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chocolate cherry galette with no-churn arak ice cream

Ingredients

for the no-churn arak ice cream:

  • 460g heavy whipping cream (2 cups)
  • One 395g can sweetened condensed milk (14 oz)
  • 45g arak* (3 tablespoons)

for the chocolate pie dough:

  • 180g all purpose flour (1 1/3 cups)
  • 40g cocoa powder (shy 1/2 cup)
  • 50g powdered sugar (shy 1/2 cup)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 130g cold, unsalted butter, cut into chunks (9 tablespoons)
  • 60g plain cold yogurt (1/4 cup) – not Greek/strained
  • 15g cold water (1 tablespoon)

for the galette filling and topping:

  • 330g pitted halved cherries (2 1/4 cups, from about 380g whole)
  • 25g sugar (2 tablespoons)
  • 15g cornstarch (1 1/2 tablespoons)
  • 1.5g cocoa powder (1 teaspoon)
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 15g lemon juice (1 tablespoon)
  • cocoa powder for dusting
  • chocolate shavings for topping (optional)

Instructions

  1. For the ice cream: The day before you plan to serve, whip the cream to stiff peaks (don’t over-beat it, or it will turn to butter).
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the sweetened condensed milk and arak.
  3. Fold 1/2 of the sweetened condensed milk mixture into the whipped cream, then carefully fold in the last 1/2.
  4. Pour the mixture in a loaf pan, cover with foil or plastic wrap, and freeze overnight.
  5. For the pie dough: Place the flour, cocoa powder, powdered sugar, salt, and butter in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse several times until there are no lumps of butter left. Add the yogurt, and pulse a couple times to combine, then add the water, and pulse a couple more times, until it comes together into a dough (don’t overmix).
  6. Form the dough into a flat disc, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate 30 minutes to overnight.
  7. Make the filling and assemble the galette: If you refrigerated your dough overnight, let it sit at cool room temperature for about 30 minutes. If it just chilled for 30 minutes, just grab it right from the fridge.
  8. Preheat the oven to 400°F (205°C) convection, and line a sheet pan with parchment.
  9. Combine the cherries, sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice, and let the filling sit while you roll out the crust.
  10. Lightly dust a clean surface with some cocoa powder. Roll out the chilled dough disc into a circle, re-powdering as needed to keep it from sticking. It should be about 1/4-inch thick, and 12 inches across. Careful not to tear it (though the edges might split a tiny bit, which is fine). Transfer to the parchment-lined sheet pan.
  11. Scoop the cherry mixture and juices onto the center of the chocolate crust, and then fold the sides about 2 inches in toward the center, leaving a big gap in the middle (see photos).
  12. Bake for about 35 minutes, until the crust is baked through and the center of the cherry filling is hot and no longer super runny.
  13. Let it cool at room temperature for at least 10 minutes, and then serve with the arak ice cream (and garnish with chocolate shavings if you’d like).

Notes

* Arak is a Middle Eastern spirit, flavored with anise. If you can’t find it, you can substitute Greek ouzo. And if you absolutely hate anise, you can substitute kirsch or vodka. If you can’t have alcohol at all, feel free to leave it out altogether. The resulting ice cream will be a little less smooth, and will have some little ice crystals. Oh, and if you can’t find arak but really want to replicate its flavor, you can use vodka and a little pinch of star anise powder or a few drops of anise extract in this recipe. Just make sure you don’t overdo it—it should taste almost like vanilla.

To make ahead: The ice cream and pie dough can be made weeks ahead of time and kept in the freezer. Thaw the pie dough in the refrigerator for a couple days before using. While the ice cream really needs a full 12+ hours to freeze, you can totally make the pie dough the day you plan to bake. The galette itself will keep at room temperature for a day or two, but (like all baked goods) is best kept in the freezer after that to prevent staling.