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How to Make a Galette des Rois the French King’s Cake

January 6th, or Epiphany, is the day we eat the delicious Galette des Rois or King’s Cake in France. As a sweetener, parents (or the pastry shop) hide a small figurine sandwiched among the warm rum-scented layers of frangipane (almond cream) and puff pastry. The figurine, also known as a fève, was historically a small bean but changed to a ceramic figurine sometime in the late 1800s. Whoever finds the fève (if they haven’t broken a tooth) gets to wear a crown and be king or queen for the day! The best news is that you don’t have to wait until January 6th for this delicious dessert. It is called almond pithivier the rest of the year.

Here is my step-by-step video on how to make a Galette des Rois.

Make Galette des Rois

Galette des Rois (King's Cake)

Chef François de Mélogue
A delicious cake filled with almond cream. Try this recipe for your next dinner party!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine French, Provencal
Servings 8 Servings

Ingredients
  

For the Pastry:

  • 2-10 inch Circles about 1/8 inch thick of all-butter puff pastry — Preferably use an all-butter version, but Pepperidge Farms will do in a pinch
  • 1 larg Egg beaten
  • 1 Fève bean, figurine, stone

For the Frangipane (Almond Cream):

  • 1 cup almond flour (almond meal)
  • 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
  • pinch Sea Salt
  • 1 stick of Unsalted Butter 4 ounces
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 Orange zested
  • 1 ounce Dark Rum
  • 1 tsp Almond Extract

Instructions
 

  • To make the frangipane, in a food processor, process the almond flour, sugar, salt, butter, eggs, orange zest, rum, and almond extract together until very smooth, about 30 seconds. If you don’t have a food processor, you can mix it by hand, but it will take much longer and the final consistency will be a little coarser.
  • Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or sheet of parchment paper. Place the puff pastry circles on the prepared baking sheet. Brush the outer edge of 1 puff pastry circle with your beaten egg. Spoon the frangipane into the center of 1 circle. Evenly spread out, leaving a 1-inch border free and clear of any frangipane. If you are putting in a fève do so now. Make a little secret mark on the galette to be sure your little one gets the feve (and so no one breaks a tooth). Place the second circle of puff pastry over the top and press down to seal the edges.
  • Put two fingers on the 1-inch border facing out from the center of the galette and draw the backside of a butter knife towards you. This simple technique will create a visually stunning border that will elevate your pastry-making to an art form. Next, place the galette into your refrigerator for 1 hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  • Cut a pattern into the top of the galette using the backside of a paring knife. Classically, it is semi-circles spiralling out of the center. This is solely for show and does not affect the final flavour so you can skip it. Be sure to score the top and not cut through the dough. Brush the top with the beaten egg, then bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature.
Keyword Almond, Cakes, Christmas Recipe, French Desserts, Holidays
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Chef François de Mélogue

Chef François de Mélogue

François de Mélogue grew up in a very French household in Chicago. His earliest attempts at cookery began with the filleting of his sister’s goldfish at age two and a braised rabbit dish made with his pet rabbits by age seven. He eventually stopped cooking his pets and went to the highly esteemed New England Culinary Institute, where he graduated top of his class in 1985.

Chef François has over 30 years of cross-cultural culinary experience and brings an impressive culinary history and a unique Mediterranean cooking style. After graduating top of his class from the notable New England Culinary Institute, Chef François began his career in a number of highly acclaimed kitchens across the country, including Chef Louis Szathmary’s restaurant The Bakery in Chicago, Old Drovers Inn, a Relais and Chateaux property in New York and Joel Robuchon Gastronomie restaurant in Paris, before opening award-winning restaurant Pili Pili in his hometown of Chicago, rated in the Top Ten new restaurants in the World by Food and Wine magazine in 2003.

Chef François resides in St Albans, Vermont with his wife Lisa and ten-year-old son Beaumont, who has proclaimed himself the family saucier. Chef François' latest publication French Cooking for Beginners: 75+ Classic Recipes to Cook Like a Parisian takes you on a culinary journey well beyond the streets of Paris. Francois is a professional photographer specializing in food/product photography, real estate photography and shooting rural landscapes of Vermont and France. Explore his work on https://www.francoisdemelogue.com/.

Take a look at his website Simple French Cooking filled with delicious recipes and beautiful photos. Also follow Francois on Medium for more tempting dishes Pistou and Pastis.

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