Yes, it is cookie season, but consider the humble galette. The cool girl of winter baking projects, a galette is elegant, low-effort and absolutely delicious. We’ve been following Elizabeth Ho, the mindful baker behind Birhouse Bakeshop and this gorgeous Instagram account, for a while now. She runs one of the most gorgeous baking accounts on Instagram lately and, as you’ll soon glean from her notes below, keeps us feeling wistful about baking while helping us whip up beautiful recipes like this persimmon and pistachio galette recipe below.
Elizabeth shared these sweet notes with us and we’re loving the excuse to swipe up more persimmons…
If the last few years of running a micro bakery have taught me anything, it’s the importance of investing more of myself in small things that cultivate love and intentionality. To focus on what nurtures and supports—not only my creative self, and the people around me, but my surroundings. The act of baking is universally grounding. It is an energy that allows us to communicate affection, to share authentically, to guide with integrity, and also to remain open to the natural world.
One of my earliest memories of baking is of building a pie, with just-picked summer strawberries; and spending time in my family’s garden, filled with lush greens and vivid pink roses—the petals I used to adorn the finished pie. The taste of the strawberries at their peak, in harmony with the monochromatic, crimson palette always stuck with me.
It is not a mere coincidence that the ingredients that bloom at the same time are also the most delicious when paired together, in taste and in palette. Strawberry and rose. Blueberry and basil. Apricot and jasmine. Plum and lavender. Persimmon and orange. Baking with the seasons in mind can be the most down-to-earth way of reconnecting and immersing yourself in your local community’s growth and needs.
I think it’s a misconception that we need to have outsized experiences—of being in the wild, on top of a mountain, out at sea—to feel a deep reverence for the earth. There’s something beautiful about being rooted in familiar surroundings, and learning to create something meaningful out of it. To embody a relationship with the simplicity around us, our personal geography, and its influence on who we are, every day. Baking is an opportunity to truly observe and to keep the sense of wonder open. To pay attention to, romanticize, and experience what is right in front of us. Something we often lose sight of in the day-to-day grind, in a fast-paced society.
So when the weight of life overwhelms you, get in the kitchen, turn on your favourite music, and bake. Something filled with seasonal fruit, and flourished with local blooms, to share with the people you love. It’s a humble appreciation for the world around you. Intention in every sense.
Birdhouse’s Pistachio + Persimmon Galette
I love this galette. As winter’s persimmons are coming in, it is a comforting, and wistful time of year. We still have the sweetness of late-autumn hanging on: figs, quince, concord grapes… feel free to celebrate this rare intersection of seasons, adding in the fruit available to you.
Notes on substitutions:
+ For butter, I’d encourage using a high quality, grass-fed butter brand, if possible!
+ The orange marmalade can be omitted, or replaced with your favourite winter jam or paste– quince, pear, or any citrus marmalade would work well, alongside the persimmon).
+ The cinnamon and nutmeg are also optional, but very recommended. I imagine a pinch of cardamom, or a crack of black pepper would be beautiful.
+ You’re free to use any nut, any fruit available and seasonal to you– I love sliced pears or apples, with hazelnut.
Galette Crust Ingredients:
1 cup brown rice flour
2 tbsp tapioca starch or rice flour
2 tbsp almond flour
1 tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp unsalted butter, cold
2 tbsp ice cold water
2 tsp apple cider vinegar (creme fraiche or buttermilk will work as well)
*if grains are not a concern for you, the flours can be replaced with 1 1/4 cup of all-purpose flour
Galette Crust Directions:
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, and salt.
2. Cut the cold butter into ½ inch cubes, and add it to the bowl. Using your fingers and palms, incorporate the butter into the dry mixture, by squishing it throughout and creating long, flaky, floury, pea-sized pieces (if you have a pastry cutter, that works too).
3. Dribble in the cold water, then add the apple cider vinegar to the mix, and evenly distribute with your hands. Knead it a few times to bring it into a rough, shaggy mass of dough.
4. Press the dough into a ½-1 inch thick disc, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate or freeze for at least an hour or two, while you prep the rest of the filling. At this point, you could store it in the freezer for up to 2 months. Let it thaw before rolling.
Persimmon Filling Ingredients:
3 cups (roughly 4-5 large) thinly sliced Fuyu persimmon (slightly ripe, but still firm)
2 tsp cornstarch
3-4 tbsp honey or maple syrup
2 tsp vanilla paste, or seeds scraped from one vanilla bean
Pinch of sea salt
*optional: ¼ tsp ground cinnamon, and a pinch of nutmeg (grated or ground)
Persimmon Filling Directions:
1. Combine all the ingredients in a medium sized bowl, toss to evenly coat. Set aside while you prep your crust.
½ cup pistachios, toasted and roughly ground (¼ cup pistachio butter or paste would also be lovely)
3-4 tbsp orange marmalade
1 small egg, beaten
Coarse sugar (i.e. cane or turbinado), for sprinkling. This is optional but makes for a lustrous, extra crunchy crust.
1. Preheat the oven to 375F.
2. On a lightly floured surface, or between two large pieces of parchment paper, roll your pie dough out into a circle, approximately 14-15 inches in diameter. Place the dough on a baking sheet, cast iron skillet, or pie dish (parchment lined).
3. Spread the ground pistachio over the rolled-out crust, leaving a 1 1/2 to 2 inch border. Evenly arrange the sliced persimmon filling atop the pistachio.
4. Fold the border of the dough, up and over the filling. Brush the edges with egg wash, and sprinkle generously with the sugar.
5. Place the galette in the oven, and bake for 40-55 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.
6. Let it cool slightly before enjoying, with a spoonful of coconut whipped cream, creme fraiche, or ice cream.