Galette is pretty much the simplest French tart you can make. It’s just a flat sheet of pastry with a filling tumbled in the middle and the edges folded over. It can be sweet, filled with anything from apples or blackberries to figs or plums. Or it can be savoury, like this onion and tapenade galette. The inspiration for this recipe is the Provençal pissaladiere. That has a pizza-style bread dough base topped with onions, anchovies and black olives. It’s a delight. It’s also a bit of work because there’s kneading and proving involved. The pastry for this galette on the other hand is made in about 60 seconds in your food processor!

It has the traditional onion of a pissaladiere, but instead of the olives and anchovies, I opened a bottle of tapenade which of course contains olives and anchovies. All the flavours of Provence, in a bottle!

One can’t talk about the flavours of Provence without also talking about that quintessential Provençal wine, Rosé. I was seriously chuffed when the kind folks from Anthonij Rupert Wines sent me a bottle of their Jean Roi Rosé recently. It’s made in Provençal style – dry and pale with that typical Provençal onion skin colour. It’s made from predominantly Cinsaut grapes with a bit of Grenache and Shiraz added. So very southern France.

It bursts with loads of berries on the nose and palate, and has a light, fresh finish. I love things with a bit of a story and this wine has it because it’s named after Jean Roi from Lourmarin in Provence, one of the first 150 French Huguenots who came to settle in the Franschhoek area from 1688 to 1689. A premium Rosé in a gorgeous bottle, this wine is made for drinking on special occasions with special friends. And it just so happens to be a perfect pairing partner for this onion and tapenade galette!

All you need is…

2½ cups cake flour
½ cup wholewheat flour
180g salted butter, ice cold, cut into small cubes
½ tsp salt
1 egg, whisked with 1 Tbsp milk
8 Tbsp ice water
5 large onions, finely sliced
2 Tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp dried red chilli flakes
1½ tsp sugar
¼ tsp salt
8 sprigs thyme, leaves only
125ml bottle tapenade

To make the pastry, place the white and wholewheat flour, salt and butter in a food processor. Pulse it until the cubes of butter are the size of peas. Now add the water a tablespoon at a time and pulse between each addition. Tumble mixture onto a work surface and use your hands to just bring the pastry together. Shape a 5cm thick round disk and wrap the pastry in cling film. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Make the filling while the pastry is resting. Add the two tablespoons of olive oil to a thick-based saucepan and tumble in the onions, thyme, salt, sugar and chilli. Fry over very low heat until soft and golden– you don’t want the onions to brown! Cool down onion mix.

Cut a piece of baking paper the size of a baking tray. Place the pastry in the middle of the paper and roll it out to be about 5mm thick. Spoon the tapenade onto the pastry circle leaving a 4cm border clear. Next spoon the onions onto the tapenade and spread out evenly. Fold the 4cm border over the filling. Place galette onto a baking tray and paint the pastry border with the egg wash. Add a few extra sprigs of thyme and pop galette into a pre-heated 180 degree Celsius oven for 40-45 minutes until golden. Serve it warm with a green salad on the side and it’s a meal for four. Cut it into smaller slices as a canapé to enjoy with an ice cold glass of Rosé and it will serve eight.

(Cook’s note – an alternative to the tapenade: If you cannot find tapenade or prefer for this galette to have more of a pissaladiere vibe, leave the tapenade out. Spoon the onions onto the pastry, then top with plenty of stoned black olives and anchovy fillets. A few sprigs of thyme and into the oven it goes.)




25 min


40-45 min


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