This pear galette has all the characteristics of pie that we adore–flaky crust, and tender pear filling–yet none of the fuss that pie-making often requires. And with a whole-grain crust and minimal sugar, it’s a more adult indulgence.
Coarsely ground graham flour lends a honeyed flavor to this crust, which brings out the vanilla in the pear filling. Red-skinned Bartlett pears look especially beautiful here, but if you can’t find them, green Bartlett or Bosc pears work equally well.–The Editors of Martha Stewart Living
For the crust
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons graham flour or whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour plus more for dusting
- 3/4 teaspoon coarse salt
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (4 oz) cold unsalted butter cut into small pieces
- 2 to 4 tablespoons ice water
For the pear filling
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 vanilla bean split and seeds scraped, or 1 tablespoon vanilla extract or paste
- 2 pounds green or red Bartlett or Bosc pears halved lengthwise, cored, and sliced into 1/2-inch (12-mm) wedges
- 1 tablespoon (1/2 oz) unsalted butter cut into small pieces
- 1 large egg lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon water
- Raw sugar such as turbinado, for sprinkling
Make the crust
- In a food processor, pulse the flours, salt, and sugar until combined. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles a coarse meal with a few pea-size pieces of butter remaining.
- Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the ice water over the mixture. Pulse until the dough is crumbly but holds together when squeezed, adding up to 2 tablespoons more water, if necessary, dribbling it a little at a time.
- Turn the dough out on a large piece of plastic wrap. Fold the plastic wrap over the dough and press to shape into a disk 1 inch (25 mm) thick. Refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour or up to 3 days.
Make the pear filling
- In a large bowl, stir together the sugar, flour, and vanilla seeds. Add the pears and toss to coat.
- On a lightly floured piece of parchment paper, roll out dough to a 13-inch (33-cm) round that's about 1/8-inch (3-mm) thick. Transfer the parchment and dough to a rimmed baking sheet and refrigerate until ready to use or up to overnight.
☞TESTER TIP: To keep your rolling pin from sticking to the dough, reuse the plastic wrap you wrapped the dough in and place it on top of the dough while rolling it.
- Arrange the pears in the center of the dough, leaving a 3-inch (8-cm) border. Gently pick up and fold the border over the pears, allowing it to fall into folds or pleats that overlap slightly. Gently press the folds or pleats onto the pears. Dot the butter over the filling and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
☞TESTER TIP: To keep the dough from ripping as you create those rustic pleats, pick up the parchment paper and let it help you lift and fold the edges of the dough over the filling.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Adjust the oven rack to the lower third of the oven.
- Brush the edges of the dough with egg wash and sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake the galette, rotating the sheet halfway through, until the crust is golden and the pear filling is bubbling, 30 to 50 minutes.
- Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack and let the galette cool slightly. Serve it warm or at room temperature.
Pear Galette With Puff PastrySwap in store-bought or homemade puff pastry for a quick and easy galette. Simply roll out the puff pastry, pile the filling in the center, and fold the pastry edges around the filling. Bake at 400°F (200°C) until the pastry is puffed and golden, and the filling is bubbling, about 1 hour.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
I tend to think of galettes as non-recipes. You throw some fruit in a crust, fold it over, and done, but this one was just different enough to make me so happy with the results. The graham crust with the pears are a perfect complement and the crunchy sugar is an excellent contrast to the soft pear filling. This one’s a keeper!
I used green Bartlett pears as suggested in the recipe intro because they were the most ripe and ready to go at the moment. Five pears were almost exactly 2 pounds for this type of pear.
I used vanilla extract instead of a bean, but I could see how the bean would be amazing here and add that lovely speckled effect to the fruit.
I baked the galette for 45 minutes before some of the pears were getting a bit too brown on the edges.
The galette, a rustic, underfilled, free-form pie, is never described as blue-ribbon winning, all-time favorite, or the specialty of the house in any American restaurant I’ve visited. A bit of an underdog, it isn’t chocolate, isn’t cheesecake, not gooey, brûléed, or melting. It isn’t deep-dish, far from mile-high, not a home-cooked favorite like crisp or cobbler. If you’re me, this sets the stage for an extra-special homemade dessert, one with no expectations (“it’s like a pie?”), that nobody knows how to pronounce, and that no one can resist: an underdog victory!
And what a victory it is: Wholesome whole-grain pastry envelopes softly set, ruddy-skinned pears, speckled and scented with vanilla, casually perched on the very parchment you rolled it on, ready to slice into wedges so clean you could almost lift them to your mouth in hand, but for a crust so flaky, you’ll be pressing your fingers to the plate for the final crumbs.
The recipe here won’t lead you astray, and don’t worry if you don’t have a perfect 2 pounds of fruit (I was a little under). If you can’t find graham flour (coarsely ground whole wheat), plain whole wheat can be used. For texture, I removed 1 tablespoon whole whote flour and replaced it with 1 tablespoon wheat germ.
We let it sit till barely warm and it cut PERFECTLY without runniness. The crust underneath was intact, no sog. SCORE.
Oh, one other tip: for a real slam-dunk, roll your pastry on top of the parchment, underneath the plastic wrap you used to refrigerate it in. Your rolling pin won’t even need a rinse afterwards and you can forget messing around with more flour! Go ahead, do a victory lap!
We served it alongside a dab of vanilla ice cream. Can’t wait to eat a slice tomorrow with coffee. (It’s barely sweet so totally doable for breakfast—I’ll do another victory lap afterwards!)
My pear galette was made with yellow Bartlett pears, which are the variety most likely found locally (my own orchard had a bumper crop last year but less so this year). I used organic whole wheat and all-purpose flours (both from Central Milling), handling the dough as gently as possible, briefly pulsing, then gathering into a disk.
The pears were nicely ripe and therefore delicate, so I didn’t arrange them in a pretty spiral, more of a jumble piled into the middle, so handle as gently as possible. They also gave up some juices, which did seep out and caramelize a bit—that is exactly why we love galettes, for their rustic honesty.
Noticing how well the galette was cooking at 30 minutes when I rotated the pan. I checked after 15 more minutes and removed it from the oven, bubbling and golden brown. Cooling for 30-40 minutes before serving (still slightly warm), the scent of vanilla and pear was completely wonderful. The fruit was the star, held together with a light crust that had flakes and layers.
The next morning, we had the “is it still lovely for breakfast?” test, since for two of us it will take a little longer to consume. Although crisper last night, it was still delicious this morning and the pastry is still worth eating! It was STILL lovely on the 3rd day. The final two slices will be accompanied with some chilled poire eau de vie to be extra special!
Tip: Try to not get the dough too thin at the edges of the circle, which makes it harder to fold up and not crack or leak. Lifting the parchment paper can help you to ease the dough over and fold or pleat. Do not stress about this. The egg wash will help seal somewhat, and a little seepage of caramelized juices will be OK, especially as you leave the galette on parchment to bake.
Easy to make ahead, earlier in the day. Although other pears will work well, Bartletts are special (although fragile if very ripe). Less ripe fruit would be less juicy (though easier to arrange) but might not have the delicate flavours or perfume scent of the Bartlett. Mine were fully ripe, yet the level of sweetness was perfectly balanced and I am pretty picky about overly sweet things.
This pear galette is amazing! It has simple ingredients, simple preparation, a very straightforward process, and it doesn’t take long to make and it tastes surprisingly good.
I couldn’t find the whole wheat flour to make the crust, so I ended up using puff pastry.
I loved this! Easy to put together, a wonderful final result, and a fun way to deviate from the old fall classic of apple pie. I will absolutely be making this again this fall. I personally love a galette. All the flavor of a pie, without having the same level of crust drama and anxiety!
I ended up needing to roll the dough out between two pieces of parchment to keep it from sticking to my rolling pin. I should have made sure to loosen the dough from the bottom piece of parchment before adding the filling as there was some pulling and tearing as I turned up the galette. Luckily, they are already pretty “rustic” in appearance, so I was the only one that noticed or was bothered.
The end result was so good. No soggy crust despite the fruit being somewhat juicy, the graham flour gave a real nice nutty flavor, and a very short crust that was great with the pears. The addition of the egg wash and sugar in the raw was such a nice touch and my family loved it!
This recipe yields a perfect French galette that’s very easy to make yet so company-worthy! I used King Arthur Flour white whole wheat flour in place of graham flour which resulted in a very good crust that was flaky and buttery with just a touch of sweetness. If making and assembling a pie crust is a challenge for you, a galette will be much easier since you’re simply arranging the crust around the filling and there’s no special placement into a pie dish, crimping, or ensuring you have adequate filling.
For ease of handling, be sure that your dough is well-chilled when you roll it out. To prep the pears, a melon baller makes it easy to remove the core.
I made the dough with King Arthur white whole wheat flour. I refrigerated the dough overnight. I used Bosc pears and vanilla bean paste in the filling. I checked the galette after 30 minutes, rotated it, and baked it for only an additional 7 minutes, which resulted in a thoroughly baked crust with a nice golden color.
This recipe was an utter delight! Just from reading the recipe, I expected great things—ripe, baked fruit encased in a homemade flaky crust. Sign me up. But the results were even better than I expected!
I was drawn to it because 1. I adore fruit desserts and 2. anytime I can swap in whole wheat flour for AP flour, I try and do so. I used large red-skinned Bartlett pears (3 total pears) and instead of graham flour, King Arthur organic whole wheat flour.
The great thing about using pears as the fruit here is that pears ripen very quickly after you buy them; so since you’re baking them, it doesn’t matter if they start off a bit ripe and soft in areas, they are going to become very tender in the hot oven anyway.
The crust, when baked, was super flaky, buttery, and the whole wheat flour really gave the entire dessert a nutty flavor which was outstanding. (Speaking of the crust, I positioned the rack in the lower third of the oven; since you’re baking at a high temp of 400 degrees; if you were to bake the tart on the bottom rack I would think it would brown too quickly especially on the bottom of the galette.)
I served the galette warm, sliced into wedges, and it fed 5 people. Like I said, check the galette after about 45 minutes; mine was just brown enough and the fruit bubbling after 50 minutes. I let it rest for 10 minutes before serving. The oohs and ahhs from our dinner guests while eating this lovely fruit galette (including from me!) were high praise for the recipe!
I considered at first serving it with a cinnamon-scented whipped cream, but glad I decided to serve it au naturale…it didn’t need any accompaniment at all.
Delicious rustic pie! With caramelized sauce on the borders and sweet and soft pears, it’s amazing warm and cold! Surely a recipe to make again and again! I can’t stop imagining this pie with soft fruits like peaches, apricots…even seedless cherries! A keeper and a hit.
We loved this rustic tart. It’s full of fruit and vanilla flavors, not too sweet, and the crust has a perfect texture that’s crispy, flaky, and crumbly. I think the balance of using half all purpose and half graham or whole wheat flour resulted in an awesome crust that I will be using to make more pies in the future.
I used 3 Tbsp of water to get the right dough texture. The baking time is accurate, about an hour and it was perfectly done. I refrigerated the dough one hour and I had to gently pound it with the rolling pin to get it to roll properly. So 30 minutes might be enough. This easily serves 6 people (or 4 really hungry dessert eaters!).
Originally published October 17, 2020