Skip the expected cookie exchange and invite your friends over for an afternoon of baking. During the baking party, whip up savory galettes that are perfect for the holiday hustle. After the party, guests can take them home and pop them in the freezer for a sanity-saving dinner in no time.
A day or two before the party, mix a batch of pastry dough for each attendee. Form dough into disks, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until it's time to roll. Designate individual work spaces with chilled pastry boards, parchment paper, and measuring cups and spoons. Provide easy access to prepped filling ingredients.
Marble boards hold a chill that keeps the butter in the dough solid for a flakier pastry. For a less expensive alternative and similar effects, give porcelain tiles a try. We found 12×12-inch tiles for less than $10 at big-box stores.
Bake or Take
Bake a filled galette or two for sampling during the party. Box the others up for your friends, and send them home with baking directions. Guests can freeze finished galettes until firm, then transfer them (still on the parchment paper) to plastic freezer bags. They keep in the freezer up to a month. No need to defrost: Our recipes go from freezer to oven to table in about an hour.
Try these three seasonal galettes.
- Cranberry-Rosemary: Fresh and dried cranberries star in this citrusy filling. A sprinkle of fresh rosemary keeps it from being too sweet.
- Kale-White Cheddar: This cheesy tart is loaded with our favorite winter green and finished with a squeeze of fresh lemon. Serve it with extra fresh lemon slices.
- Butternut-Feta: A drizzle of honey after baking adds a sweet note to this savory tart.
The Snacks and Cocktails
An extra batch of the dough becomes the base for snack crackers. Roll out dough and dust with sweet or savory toppers (cinnamon sugar, za'atar, ground black pepper and flaky salt, Parmesan cheese, etc.). Cut into cracker-size pieces, then bake at 375°F until golden brown. Serve with purchased dippers, jams, and dips.
Keep cocktails seasonal and easy. Dress up a bottle of dry red wine with warming spices (cardamom, cloves, cinnamon), citrus zest and juice, and a drizzle of honey. Heat to a simmer over low.
Box Them Up
White cardboard bakery boxes are the perfect way to transport the finished galettes. Look for them at your local crafts store. Add a handwritten tag with the recipe name and a quick wrap of twine.