bready, and freeze it if you aren’t using it right away.
7 grams active dry yeast (approximately 2 scant teaspoons)
110 grams lukewarm water (approximately 1/2 cup)
2 grams sugar (approximately 1/2 scant teaspoon)
55 grams egg, at room temperature, beaten (1 extra large egg)
50 grams extra virgin olive oil (approximately 1/4 cup)
125 grams whole wheat flour (approximately 1 cup)
125 grams unbleached all-purpose flour (approximately 1 cup), or more as needed; or use 250 grams (approximately 2 cups) whole wheat flour and omit all-purpose
5 grams fine sea salt (approximately rounded 3/4 teaspoon)
1. In the large bowl of a stand mixer (with the paddle attachment), dissolve the yeast in the water, add the sugar, and allow to sit until the mixture is creamy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the egg and olive oil. Combine the flours and salt, and stir into the yeast mixture. Work the dough until it comes together in a coherent mass, adding flour as necessary. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently, adding flour as necessary, just until the dough is smooth; do not overwork the dough or it will be too tough. Shape into a ball. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise in a draft-free spot until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
2. If making single-crusted pies, lightly oil two 9- or 10-inch tart pans or cake pans with olive oil. If making a double-crusted torte, oil just 1 pan. If making a galette, line a backing sheet with parchment. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead a couple of times just to deflate. For pies, divide into 2 equal pieces; for a torte, separate out two-thirds for the bottom and one-third for the top; for a galette, keep as one piece. Shape each piece into a ball without kneading it. Cover the dough loosely with plastic wrap and let rest for 5 minutes.
3. Roll the dough out into thin round(s) and line pans as directed in the recipe. If not using right away, line pans or roll out flat, double wrap in plastic, and freeze to prevent the dough from rising and becoming too bready. The dough can be transferred directly from the freezer to the oven.
ADVANCE PREPARATION: Once rolled out, the dough will keep for a month in the freezer, well wrapped.
NOTE: If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can work the ingredients by hand using a whisk and a wooden spoon.
Mediterranean Vegetable Galette Template
MAKES ONE 9- OR 10-INCH GALETTE, SERVING 8 GENEROUSLY
Galettes are beautiful free-form pies. I use the entire dough recipe for the crust and roll it out to one big round, 16 to 18 inches in diameter. The filling should not be runny, so it usually contains no milk, though it does usually contain a couple of eggs.
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Greens and Chickpeas filling (see below)
2 to 4 ounces cheese (shredded Gruyere, a mix of Gruyere and Parmesan, or crumbled feta – use feta for the Greens and Chickpeas Galette)
Yeasted Whole Wheat Olive Oil Pastry, in one large piece (see above)
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon milk or water for egg wash
1. Beat the eggs in a large bowl and add salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the vegetable filling and cheese.
2. Dust a large work surface with flour and turn out the dough. Shape into a ball and let rest for 5 minutes. Then roll out into a thin round, 16 to 18 inches in diameter. If the dough springs back, give it a 5-minute rest, then continue. Line a baking sheet pan with parchment and place the round in the middle, with the dough edges overlapping the pan edges.
3. Place the filling in the middle of the pastry and spread it to a circle, leaving a 3- or 4-inch margin all the way around. Fold the pastry edges in over the filling, pleating them to cover the filling and drawing them up to the middle of the galette, so that the filling is enclosed. The finished galette should be 9 or 10 inches in diameter. There can be a small circle of exposed filling in the middle but it shouldn’t be more than an inch in diameter. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. This helps the galette retain its shape when you bake it.
4. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 375°F. Remove the galette from the freezer and brush the pastry with egg wash. Bake until golden brown, 45 to 50 minutes. Let sit for at least 15 minutes before serving.
ADVANCE PREPARATION: The galette keeps for a couple of days and is good cold or reheated. They freeze well, before or after baking, for up to a month. Double-wrap in plastic before freezing. When ready to use: If frozen before baking, unwrap and transfer directly from the freezer to the preheated oven; increase baking time by 15 minutes. If baked before freezing, unwrap and thaw overnight in the refrigerator, at room temperature for a couple of hours, or in a 350°F oven for about 30 minutes. Once thawed, reheat in a 300°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
Greens and Chickpea Filling
MAKES ENOUGH FILLING FOR ONE 9- TO 10-INCH GALETTE, SERVING 8 GENEROUSLY
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, quartered lengthwise and cut into thin slices across the grain
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 pounds sturdy greens, stemmed and washed (or a 1-pound bag of Southern greens mix), wilted and coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint, dill, or parsley
2 teaspoons za’atar (see Note)
1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed; or 11/2 cups cooked chickpeas
1. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large, heavy skillet. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until soft and golden, about 10 minutes. After the first couple of minutes of cooking, add a generous pinch of salt so they don’t brown too quickly or stick to the pan. When the onions are nicely colored and soft, add the garlic and continue to cook until fragrant, another 30 seconds to 1 minute. Stir in the greens and combine well with the onions. Add the chopped fresh herbs and za’atar, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in the chickpeas and taste and adjust seasonings.
2. Use the filling in the Mediterranean Vegetable Galette template (above), using 3 to 4 ounces crumbled feta cheese.
NOTE: To make your own za’atar, mix together 2 tablespoons dried thyme, 11/2 teaspoons sesame seeds, 11/2 teaspoons sumac, and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Keep in a jar.
ADVANCE PREPARATION: The filling can be made up to 4 days ahead and kept in the refrigerator. The assembled galette can be frozen for up to a month. Double wrap with plastic wrap before freezing. Transfer directly from the freezer to the oven for baking; increase baking time by 10 to 15 minutes.