How to make galette des rois

Cake designer Danielle Jackson reveals her recipe for traditional sweet treat made with perfect puff pastry

5 January 2015
By Danielle Jackson

Galette des rois are a common sight in supermarkets and bakeries across France at this time of year, as families across the country prepare to mark Epiphany.

But they’re just as easy to make at home - with or without the fève hidden inside as an extra surprise treat for one lucky recipient.

There are two types of galette des rois - one made with puff pastry is traditional to the north, while the other - a type of brioche - is more common in the south.

Danielle Jackson, who runs her own bespoke cake design business Desirderata in the Midi-Pyrenees, explained that the tasty treat, “is eaten traditionally on January 6, the day of Epiphany”.

But, she added: “It’s too delicious and easy to do to be eaten on only one day of the year!”

She explained: “Brandy or rum is used to give the frangipane an extra kick, but it can be replaced with milk for a child-friendly option.

“I recommend using good quality, shop-bought puff pastry, because if you buy a good one it’s just as tasty and puffy, and making it from scratch is very time consuming – when you really want to be consuming the galette, not your time.”

Here is Ms Jackson’s recipe for delicious, home-made galette des rois

Ingredients

  • 100g caster sugar
  • 100g softened, unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs (one for the frangipane and the other beaten for the glaze)
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1 tbsp rum, brandy (or milk)
  • plain flour (just for dusting)
  • 500g shop-bought puff pastry (ideally in block form, not already rolled)
  • 1 fève if wanted (a dried bean or small non-melting figurine)

Serves 6-8

Preparation time: approximately 30 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

Method

Preheat the oven to 200C (400F/gas mark 6) on the traditional setting (not fan) and line a baking tray with greaseproof paper.

In a bowl, cream together the sugar and butter using the electric whisk on a medium speed. Add the egg and whisk until fully blended.

Add the ground almonds, almond extract, and rum or brandy or milk, and whisk into a thick paste.

Dust the work surface with flour. Roll out the pastry to a rectangle of approximately 50cm x 25cm. The pastry should be 3-5mm thick.

Place a dinner plate or other round object on the dough and cut out 2 discs of 10inches / 25cm diameter with the sharp knife.

Put one of the dough discs in the middle of the lined baking tray. With the pastry brush, put a little beaten egg around the edge of the disc.

Spoon the frangipane paste on to the disc and smooth it evenly with the back of the spoon up to the egg line (do not go on to the egg or there will be spillage during baking). Press the fève into the paste.

Place the second disc of dough on top of the filling. Press down lightly around the edge to seal the pie with your fingertips or the back of a fork.

For an artistic touch, take a sharp knife and score the traditional spiral design on top of the pie being careful not to cut through the pastry. You can even cut out shapes from the leftover dough and place on top.

Brush the top of the pie evenly with the beaten egg.

Bake near the top of the oven for 30 minutes, until golden brown and puffy.

Take the galette des rois out of the oven and let it cool on its tray for five minutes before transferring to a wire rack. It can be served warm or cold.

The galette can be kept in an airtight container for three days. It can also be frozen for up to eight weeks.

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