The Unsung Hero Of Saturday Morning Breakfasts Of Yore


There are a lot of things I don’t remember about my childhood.

The names of favourite candies, toys, friends and places, etc elude me, owing (I assume) to me having blocked out a fair number of memories after my parents got divorced.  Or maybe they just weren’t worth remembering… who can say?

At any rate, one thing I do remember is learning to make galette.  The provenance of said recipe is debatable depending on whether you ask me or my dad.  I seem to recall being gifted with it after going on one of those super boring but educational field trips that are all too common during your formative years; the ones where you learn how pioneers darned socks and churned butter, etc.  My dad, on the other hand, seems to think this recipe came about during the years I was in Brownies (the Canadian equivalent of the Girl Scouts and younger feeder group for the Girl Guides of Canada).  Both stories are plausible, but where the recipe comes from doesn’t really matter.

In either case, once my dad got hold of the recipe, it became a tradition in our small household, one that he also recalls from when he was a boy and my grandmother would make galette for her 12 hungry children.

Every Saturday morning hence, my dad would get up, put on his stovetop espresso pot and start to work on making galette.  The quick bread ingredients were all tossed together in a zippered plastic bag and then water was added to moisten them, then the bag was sealed and passed off to me for a good bit of kneading.  Once he thought the ingredients were suitably combined, the bag was turned inside out and the contents mooshed onto a foil lined cookie sheet.  After 20 minutes or so of me impatiently peering into the oven, he’d deem them to be ready, and I’d eagerly split mine apart, not minding that I was burning the tips of my fingers.  I’d generously cover both sides with margarine (the only thing my dad would keep in the house) or occasionally jam and then dig in until my belly was contented and full.

It’s been a long time since I tasted one of dad’s homemade galettes, but recently I felt the need for this culinary stroll down memory lane so I emailed him and asked for the recipe.  The only thing I’ve changed is the type of fat used, because while the original recipe called for shortening or lard, dad always used margarine and I prefer to use butter.  Use whatever fat you like, just make sure to eat these when they’re steaming hot!

Foodie’s Favourite Breakfast Galette

1 c. flour

2 tsp baking powder

0.5 tsp salt

1 tbsp butter, melted

0.5 c. water

Preheat the oven to 375*.  Combine dry ingredients in a bowl, stirring to blend.  Add the melted butter and water and mix until a dough forms.  Knead lightly until the dough comes together, then divide in 2 and press onto a foil lined cookie sheet.  If you’re like my dad and enjoy the contrast of textures, mess around with the dough a bit so that little tufts form which will become burnished and crunchy in the oven.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown.  Split in half and slather with butter, jam, cream cheese or whatever your heart desires, then devour quickly before they have a chance to get cold.

Makes 2 galette.

Until next time…

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