The Galette des Rois or the Cake of Kings is a flat pastry cake with a sweet filling which is made in France to celebrate Epiphany or Twelfth night. during the French Revolution it was called “Gâteau de l’egalité”.
The tradition of Epiphany is the Christian celebration when three wise men or the three kings made their journey to visit infant Jesus.
The cake is made with a charm hidden inside, which in previous times used to be a fava bean but nowadays is usually a ceramic figure. The cake is placed on the table to be cut into portions for everyone at the family celebration. Traditionally, a child hides under the table and shouts out the name of the people to receive a portion of the cake. Whoever receives the piece with the hidden charm is the lucky person or child and becomes king or queen for the day.
For the Galette:
500g of puff pastry
12-15 cl water
1 egg yolk
For the cream:
60 g ground almonds
1 tablespoon of kirsch
60 g caster sugar
60 g butter, melted
1 egg, lightly beaten
Pre-heat the oven at 200°C.
Mix the sugar with the ground almonds.
Add the beaten egg, the melted butter and the kirsch
As you mix, if the cream becomes too thick, add a little crème fraiche.
Roll out the puff pastry and make two identical circles (a tea plate can be used for a guide)
Spread the cream on the first pastry round and place your charm in the mixture to hide it.
Cover with the second pastry round and seal the edges with a little beaten egg.
Spread a mixture of egg yolk and water on the top with a brush. At this point try not to spread the mixture to the edges (you don't want it to ooze out as it is cooking).
Make few holes on the top of the pastry to allow the steam to escape.
Bake for about 30 minutes or until it has risen and is golden brown.