Chard Galette with Herbed Ricotta and Goat Cheese

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I didn't exactly kill it in this year's garden. Well, actually I did, just in the literal sense, not in the "I WIN!" sense. It's really my own damned fault. I started out with the best of intentions and a boatload of lovingly tended seedlings ready to put down roots, but it was one thing after another and by the time I got around to planting them, it was a month too late and they were so stressed, they kind of went belly up. I got zero zucchini—that's ZERO, if you can imagine anyone not being able to grow zucchini—a few measly peppers, and one anemic eggplant. The herbs did okay though, especially my basil, which was EPIC. I mean, leaves as big as my hand. And then the Japanese beetles decimated the entire crop almost overnight. One day, I had a enough basil to keep an entire continent in pesto for year. The next morning, the beetles were lounging around on a bunch of denuded stems, and it was "Check please! So long and thanks for all the basil!"  Le sigh…

But it's not a complete horror show, thankfully. Herbs aside, my Earthboxes didn't fail me (they never do) so my San Marzanos are thriving, despite my best efforts to kill them through benign neglect. And then there's the chard. Woo boy, do I have chard. Chard is my zucchini. Everyone I meet, it's "Would you like some chard? No, really, take some chard. JUST TAKE THE DAMNED CHARD!" Mysterious care packages are showing up on my neighbors' doorsteps, courtesy of the chard fairy. I'm drowning in chard.

So what does one do with such bounty? One would do well to bake this galette, that's what. And I do. A LOT. Because not only does it require a lots of chard, but it's really, really good. And I'm not just saying that because I want you to email me for some of my chard surplus. It's good. In fact, it's not just good, it's exceptional. And you need to bake one pronto.

I love galettes of any stripe. For one thing, they're always pretty easy. For another, you can make one with just about anything. But most importantly, they're RUSTIC. Meaning you can completely screw it up, looks-wise, and no one will know. Odd folds, cracks, drips, major leaks, whatever…those are the things that make galettes so endearing. "It's RUSTIC! It's supposed to look that way!"

Regardless of what it looks like, though, it's all about taste and this one, as I said, is exceptional. It's loaded with so many good things. The crust has a bit of crunch from cornmeal and it's filled with caramelized onions, sun-dried tomatoes, ricotta, fresh herbs, CHARD, topped with tangy chunks of goat cheese, brushed with an egg wash and baked to perfection. It's great hot from the oven, cooled down a bit, or even cold. I've had it for dinner, for lunch and even for breakfast (why not?) It's rich, tangy, full of flavor and so, so satisfying. And with all of those veggies, it's good for you too, right? 

Aside from the chard, I used my herbs and last year's crop of San Marzano tomatoes that I seasoned and dried, plus homemade ricotta, but if you don't have a garden or if you killed yours like I did this year, of course, store-bought is just fine. And if you have trouble finding chard, you know who to call. 

Chard Galette with Herbed Ricotta and Goat Cheese

Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 cup white whole-wheat flour, plus more for rolling
  • 1/2 cup fine yellow cornmeal
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 cup ice water

Filling

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 large onions, sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 large bunch chard, stems removed, leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar or white-wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
  • 1 large egg, beaten, for brushing

Directions

  1. To make the crust, place the flour, cornmeal and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times until combined. Add in the butter pieces and continue pulsing until incorporate—it should look a bit like sand. With the processor running, slowly add the ice water and process until the dough comes together in a ball. Don't over mix.

  2. Turn the dough out onto a work surface, gather together into a ball, then flatten into a disk, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for about 1 hour. (You can also prepare the dough up to 3 days ahead.

  3. To make the filling, add oil to a large skillet and heat on medium-high. Add the onions and salt and cook until the onions are starting to brown. Add 2 tablespoons of water, turn the heat to medium-low and continue to cook until the onions are caramel colored, about 20 minutes, stirring frequently to avoid burning.
  4. When the onions have caramelized, add the vinegar and stir for about 1 minute. Then add the chopped chard and cook until tender, stirring occasionally, about 3–5 minutes. Transfer the cooked vegetables to a bowl and let rest for about 20 minutes until the mixture is at room temperature.
  5. Let the dough rest, unwrapped, for about 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  6. Drain off any liquid from the vegetable, then mix in the egg, ricotta, sun-dried tomatoes, 2 teaspoons each of the chopped thyme and oregano, pepper and salt.
  7. Dust a sheet of parchment lightly with flour, then roll the dough out into a 14" circle. Place the dough on the parchment onto a baking sheet.
  8. Spoon the veggie/cheese mixture over the dough, leaving about a 2" border. Dot the goat cheese on top and sprinkle on the remaining thyme and oregano.
  9. Fold the edges of the dough over the filling, leaving most of the filling exposed. Brush the beaten egg over the crust.
  10. Bake for about 35-40 minutes, until the crust is golden and the filling is bubbling hot. Let rest a bit before slicing.

Recipe Source: EatingWell.com