SEATTLE — America's Test Kitchen rigorously tests all their recipes, so you know they're all going to be tasty!
Their co-host Julia Collin Davison tells us about their new Complete Summer Cookbook, talks about what it's been like cooking from home instead of the test kitchen, and demonstrates how to make a simple and delicious summer dessert.
Recipe: Strawberry Galette with Candied Basil and Balsamic, America's Test Kitchen
Why This Recipe Works: Whereas pie fillings run the gamut from custards and creams to fruit, chocolate, and nuts, galettes typically feature fruit alone. There's a good reason for this: The exposed fruit does more than just meld into a cohesive filling—it roasts! This deepens the flavor of the fruit and evaporates moisture quickly, so there's usually no need for an added thickener. But we discovered strawberries are an exception. We followed the method of our other galettes and what came from the oven was a watery mess severely lacking in strawberry flavor. We'd need a thickener of some kind. Tossing cornstarch with the berries did the trick, and incorporating some strawberry jam intensified the berry flavor while adding viscosity. This tart was beautifully fresh, but its flavor was further elevated by a drizzle of balsamic glaze made by reducing vinegar with some sugar: The balsamic”™ acidity heightened the flavor of the strawberries while its woodsy fruitiness deepened it. Some ground black pepper provided sharp contrast. And to gild the lily, we finished with some sugared basil leaves that took less than 2 minutes to candy in the microwave. We love these garnishes, but you could substitute 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil for all of them if you prefer.
Serves 6 to 8
- 1 recipe Free-Form Tart Dough (page 332)
- ⅓ cup strawberry jam
- ¼ cup (1¾ ounces) plus 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
- ¼ teaspoon table salt
- 1½ tablespoons cornstarch
- 1½ pounds strawberries, hulled and halved (5 cups)
- ½ cup balsamic vinegar
- 1½ teaspoons sugar, divided
- Vegetable oil spray
- ¼ cup fresh basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
- For the galette, roll dough into 12-inch circle between 2 large sheets of floured parchment paper. (If dough sticks to parchment, gently loosen dough with bench scraper and dust parchment with additional flour.) Slide dough, still between parchment, onto rimmed baking sheet and refrigerate until firm, 15 to 30 minutes.
- Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Microwave jam, ¼ cup sugar, and salt in large bowl until warm, about 30 seconds. Whisk in cornstarch. Add strawberries and gently toss to coat. Mound fruit in center of chilled dough, leaving 2-inch border around edge. Fold outermost 2 inches of dough over fruit, pleating it every 2 to 3 inches as needed. Gently pinch pleated dough to secure, but do not press dough into fruit.
- Brush top and sides of dough lightly with water and sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. Bake until crust is deep golden brown and fruit is bubbling, 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes. Let tart cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes. Using parchment, carefully slide tart onto wire rack and let cool until just warm, about 30 minutes.
- For the garnishes, while tart cools, bring vinegar and 1 teaspoon sugar to simmer in 8-inch skillet over medium heat. Cook until vinegar is reduced to 2 tablespoons, 5 to 7 minutes; set aside to cool slightly, about 5 minutes. Line large plate with parchment and lightly spray with oil spray. Arrange basil in single layer on plate, then lightly spray with oil spray and sprinkle evenly with remaining ½ teaspoon sugar. Microwave until bright green and crisp, about 90 seconds; transfer to paper towel–lined plate to cool completely, about 5 minutes. Serve tart, topping with basil and pepper and drizzling with balsamic reduction.