Now is the time to put your Friendsgiving on the calendar. I suppose Thanksgiving is coming up, too, but Friendsgiving is so much fun. If you, like me, enjoy cooking and also control (over the menu, and every other detail), you may have found that for a holiday so devoted to food, Thanksgiving can fail to satisfy. That’s where Friendsgiving steps in. No need to travel, no mandate for sticking to traditions . . . risks are encouraged. I treat it as a food-lovers co-opting of Thanksgiving.
Today’s greens galette is a contribution to the #jarryfriendsgiving “virtual potluck,” and I hope you’ll join us! We’ve got lots of recipes and inspiration over on the Jarry website, including a favorite side dish of mine: Grilled Raddichio with Sharp Cheddar and Toasted Hazelnuts.
In July or August, when we shot a Friendsgiving feast for the first issue of Jarry, it was hot outside, and months away from the appropriate time for the holiday food. Fun, but not quite right. So last weekend I had a Friendsgiving in earnest. A potluck-style feast, with no marshmallow-topped casseroles or, come to think of it, even stuffing, or mashed potatoes, or gravy—but so many exciting vegetable dishes: cardamom-and-coconut-spiced mashed sweet potatoes by Crista; a salad of shaved kohlrabi and apples, chocolate mint, and hazelnuts by Andy; pomegranate-spiked kabocha squash salad by Cathy; Marion Cunningham’s First Prize Onion Casserole by Noah; a medley of purple carrots, acorn squash, and cauliflower by Paul; slow-cooked sweet potatoes topped with garlicky labneh and chives by Ben. Then we had braised chicken in place of roasted turkey; applesauce cake instead of pie . . . and somehow a lot more food. This greens galette was one of my contributions.
Tarts and galettes are often my go-to as festive, vegetarian centerpiece dishes. They’re easy, look pretty, and allow a little fork-and-knife action in the way that even the heartiest salad usually can’t. This one is loaded with greens, which are enriched with some caramelized onions and a bit of cream. They’re piled on top of a smear of ricotta cheese that’s been blitzed up with briny preserved lemon (easy to omit), folded into the crust, then baked until golden and flaky. It’s a rich dish, worthy of the occasion—a cousin, maybe, of spanakopita. Serve it at room temp, which means: Bake it off early in the day.
Happy Friendsgiving! I hope this inspires you to gather up your friends. And pull up virtual a chair—use that #jarryfriendsgiving tag so that I can follow along.
Greens Galette with Preserved Lemon
If you omit the preserved lemon—which is very briny—top the tart and crust with a few pinches of finishing salt before baking.
Serves 6 to 8
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup rye flour (or all-purpose flour)
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
6 tablespoons cold, cubed butter
3 to 5 tablespoons ice water
Whisk together the flours and salt. Add the butter and use your fingers or a pastry cutter to quickly incorporate it into the flour, until the butter is broken down to pea-sized pieces. Dribble the ice water over, starting with 3 tablespoons, and use a rubber spatula or fork to gently combine. Add additional water by the tablespoon until the dough begins to form large, moist crumbles. Gather up the dough and shape it into a compact, flat disc, then seal with plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour or overnight.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, cut into thin strips
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Big pinch pepper flakes
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
2 heaping cups chopped, blanched hearty greens (kale, chard, broccoli rabe, etc.), from about 2 small bunches*
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup ricotta
1/2 small preserved lemon, seeded and coarsely chopped (optional, see note above)
1 egg yolk whisked with 1 tablespoon water
Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, cumin, and pepper flakes and cook, stirring every now and then, until the onions are softened, slightly blistered, and beginning to caramelize, 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in the sherry vinegar and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes, scraping up the browned bits from the pan. Stir in the greens and, once heated through, pour in the cream. Cook, stirring, until the cream begins to bubble around the edges. Remove from the heat and cool completely.
If using the preserved lemon, combine it with the ricotta in a mini food processor or standard-sized one and process until smooth (a mini works best).
Place the dough in the center of a lightly floured surface. Working from the center and rolling outward, rotating 90 degrees after each turn, roll the dough into a circle about 15 inches in diameter and 1/8-inch thick, adding a bit more flour as necessary to prevent sticking. Drape over a rolling pin and transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Spread the ricotta evenly in the center of the crust, leaving a 3-inch border. Pile the cooled greens on top of the ricotta, then fold the edges over the filling. Brush with the eggwash and transfer to the freezer.
Transfer the galette to the oven and cook for 40 to 50 minutes, rotating the pan once halfway through, until the crust is golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature.
* To blanch greens: Stem the greens, discarding them or reserving them for another use, and coarsely chop the leaves into manageable pieces. Bring a pot of salted water to boil, then add the greens, submerging them in the water with a spider skimmer or slotted spoon. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until wilted and tender (the time will depend on the heartiness of your green). Transfer to a colander to drain and cool. Once safe to handle, gather the greens in handfuls and squeeze out as much excess liquid as you can. Chop into bite-sized pieces and fluff them up with your fingers.