Cakes, Pies & Tarts, Dessert

Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

Nicoletta September 7, 2017

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Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme, a scrumptious dessert that lets us cling to the summer a little bit longer. A buttery, delicate, whole wheat crust envelops tiny, juicy, and sweet Saskatoon berries flavored with lemon and thyme to add some freshness to the mix.

Song of the day: Electric Feel by MGMT.

Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

Please don’t tell me we’re the only ones with bags and bags of Saskatoon berries in the freezer. The weather was so warm and dry at the beginning of the summer season, that the Saskatoon trees at our dear friend Margaret’s acreage were loaded with berries before the end of July. Perfect timing for us, to help to harvest them before our trip to Italy. And load our freezer with these lovely jewels to enjoy for the months to come.



Eat with the seasons

We try to eat seasonally as much as we can and therefore our Saturday trip to the Farmers Market is a constant in our week. We also have few planters in our backyard that produce seasonal vegetables, and my in-laws garden that provides us with plenty of summer produce. We had a very bad season for tomatoes here in this part of the world, but that did not apply to zucchini and green beans, carrots, swiss chard, beet greens, and dandelions, all in great supply. Although we prefer to eat them fresh, sometimes there’s only one thing we can do: freeze them. Well, other than giving some away…

Or freeze for later use

Lately, it’s been an explosion of green beans and we couldn’t keep up with them, so we blanched them first and then put them in freezer bags. But when opening our freezer door (we have a top freezer), it was mostly filled with bags of Saskatoon berries. The impulse to get a couple of bags out so to gain some room in the freezer led to the decision of making something with them. Something good, and lavish, and that spoke of the summer, that is still with us, but it is fading quickly, giving way to autumn.

Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

And what better way, for me, than baking one of my favorite desserts ever, a rustic yet very pretty galette? Decision made, I had a few different recipes for galettes (or crostata) in our archives. But this time I wanted to use up some whole wheat flour and I just remembered among the many beautiful cookbooks we have, there was this one, “Feast: Recipes and Stories from a Canadian Road Trip”, with a Prairie cherry galette that seemed perfect to showcase another great Canadian ingredient, the Saskatoon berry.

Galette or Pie?

Baking a galette might be a little easier than baking a pie, but it still requires some of your time and patience. While the dough comes quickly together in a food processor and needs a very gentle and brief kneading, it needs to rest in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight. I started the making of this Saskatoon Berry Galette in the morning and had it ready for the early afternoon because the 2 hours wait is not the only waiting time required. In the meantime, you can prepare the filling, lay parchment paper on a baking sheet, prepare the egg yolk/cream mixture to brush on the edges, and go on with your daily tasks. I assure you that the end result will compensate for all the time spent making this galette!

Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

Saskatoon Berries

Before coming to Canada I had never heard of Saskatoon berries. And how could have I, coming from Italy? Saskatoon berry is a “deciduous native shrub that grows from western Ontario to British Columbia and the Yukon” (The Canadian Encyclopedia), so maybe, even to some of you, they might be an unknown fruit. Their color, when ripe, is a deep purple; their taste is quite unique: sweet, nutty, and a bit floral and they are a good source of antioxidants just like other dark color fruits. If you don’t have Saskatoons, you can replace them with other berries, just adjust the quantity of sugar (you might need more) and lemon (you might need less).

In this galette, the addition of lemon and thyme is just right to counterbalance the sweetness and nuttiness of the Saskatoon berry and a great accompaniment to its “floral” flavor.

Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and ThymeSaskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

When it comes out of the oven, you look at your creation and a sigh might escape your mouth. It is so pretty! Even though some of the juices might have spilled from the sides, the edges are uneven and the round shape is imperfect, this Saskatoon Berry Galette holds a bucolic beauty and can hold a candle to even the most decorated desserts.

Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

Let’s Taste It!

The crust is delicate and tender (as you can see from the picture) and just melts in your mouth. The filling is moist, rich, robust in Saskatoon flavor with just a hint of herbaceousness from the thyme and a spark of brightness from the lemon.

We served it with quite an interesting ice cream flavor from a local ice cream company Revolution: a blood orange sour, that married well with the flavors of this galette.

Keep the summer alive with this Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme, while listening to the song of the day: Electric Feel by MGMT.

Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

  • Prep Time: 3 hours 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours 25 minutes


For the crust:

  • 1 cup (150 g) whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/4 cup (188 g) flour 00 (or all purpose)
  • 1/3 cup (35 g) almond flour
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) organic cane sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup (227 g) cold organic unsalted butter, cubed
  • 2 egg yolks, organic free range
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) ice water

For the filling:

  • 1/2 cup (122 g) organic cane sugar
  • 2 Tbsp (14 g) corn starch
  • 1 lemon, juice and zest
  • 2 Tbsp fresh thyme
  • 1.6 pound (650 g) Saskatoon berries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) cream
  • organic cane sugar, for sprinkling

For serving:

  • ice cream or whipped cream


For the crust:

  1. In a food processor, pulse the flours, sugar, and salt a few times to blend.
  2. Add the cold, cubed butter and pulse until you get a pebble-like texture.
  3. Whisk together the egg yolks and ice water and add to the flour mixture.
  4. Pulse a few times, just until the dough comes together, adding more water if it seems dry.
  5. On a lightly floured surface, gently and briefly knead the dough, then pat into a disc, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  6. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes (it will be easier to roll).
  7. Dust the work surface with flour and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  8. Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough in a circular shape to about 1/4-inch (6 mm) thickness. Don’t worry about the uneven edges, it is a rustic galette!
  9. Gently roll the dough on the rolling pin and transfer it to the prepared baking sheet. It it breaks (and it might, it is so delicate), just patch the dough together, it will be fine.

For the filling:

  1. In a large bowl add the sugar, cornstarch, lemon and thyme and mix together. Add the Saskatoon berries and stir to combine.
  2. Pour the Saskatoon mixture onto the center of the crust, leaving some border around the edges.
  3. Fold the edges of the crust over the berries toward the center.
  4. Chill in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
  5. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 400° F (200°C).
  6. In a little bowl whisk the egg yolk and cream.
  7. Take the galette out of the refrigerator, brush the egg mixture over the crust edges and sprinkle the organic cane sugar.
  8. Bake the galette for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the crust is golden.
  9. Remove the galette from the oven and let cool on a rack for about 15 minutes before slicing.
  10. Slice and serve warm, with ice cream or whipped cream on top.


If using frozen Saskatoon berries, like us, let thaw and drain any excess water.


  • Serving Size: 6-8 servings
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Saskatoon Berry Galette with Lemon and Thyme

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  • Avatar
    Reply Dana Sandonato September 8, 2017 at 8:49 am

    What a stunning galette! I’ve never had a Saskatoon berry before, but they look damn good. I also love lemon and thyme together, and anything herbaceous paired with a fruity pastry is a win in my books. Love it!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 8, 2017 at 9:58 am

      Thank you, Dana! We’re lucky to have Saskatoons in this part of Canada! They are really unique and unlike any other berry I had had before! In this galette, combined with those 2 flavors, they really shine through.

  • Avatar
    Reply Denise from UrbnSpice September 8, 2017 at 9:02 am

    It is very pretty! I love galettes for the same reason you do – they are imperfectly perfect, aren’t they? Their rustic appearance is so appealing to me. I think it is brilliant that you chose to pair the filling with thyme and lemon. I am looking forward to trying your lovely recipe.

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 8, 2017 at 10:00 am

      Thanks so much, Denise! Yes, I just love galettes, and find them so appealing. Hope you try it and let me know!

  • Avatar
    Reply Nicole September 8, 2017 at 9:18 am

    What a beautiful work of art! The flavors sound incredible, and that blood orange sour ice cream to top it with – perfection!! I’m excited to get my hands on some Saskatoon berries now.

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 8, 2017 at 10:02 am

      You are so nice, Nicole! The flavors were incredible, and yes, that ice cream was just the right accompaniment!

  • Avatar
    Reply Gabrielle @ eyecandypopper September 8, 2017 at 9:47 am

    Love this! I haven’t had the chance to try Saskatoon berries before because I’m in the east of Canada, but I’m intrigued! I would love to have a slice of this for dessert!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 8, 2017 at 10:05 am

      Hi Gabrielle! If you get the chance, you have to taste Saskatoons! Such a unique flavor, and they’re so pretty too 🙂 . Would love to share a piece with you. Thanks for your comment!

  • Avatar
    Reply Christy Brissette September 8, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    I love Saskatoon berries! This galette is gorgeous.

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 8, 2017 at 12:32 pm

      Thank you so much! So glad to find another lover of these berries, yay!

  • Avatar
    Reply Nidhi Patel September 8, 2017 at 2:41 pm

    What a rustic beauty, I have never tried the Saskatoon berries; Adding thyme is an interesting touch. I would love to have a piece of it right about now with a hot cup of coffee or tea as the temps are teasing almost.

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 8, 2017 at 2:46 pm

      Oh you would love Saskatoons! So sweet and unlike any other berry! Thank you so much!

  • Avatar
    Reply Kim September 9, 2017 at 7:52 am

    Such beautiful pictures! I managed to get two large Ziploc bags full of Saskatoon berries when we went picking in the summer frozen. This looks like a great thing to make with them!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 9, 2017 at 8:13 am

      Thanks! Yes, it is a great thing to make with the frozen Saskatoon, as it takes care of -at least- a full bag of them!

  • Avatar
    Reply Natalie Browne September 9, 2017 at 10:15 am

    I just love the combination of lemon and thyme with berries. We freeze bags and bags of local berries blueberries and raspberries every summer, just so we can get a taste of them all year long. This galette looks like a perfect celebration of all those Saskatoon berries

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 9, 2017 at 4:09 pm

      Thanks, Natalie! Yes, lemon and thyme marry so well with berries, especially Saskatoons, because they’re not tart, they’re actually even too sweet. Glad to hear we’re not the only ones with a freezer full of berries 🙂 .

  • Avatar
    Reply eliotthecat September 10, 2017 at 12:40 am

    I tried these berries for the first time a couple of summers ago when we visited friends in Alberta and were able to pick them roadside. Beautiful dessert,

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 11, 2017 at 10:38 am

      Yes, here in Alberta they grow wild, in Edmonton also along the river valley. So cool that you got to taste them. Thank you so much for your comment!

  • Avatar
    Reply Food Meanderings September 11, 2017 at 7:17 am

    That is my kind of dessert – love Saskatoons and galettes. And that orange ice cream combo sounds divine! Wish I wish I lived a wee bit closer, so I could take some of those Saskatoons off your hands. Sadly, we miss Saskatoon berry season EVERY year, as we go on our holidays right at that time. Even if we go to Winnipeg, we have just missed it there, because it’s earlier. I often find myself buying frozen ones from Co op. I need to try to recipe the next time I get my hands on some 🙂

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 11, 2017 at 10:40 am

      Oh, thank you so much! Saskatoons are amazing, we are lucky we got to pick them at our friends’ acreage and fill our freezer with bags and bags of them! Wish we could share some!

  • Avatar
    Reply Kim at Three Olives Branch September 17, 2017 at 11:34 am

    I have never heard of these berries before, but I LOVE berries and this galette looks absolutely amazing! I am going to have to track these berries down!

    • Nicoletta
      Reply Nicoletta September 17, 2017 at 7:55 pm

      Thank you so much! They are a variety of berries native to Alberta, Canada. Sweet and nutty, cute and delicious!

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