It has been a while since I wanted to make this galette des rois. This is a kings’ cake Frenchs make with puff pastry. They fill it with a delicious frangipane. They eat this cake in France during the Epiphany, twelve nights after Christmas. In other words: today!
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Old fashioned as I am, of course, I wanted to make everything from scratch. But then, I didn’t have the time to make homemade puff pastry: roll it and roll it again and again to get the fluffy consistency of a good puff pastry.
So, I got it from the freeze at the store et voilà: I made this delicious galette des rois to celebrate the arrival of Los Tres Reyes Magos. This is how we name in Spanish the Three Kings or Three Magi. According to Mathew’s Gospel, they paid tribute to the Christ Child, bringing gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
A dessert to say goodbye to the holiday season…
The Epiphany, or Three Kings’ Day, also marks the end of the Christmas season. When I was a little girl, my sister Andreína and I used to get little presents and sweets. These gifts were supposedly left in our beds by the three exotic magi who traveled from the East to revere the newborn Messiah. We don’t get presents these days, but now that I live in America, I like to extend the holiday season by baking this delicious cake.
In Spain, this is the holiday when children and adults get presents and eat Rosca de Reyes, a delicious sweet bread in the shape of a wheel or crown filled with whipped cream and topped with candied fruit.
Galette des rois, a French dessert and tradition
In France, galettes des rois are so popular that some bakeries start selling them by December and keep doing that well after the Epiphany too.
French pâtissiers fill this cake with an almond cream called frangipane, inside the galette, they usually hide a fève (a bean or a figurine representing baby Jesus.) The one who gets the fève or figurine becomes king or queen for the day and even for the year! Isn’t this cool?
Instead of the fève or the figurine, I hid an almond. But if you freak out about somebody shocking or hurting a tooth, I have the solution. Simply hide a piece of chocolate or skip this part of the tradition.
I love galette des rois because who doesn’t love a buttery puff pastry filled with frangipane? This is a cake made in heaven for kings. I hope you like my recipe.
How to make Galette des rois
To make this recipe, you’ll need some ingredients and kitchen utensil utensils easily found online, including:
- Almond flour
- Confectioners sugar
- Almond extract
- Puff pastry
- Baking sheet
- Parchment paper
- Paring knife
Galette des rois
- 1 cup of almond flour
- 3/4 cup of confectioner sugar
- 3 tablespoons of butter
- 3 eggs for the frangipane almond crème plus 1 for the egg wash
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- ¼ teaspoon of kosher salt
- 1 almond
- 2 sheets of store-bought puff pastry I used Pepperidge Farms
- Preheat the oven to 400˚F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Make the frangipane (almond cream filling) by beating together the almond flour, sugar and butter, in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat until well combined.
- Add the eggs, one at a time and keep beating.
- Add the almond extract and salt and beat until well combined. Reserve.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out one of the puff pastry sheets and with the help of a round plate and a pairing knife, cut a circle. Save the leftovers for other uses.
- Carefully place the puff pastry circle into the lined baking sheet.
- Spread the frangipane on the puff pastry, forming a circle and leaving a 1 to 1 ½ inch border.
- Place the almond inside the frangipane, close to the border.
- On a floured surface, roll out the second puff pastry sheet and cut it into a circle too.
- In a small bowl, beat the egg for the egg wash and brush the border of the puff pastry circle with the frangipane.
- Place the second puff pastry circle on top and slightly press the border.
- With a butter knife and two fingers, decorate the border by pressing and creating and indentation.
- With a paring knife, open a little hole in the middle of the of the puff pastry and slightly cut the surface the hole to the border.
- Brush with the egg wash.
- Bake for 25 minutes until golden brown.
- Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.