Weekends and Figs

I generally work on weekends. It’s something I’ve come to terms with only because I know it won’t last forever. I write. I bake. But those two things don’t always pay the bills, so I work retail on the weekends and dream of the day when I’ll have a Sunday like this one:

or this one:

Have you seen this book, Sundays are for Lovers? It’s the kind of little book you can have by your bed side and just keep glancing at and it makes you happy. It’s curated by MAV (maria alexandra vettese) 1/2 of the blog, 3191 miles apart and features writers like Molly Wizenburg, photographers like Jonathan Levitt and artists/designers including Deb Wood and Lena Corwin. It’s a veritable visual smorgasbord of what a sensual Sunday is all about. There is a photo or illustration accompanying each contributor and then they’re asked to answer a few simple prompts about their Sundays. From spicy Bloody Mary’s and grits to dreaming about a house by the sea and sitting on the stoop in the evening…this is Sunday encapsulated.

So I thought it’d be fun to answer the prompts, too as I thought about Sundays when I’m not waking up and putting on my practical shoes so I can stand and talk to customers all. day. long. These are my Sundays to come. I encourage you to make a Sunday list. It could be your current Sunday list…or maybe it’s your Sundays to come. Share it here if you’d like. I’d love to hear yours.

My home base is: just north of San Francisco
Day to day I work as: freelance writer
If I didn’t do this I would: bake
Next year I will travel to: the South (Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina)
To me Sunday means: catching up with friends and family, brunch, the New York Times
And I like to eat: poached eggs on toast. Or jammy scones. And strong coffee.
And I will get out of bed: 9
And get dressed around: 3
And I will smile about: the morning light, broken-in slippers, my favorite mug, possibility.
And I just may daydream about: spooning
And when Monday comes: I’ll answer work emails and make some more coffee

Thankfully, even when I’m working I still find time to bake. And these are the most perfect Sunday treat ever. They’re honestly a cinch to put together–the components themselves take a little time which is o.k. on a Sunday when you may be putzing around the house in the morning. It’s a dessert you’ll look forward to in the evening, and by now you know how I like to eat baked goods for breakfast. So I’d encourage that, too. These galettes make the house smell like a dream. Even if you have big weekend plans, you may not want to leave.

Rustic Fig and Almond Cream Galette

Rustic Fig and Almond Cream Galette

  • Yield: Five 5-inch galettes
  • Prep time: 30 mins
  • Cook time: 50 mins
  • Inactive time: 3 hrs
  • Total time: 4 hrs 20 mins

For this recipe, I used a very common and traditional pate brisee recipe for the galette crust and Tartine Bakery’s recipe for Frangipane Almond Cream. I love the combination of the beautiful, ripe figs with the slightly sweet almond cream and the flaky, butter crust. While the directions appear lengthy at first, this is really a very simple fall dessert. And it’s versatile: you could do this with stone fruit or berries in the summer, and I’m looking forward to trying it with apples.

Ingredients

Galette Dough:

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold, in small cubes
3-5 tablespoons ice water

Filling:

12 ripe black Mission figs, de-stemmed and sliced horizontally (4-5 slices per fig)
1 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup sugar
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
pinch salt
1 large egg
1 tablespoon whole milk
1 egg (for egg wash)
sugar (for dusting)

Instructions

Begin by making the galette dough: Place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Add the cubes of butter and quickly pulse until the pieces of butter are about the size of large peas. Add the ice water through the feed tube while using long pulses until the dough comes together and sticks together when you squeeze it inbetween two fingertips. Add 1 or 2 tablespoons more water if the mixture is too crumbly.

Turn the dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap and pat into a round disk. Wrap tightly and chill for at least 2 hours and up to 4 days.

Next, make the almond cream: In a food processor, combine the almonds with 2 tablespoons of the sugar and process until finely ground. Set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy. Add the remaining sugar (1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons) and mix to incorporate. Add the almond-sugar mixture and beat until thoroughly combined. Add the salt and the egg and mix until incorporated. Then, add the milk and mix until light and fluffy. Note: You should have about 1/4 – 1/2 cup of the almond frangipane leftover. It stores well for up to a week; don’t be tempted to use it all in the galettes or they’ll tend to overflow and

Now, assemble the galettes:
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and slice into 4 even triangles*. Flour your work surface and your rolling pin. Beginning with one piece of dough, quickly form it into a round shape using your hands. With a rolling pin, roll out into a 7-8 inch rounds, about 1/4-inch thick. Don’t worry if they’re not perfectly round–it doesn’t matter. Place each dough round on lined baking sheet.

Spoon 2 tablespoons almond frangipane in the center of each dough circle and arrange the figs concentrically in the center, leaving a 2-inch border around the edge. You can allow the figs to overlap. Lift the pastry edge and fold over filling to make a nice, crimped border–again, doesn’t have to be perfect. Once galettes are assembled, place in refrigerator for 1 hour (this helps with the flakiness of the dough).

Preheat the oven to 375 F. After the dough has chilled for 1 hour, remove from the refrigerator and prepare the egg wash: Whisk egg in a small bowl to make egg wash, and use it to brush the edges of the crust of each galette; sprinkle the sides of the crust with sugar.

Bake for 50-55 minutes, until figs are bubbling slightly and edges are golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool at least 30 minutes. Top with whipped cream or mascarpone and honey if you’d like.

Comments

  1. Elizabeth

    Beautiful. Sunday to me means time with my husband and kids spent outside. Now more than ever I want to cherish these days. Hot coffee in hand and dreams of the possibility in mind.

  2. Danielle

    Gorgeous galettes!! I've never really spent time thinking about my 'ideal' Sunday, although I've had a fair share of pre-Monday blues when Sunday evening rolls around. All the same, these questions are fun....

    My home base is: Mountain View, CA
    Day to day I work as: blogger/freelance photographer
    If I didn’t do this I would: do yoga
    Next year I will travel to: hopefully Asia, specifically Japan and Thailand
    To me Sunday means: Farmers' Market, lazy lunch, chilling with M
    And I like to eat: pain au chocolat, or homemade pancakes, or an omelette - washed down with espresso
    And I will get out of bed: whenever I feel like it
    And get dressed around: whenever I feel like it
    And I will smile about: M's tousled-hair look, the way the light falls on the trees outside our bedroom window
    And I just may daydream about: taking a road-trip through France
    And when Monday comes: I do yoga and start making a new to-do list for the week.

  3. Angharad

    What a lovely idea! I want to fill one of those out and day dream about sundays all day long on this dreary monday! That book sounds super wonderful too...all out shined by the galette though. Wow.

  4. Janet

    What a beautiful tart! I've been dreaming of fig things since those two great fig pizzas we had recently. That book looks lovely, too.

    My answers:

    My home base is: San Francisco
    Day to day I work as: Community Manager for a mobile social network
    If I didn’t do this I would: write, write, write. Or work in an ice cream store. :)
    Next year I will travel to: Thailand, I hope, and New York. And Portland. And maybe Chicago, too.
    To me Sunday means: going to the gym and the Farmers Market. Making something tasty, hopefully seeing friends, reading. Lazing around.
    And I like to eat: Eggs - poached or scrambled, toast or potatoes with onions. Occasionally a fun pancake. Fruit.
    And I will get out of bed: If I'm going to the gym: 8ish. If I'm not: never, or when I get hungry enough to get out of bed for a few minutes before getting back into bed.
    And get dressed around: Late morning. Ish.
    And I will smile about: carrying flowers back from the Farmers Market, the fact that it's not Monday.
    And I just may daydream about: sharing my Sunday with someone else.
    And when Monday comes: I'll stay in bed as long as I can, or walk to work.

  5. shannalee

    Beautiful! I love figs and really enjoy seeing new things to do with them. Your pictures are stunning.

    As far as working weekends - Meg, you're awesome. I wholeheartedly support doing a weekend job so you can do what you actually want to do the rest of the week. And you're right: this is just for now. Inspiring!

    OK, my Sunday list:

    My home base is: just southwest of Chicago
    Day to day I work as: a freelance writer!
    If I didn’t do this I would: own a restaurant
    Next year I will travel to: who knows!
    To me Sunday means: fellowship, worship, time to rest
    And I like to eat: a quick morning breakfast and a leisurely, wonderful lunch
    And I will get out of bed: earlier than any other day of the week
    And get dressed around: 7:30 AM
    And I will smile about: that way that Sundays have of reminding me of Providence and purpose and my part in a bigger plan
    And I just may daydream about: the person I miss the most
    And when Monday comes: I'll get back to business

  6. Megabite

    My home base is: a suburb of Detroit
    Day to day I work as: Associate Art Director, and always try to get food in the magazines
    If I didn’t do this I would: work in a bakery or small cafe making mini desserts
    Next year I will travel to: Paris! But maybe more realistically New York, but maybe even more realistically Florida.
    To me Sunday means: Making bread or anything too time consuming for a weekday, walking Elliot (my dog) and napping during SVU marathons.
    And I like to eat: Pancakes and Cinnamon Rolls.
    And I will get out of bed: around 9ish.
    And get dressed around: noon-ish
    And I will smile about: the sun and 2 dollar beers
    And I just may daydream about: having fun sunday plans that include things like berry picking and going out to breakfast.
    And when Monday comes: I'll get up earlier and walk Elliot and finally get to eat dinner with my boyfriend.

  7. Anna

    This book sounds lovely and makes me envious because I also work on weekends. I dream of having weekends off or at least sunday.
    My home base is: St Paul MN (only since august)
    Day to day I work as: a waitress and I make bags to sell
    If I didn’t do this I would: keep sewing, but also farming, and bread baking
    Next year I will travel to: Montana and maybe farther west
    To me Sunday means: relaxing, cooking, listening to NPR, brunch with friends, afternoons of books or movies
    And I like to eat: waffles, or homemade sticky buns
    And I will get out of bed: after I've stayed in bed, sleepy but awake for a while
    And get dressed around:after breakfast
    And I will smile about: the luxury of a day with no plans that have to happen, just whatever we feel like doing, spending time with Ray
    And I just may daydream about: our someday farm
    And when Monday comes: I'll eat yogurt and granola and get back to work

  8. Lis

    Those are gorgeous and a great reminder to get to know figs better. Thanks for the recipe and for the book recommendation!

    Lis

  9. Maddie

    I just love finding out about things -- books, albums, movies, whatever -- that leave me feeling inspired. It's really crucial when you spend your weekdays at a soul-sucking day job (ahem) or you have to spend your Sundays working. Hopes, goals and fresh ideas keep you striving for the next baking session, and for an eventual Sunday when your time is your own!

  10. Janae Monir

    I love this post, and I can totally relate to it because I work retail on the weekends too (for the extra cash), but baking and writing are where my heart is. For the first time in a LONG time, I have this Saturday AND Sunday off, and I couldn't be more excited. So this Sunday list is extra fun for me to do:

    My home base is: Southern Califorina (Orange County)
    Day to day I work as: blogger/salesperson
    If I didn’t do this I would: write books (working on it!)
    Next year I will travel to: haven't decided yet, maybe New York
    To me Sunday means: a big breakfast, visiting with family, napping, and a long meditation
    And I like to eat: hash browns, eggs and fruit
    And I will get out of bed: 8-9
    And get dressed around: 10
    And I will smile about: having nothing to do and nowhere to be.
    And I just may daydream about: autumn
    And when Monday comes: I'll smile fondly when I think of Sunday.

    Btw, I've always been hesitant to bake with figs, but your galette recipe looks simple and really, really good. I may just give it a try, thanks!

  11. Dana

    Love this Megan! I wish I could spend a Sunday with you. One of these days!

    My home base is: Seattle
    Day to day I work as: a mom and sometime caterer
    If I didn’t do this I would: read, cook, bake, knit
    Next year I will travel to: Hawaii and Delaware
    To me Sunday means: entertaining my boys while my husband goes for a bike ride
    And I like to eat: cereal and a coffee at our favorite shop
    And I will get out of bed: 7
    And get dressed around: 8
    And I will smile about: taking my boys to the farmers market in the rain and watching their faces as they listen to music and eat an apple
    And I just may daydream about: sleeping in
    And when Monday comes: I'll have more free time and a great yoga class!

  12. Dana

    Everyone seems to be eating figs lately. I'm getting jealous, I'm going to have to endeavor harder to find some that look liek their worth eating.

    My home base is: Winnipeg, Manitoba (Woohoo!)
    Day to day I work as: a full time student, part time nanny, part time assistant...
    If I didn’t do this I would: maybe have a big girl job, ha ha. I'll graduate one day!
    Next year I will travel to: Hawaii, it's planned!
    To me Sunday means: staying in bed to cuddle, finishing the weekend's homework, a meal or two that I've been wishing for all week but haven't had the time to make.
    And I like to eat: a smoothie for breakfast, Sunday suppers are something you save your appetite for
    And I will get out of bed: 10-11
    And get dressed around: when I get out of the shower
    And I will smile about: staying in bed to snuggle
    And I just may daydream about: finishing the renovations soon
    And when Monday comes: I’ll be back at school!

  13. Cheryl

    If you come down here on a Sunday, I shall make you pastries, and then we can see who will eat them the fastest.

    By the way, I was inspired by that very same Tartine frangipane recipe exactly 2 years ago but I pistachioized it and paired it with... figs.

    Also, yesterday, a Sunday, I ate poached eggs on toast. Coincidence, or kismet? You decide, and while you are reflecting, please pass me another slice.

    1. megang

      Cheryl-Your comments always make me legitimately smile (vs. non legitimate smiles, I suppose). Anyway, how funny about the tarts! I just went to check out your pistachio-ized version and it looks awesome! Great minds...

  14. Staci Shultz

    My home base is: Middle Georgia, but I spend time in NY
    Day to day I work as: English professor
    If I didn’t do this I would: Be a travel writer
    Next year I will travel to: San Francisco, NY, British Virgin Islands, Colorado
    To me Sunday means: If I'm by myself, it means yoga; granola, fruit, and yogurt; grading/writing in a coffee shop; and phone dates. If I'm with my partner, it means sleeping in and then listening to music while he makes pancakes, mimosas, and coffee.
    And I like to eat: See above.
    And I will get out of bed: 8:30 if in GA; later if in NY. :)
    And get dressed around: See above.
    And I will smile about: Snuggling.
    And I just may daydream about: Not having to get on a plane later that night...
    And when Monday comes: I'll embrace the week ahead, and perhaps quietly count down to the next weekend...

  15. Kelsey/TheNaptimeChef

    Fantastic and lovely. My sundays are up at 7am with a toddler... BUT they used to be more dreamy and will be again. though, in a way, eating syrupy pancakes with a toddler is really fun, too.

  16. Rachael

    who can't commend you on working the dreaded retail- even 2 days a week. it's hell, let's admit it. but, seeing that light at the end of the tunnel is the most important part. it doesn't have to be sunday...it just has to be ONE day...sundays for me are filled with laundry, errands, major dog parking and generally organizing for the week ahead. but, saturdays....now thats something to look forward to. heres my "sunday but it's really saturday" list:

    My home base is: where my loved ones are. where the real hugs are at.
    Day to day I work as: a technical analyst (whew)
    If I didn’t do this I would: cook.
    Next year I will travel to: NY, SF, Lake Tahoe, Las Vegas, Humboldt County, CA
    To me Sunday means: getting up early for some quiet time in my robe, with coffee, before the dog needs a walk. watching sherman's joy to get an extra long walk, snuggling, cooking breakfast with matt, and leisurely eating it. good books. writing. cooking something fantastic for dinner. bad reality tv.
    And I like to eat: frittata or crepes...i love to make my "arduous" meals on "sunday". it's nice to take time in the kitchen.
    And I will get out of bed: 645
    And get dressed around: 9
    And I will smile about: pretty much everything
    And I just may daydream about: a paid day off
    And when Monday comes: i'll wake up early....and smile

  17. MomGordon

    May I just tell everyone that the these galettes, particularly the pastry, were to die for!! My Sunday looks a lot like Monday, or maybe Thursday but what makes me smile any day is seeing Megan in the kitchen getting ready to bake something delicious.

  18. Erin (Blue Egg Kitchen)

    What a lovely post, so artfully capturing the quiet joy of Sundays. And I love, love, love figs.

    My home base is: San Francisco
    Day to day I work as: a lawyer
    If I didn’t do this I would: seek out beautiful, honest food from small family farms
    Next year I will travel to: Italy in the fall
    To me Sunday means: a picnic with my husband and daughter, a braise in the oven, putzing around the kitchen in my PJs
    And I like to eat: eggs over easy, tomatoes with chunky sea salt, and fresh goat cheese
    And I will get out of bed: 7:30
    And get dressed around: noon
    And I will smile about: the hour spent as a family cuddling in bed before we got up, being together all day long
    And I just may daydream about: writing
    And when Monday comes: I get one more day off with my little girl, but miss my husband

  19. Mary

    So enjoy reading all your posts but this one ranks among the best. Pictures and words pop off the page. Have a blast @ the Baking Institute!

  20. Pam @ Cooking World

    I love fresh and dried figs, this looks so rustic and yummy!

    Sundays usually means to do laundry, being lazy in yard, play with my kids and catch up on reading and do some blog commenting.

  21. Judy

    We don't get figs here, only dried. Wait, we do, but they cost an arm and a leg. Sometimes, that's okay, but sometimes, I'd rather have my arm. Speaking of galettes, I should make some soon, before the whole world passes me by. they're beautiful, and yours are heavenly. it's my first comment here! so i think it quite apt, to let's say hello this way:

    My home base is: Singapore
    Day to day I work as: a web editor
    If I didn’t do this I would: travel the world
    Next year I will travel to: eygpt, israel, germany, europe, bali
    To me Sunday means: eggs. brunch. sunlight. staying wrapped up in bed, cuddling. sleeping till noon, and then waking up and the TV is still on.
    And I will get out of bed: with messy hair
    And get dressed around: by putting on boxers
    And I will smile about: the sleep i just had
    And I just may daydream about: the things i will do next
    And when Monday comes: i'll still be happy

    1. megang

      Hi Judy! Thanks for taking the time to comment and introduce yourself. Love the "I'll still be happy" on Monday--a good sign you're in the right field :)

  22. Delishhh

    Love it. I am always looking for new things to do with figs and i just love this idea. I think your blog is great.

  23. Joy

    Those are such beautiful galettes! Mmm, that's the problem with having fellow food loving friends, you will always be hankering for whatever they're having. LOL.

    I'm in love with the concept of the book. And as soon as I get my bookshelves in order, I'm buying it! For now, my Sundays and I:

    My home base is: suburb of Vancouver, BC where it gets more snow when it snows, and the difference in weather is a matter of a 5-mile distance!
    Day to day I work as: web designer/developer
    If I didn’t do this I would: travel, travel, travel, see friends and live to tell the tales of laughter and conversation among kindred souls
    Next year I will travel to: I can't believe I'm committing to this now -- Asia
    To me Sunday means: a lingering morning of books and magazines, cooking and baking, at least one meal with the family, and forced time away from the phone and computer
    And I like to eat: eggs Benedict, mimosa, coffee and fresh fruits
    And I will get out of bed: without an alarm...hee!
    And get dressed around: only if I'm going out. jammies, baby.
    And I will smile about: spontaneous Sundays...what to do, what to do...
    And I just may daydream about: snuggling all day by the beach
    And when Monday comes: I have leftover baked goods to tide me over hundreds of emails, voice mails and rinse, repeat.

  24. megang

    This may have been my favorite post ever as I've gotten to learn so much about you all through the comments! Thank you so much for taking the time to share your Sundays with me...
    -Joy: I'm jealous you need an alarm (I can't sleep in these days)
    -Erin: Italy in the fall (gasp!). Fabulous.
    -Rachael: I heart reality tv. Especially on Sundays.
    -Staci: Smiled when I read the part about you getting out of bed later in NY :)
    Shannalee: I love that under travel you put "who knows!" although I'm sure I'll read about a few fun excursions. Unplanned=good.
    -Janet: hooray for fun pancakes!
    -Danielle: Like the Sunday spirit in the "whenever I feel like it" response.
    -Megan: Dream big (Paris)!
    -Janae: Tell me what you think if you make the galettes. Do it! And yes to writing, too!
    -Anna: I've always wanted to go to Montana.
    -Dana (Funky Kitchen): I love that you save your appetite for a nice dinner on Sundays. Smart.
    -Dana (Treat): this is clearly why we get along. Basically baking, reading, cooking and knitting are four of my favorite things.

  25. David

    Gorgeous post. Now I know what to do with the figs that have been whispering to me at the market. I'm also a freelance writer, and also work most weekends. A good Sunday for me these days means having a little time to read food blogs or a cooking magazine, and if I'm super-lucky, a nap while dinner braises slowly in the oven.
    Cheers!

  26. Adriana from Baking Powders

    cute and delicious! i love sundays, sunday mornings, that light, breakfast, coffee, newspaper... perfection, like these galettes!

  27. starre

    these were fun to make. If I had a blog and camera i would take a picture as they turned out perfect. I weighed the dough into 4 equal pieces before wrapping and chilling... made it a breeze to roll without handling too much
    thanks for the inspiration

  28. A Canadian Foodie

    Absolutely gorgeous... when I saw the almond, I was in. Figs need a kick in the pants. Gorgeous Tart!
    My home base is: Edmonton (prairies) Alberta, Canada
    Day to day I work as: educator
    If I didn’t do this I would: be a lawyer, and event planner, an artist, a writer, a traveller
    Next year I will travel to: the Balkans (we do this every year) and Egypt in the Falland NYC in the Spring, and Vancouver island in the summer
    To me Sunday means: Sunday Suppers at our home with family and friends
    And I like to eat: crusty French bread and salted French butter, freshly squeezed orange juice, and steamy hot coffee
    And I will get out of bed: 5 or 6 am
    And get dressed around: 7am
    And I will smile about: another beautiful day, the life we have built together as a family, and thoughts of my good friends
    And I just may daydream about: retiring
    And when Monday comes: I am excited to get back to the classroom and champion my students
    :)
    Valerie

  29. Denise | Chez Danisse

    Sundays, spooning, and Rustic Fig and Almond Cream Galettes. You do know about the good things in life.

  30. antonietta

    Lovely post and Pictures! I just found your blog- what a treat!

  31. Sandy

    What a lovely post and I love this thread of comments.
    My home base is: Seattle but I really wish it were Paris.
    Day to day I work as a: Reservation Agent
    If I didn't do this I would be a: pastry chef
    Next year I will travel to : Spain and sneak into the Basque country of France
    To me Sunday means: Hot fresh brewed coffee in bed with a twiced baked almond croissant,the Sunday paper and my sweetie. Napping after the coffee and croissant and waking up with the papers strewn all over
    And I like to eat: Crusty ciabatta with any kind of homemade jam on it; good strong espresso with a biscotti on the side,small glass of fresh oj.
    And I will get out of bed: 10 or 11
    Get dressed: 1 or 2
    And I will smile about:my life,my love and the peacefulness of Sunday mornings.
    And I may just daydream about moving to the South of France.
    And when Monday I comes: I will hold onto my Sunday dreams..

  32. bob

    Just tried this, looked good, but for the insane amount of butter it just wasn't worth it. It just tasted OK nothing special
    sorry

    1. megang

      Hi Bob. So sorry you didn't enjoy the recipe...it is an insane amount of butter; you're right! This is definitely a simple, rustic recipe. Nothing fancy. So I can see where some may find it perhaps not that exciting. Next time maybe use your very favorite fruit and you could even dress it up with a streusal topping or an apricot glaze.

  33. Marcela

    Hi,
    I have made this fig's galette, and it is fantastic. I will post my version of this recipe tonight. I write in both English and Spanish; therefore, in the English version I will link it to here, but in the Spanish one, I will translate it. Thanks for this recipe!!.....Marcela

  34. Sarah

    I made this last weekend for my girls and we loved it! Hubby was out of town and we were enjoying a girls weekend. I did cheat and use puff pastry since I didn't have time to mess with making the dough. There is a picture of the girls enjoying it at: http://sarahsjoys.com/2012/09/03/21-tips-for-having-the-perfect-girls-weekend-this-fall/
    Thanks for the great recipe!

    1. megang

      Hi Sarah-Well shoot, that made my morning. Thank you so much for sending along the link to your post with those lovely photos, and for taking the time to leave a comment. And I'm so glad you enjoyed the recipe. Happy weekend! ~m

  35. Marta@What Should I Eat For Breakfast Today

    You made me think about my life with your post. I love to bake as well. And since I have so much time on my hands lately I think I need a plan to organize myself. And I'll make this galette for a start :)

  36. Mayada

    Love your post . can I use dried figs instead. :)

    1. megang

      Mayada-
      I'm sure that you can use dried figs although they won't be quite as jammy/messy which makes these galettes so nice. If you do so, just rehydrate them in some warm orange juice or water so plump them up a bit. Enjoy!

  37. Rebecca Brown

    I made this tonight. It turned out just like the pictures! It was/is delicious. True confession...I bought some pre-made pie crust at Whole Foods and made 2 larger galettes.

    1. megang

      Yay, Rebecca! So glad you enjoyed the recipe. It's one of my fall favorites: so simple and pretty and delicious (and your confession made me smile). Happy weekend, Megan

  38. Betty Berk

    Love your recipes! I would love to follow you and be able to save some of your recipes on Pinterest, but I don't see that link on your website. Any chance you will add Pinterest as a link to your website? Thanks.

    1. megang

      Hi, Betty-
      I'm not as active with it as I should be ... but here it is: http://www.pinterest.com/meganjgordon/a-sweet-spoonful/
      Glad you're enjoying the site!
      Megan

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Winter Morning Porridge

Winter Morning Porridge

I intended on baking holiday cookies to share with you today, but when I sat down to brainstorm all I could think about, truly, was the morning porridge I've been making and how that's really what I wanted to send you away with. The holiday season always seems to zoom on by at its own clip with little regard for how most of us wish it would just slow down, and this year feels like no exception. We got our tree last week and I've been making a point to sit in the living room and admire the twinkle as much as possible. I have lofty goals of snowflakes and gingerbread men and stringing cranberries and popcorn, but I'm also trying to get comfortable with the fact that everything may not get done, and that sitting amongst the twinkle is really the most important. That and a warm breakfast before the day spins into gear. This multi-grain porridge has proved to be a saving grace on busy weekday mornings, and it reheats beautifully so I've been making a big pot and bringing it to work with some extra chopped almonds and fresh pomegranate seeds. While cookies are certainly on the horizon, I think I'll have this recipe to thank for getting us through the busy days ahead. 

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Minestrone Verde with White Beans and Pesto

Minestrone Verde with White Beans and Pesto

We returned home from San Francisco on New Years Eve just in time for dinner, and craving greens -- or anything other than baked goods and pizza (ohhhh San Francisco, how I love your bakeries. And citrus. And winter sunshine).  Instead of driving straight home, we stopped at our co-op where I ran in for some arugula, an avocado, a bottle of Prosecco, and for the checkout guys to not-so-subtly mock the outlook of our New Years Eve: rousing party, eh? They looked to be in their mid-twenties and I figured I probably looked ancient to them, sad even. But really, there wasn't much sad (or rousing, to be fair) about our evening: putting Oliver to bed, opening up holiday cards and hanging them in the kitchen, and toasting the New Year with arugula, half a quesadilla and sparkling wine. It wasn't lavish. But it's what we both needed. (Or at least what we had to work with.) Since then, I've been more inspired to cook lots of "real" food versus all of the treats and appetizers and snacks the holidays always bring on. I made Julia Turshen's curried red lentils for the millionth time, a wintry whole grain salad with tuna and fennel, roasted potatoes, and this simple green minestrone that I've taken for lunch this week. Determined to fit as many seasonal vegetables into a bowl as humanly possible, I spooned a colorful pesto on top, as much for the reminder of warmer days to come as for the accent in the soup (and for the enjoyment later of slathering the leftover pesto on crusty bread).

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Curried Cauliflower Couscous with Chickpeas and Chard

Curried Cauliflower Couscous with Chickpeas and Chard

If I asked you about what you like to cook at home when the week gets busy, I'm willing to bet it might be something simple. While there are countless websites and blogs and innumerable resources to find any kind of recipe we may crave, it's often the simple, repetitive dishes that we've either grown up with or come to love that call to us when cooking (or life in general) seems overwhelming or when we're feeling depleted. While my go-to is typically breakfast burritos or whole grain bowls, this Curried Cauliflower Couscous with Chickpeas and Chard would make one very fine, very doable house meal on rotation. The adaptations are endless, and its made from largely pantry ingredients. I never thought I'd hop on the cauliflower "rice" bandwagon, but I have to say after making it a few times, I get the hype. 

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Thai Carrot, Coconut and Cauliflower Soup

Thai Carrot, Coconut and Cauliflower Soup

People describe raising young kids as a particular season in life. I hadn't heard this until we had a baby, but it brought me a lot of comfort when I'd start to let my mind wander, late at night between feedings, to fears that we'd never travel internationally again or have a sit-down meal in our dining room. Would I ever eat a cardamom bun in Sweden? Soak in Iceland? I loved the heck out of our tiny Oliver, but man what had we done?! Friends would swoop in and reassure us that this was just a season, a blip in the big picture of it all. They promised we'd likely not even remember walking around the house in circles singing made-up songs while eating freezer burritos at odd hours of the day (or night). And it's true.

Oliver is turning two next month, and those all-encompassing baby days feel like a different time, a different Us. In many ways, dare I say it, Toddlerhood actually feels a bit harder. Lately Oliver has become extremely opinionated about what he will and will not wear -- and he enforces these opinions with fervor. Don't get near the kid with a button-down shirt. This week at least. He's obsessed with his rain boots and if it were up to him, he'd keep them on at all times, especially during meals. He insists on ketchup with everything (I created a damn monster), has learned the word "trash" and insists on throwing found items away on his own that really, truly are not trash. I came to pick him up from daycare the other day and he was randomly wearing a bike helmet -- his teacher mentioned he'd had it on most of the day and really, really didn't want to take it off. The kid has FEELINGS. I love that about him, and wouldn't want it any other way. But, man it's also exhausting.

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Smoked Salmon and Crème Fraîche Tart with a Cornmeal Millet Crust

Smoked Salmon and Crème Fraîche Tart with a Cornmeal Millet Crust

It's been a uniformly gray and rainy week in Seattle, and I'd planned on making a big pot of salmon chowder to have for the weekend, but then the new issue of Bon Appetit landed on my doorstep with that inviting "Pies for Dinner" cover, and I started to think about how long it's been since I made my very favorite recipe from my cookbook, Whole Grain Mornings. I'm often asked at book events which recipe I love most, and it's a tough one to answer because I have favorites for different moods or occasions, but I'd say that this savory tart is right up there. The cornmeal millet crust is one of my party tricks; when we need a quick brunch recipe, this is what I pull out of my back pocket because it's so simple and delicious. This is a no-roll, no fuss crust with a slightly sandy, crumbly texture thanks to the cornmeal, and a delightful crunch from the millet. In the past, I've used the crust and custard recipe as the base for any number of fillings: on The Kitchn last year, I did a version with greens and gruyere, and I teach cooking classes that often include a version heavy on local mushrooms and shallot. So if you are not keen on salmon or have some vegetables you're looking to use up this week, feel free to fold in whatever is inspiring you right now. Sometimes at this point in winter that can be hard, so hopefully this recipe may help a little. 

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