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Galette Des Rois

by . Featured in HOW TO BE A DOMESTIC GODDESS
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Introduction

I should come clean about my interest in the traditions of the Epiphany: it also happens to be my birthday, and I find following French tradition by eating this cheers me more than taking down the Christmas decorations. The galette itself is simple: puff pastry covering a disc of damp frangipane, hidden within which is a china bean or charm; the person who gets this charm becomes king for the day and is crowned with the gold-paper crown which comes automatically with the cake as sold in French pâtisseries.

Obviously you could make your own puff pastry but I generally use shop-bought puff pastry, though you'll need to get the square wodges of puff in 500g packets, since the ready-rolled kind isn’t big enough to line or cover the tin (and see Additional Info below for what to do if you can only get ready-rolled).

And please read the Additional Information section at the end of the recipe before proceeding.

For US cup measures, use the toggle at the top of the ingredients list.

I should come clean about my interest in the traditions of the Epiphany: it also happens to be my birthday, and I find following French tradition by eating this cheers me more than taking down the Christmas decorations. The galette itself is simple: puff pastry covering a disc of damp frangipane, hidden within which is a china bean or charm; the person who gets this charm becomes king for the day and is crowned with the gold-paper crown which comes automatically with the cake as sold in French pâtisseries.

Obviously you could make your own puff pastry but I generally use shop-bought puff pastry, though you'll need to get the square wodges of puff in 500g packets, since the ready-rolled kind isn’t big enough to line or cover the tin (and see Additional Info below for what to do if you can only get ready-rolled).

And please read the Additional Information section at the end of the recipe before proceeding.

For US cup measures, use the toggle at the top of the ingredients list.

Ingredients

Serves: 8

Metric Cups
  • 1 x 500 grams block puff pastry
  • 200 grams ground almonds
  • 125 grams unsalted butter (very soft indeed)
  • 125 grams caster sugar
  • 25 grams plain flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange flower water
  • 1 x 17.3 ounce packet puff pastry
  • 2 cups almond meal
  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter (very soft indeed)
  • ⅔ cup superfine sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange flower water

Method

You will need:

  • a dried broad bean or charm, such as a little china figure
  • a gold-paper crown
  1. Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/400°F, putting a baking sheet in to heat up at the same time.
  2. Cut a third off the block of puff pastry and put to one side. And then roll out the rest of puff pastry until you can cut out a big enough circle to line the bottom and sides of a 20cm/8inch springform tin, with a generous overhang. Roll out the remaining third of puff pastry until you’ve got enough to cut out a circle about 5cm/2inches more than the diameter of the tin so it will fit as a lid with some overhang also.
  3. Make the frangipane by put all the remaining ingredients (i.e., from ground almonds down to orange-flower water) into a processor and whizz until all’s amalgamated.
  4. Dollop the frangipane into the puff pastry lined tin, hide the charm somewhere, level with a spatula, then place the top round to cover so that it sits on the layer of frangipane.
  5. Using scissors (it’s easiest) snip off the overhang so that both top and bottom layers of pastry have only about 2–3cm/1inch excess around the edge. Curl the edges over inwards, so that you’ve got a tightly-furled sealed rim, and then press all round with the tines of a fork.
  6. Now decorate the top of the galette: make a small hole (with the point of a small, sharp knife) in the centre, and then, using the same knifepoint, draw swirly lines, like elongated S’s, coming out from the centre towards the cake’s rim.
  7. Place on the hot baking sheet in the oven and bake for 30–40 minutes until the pastry is golden and well risen. Remove to a wire rack and leave for at least 20 minutes before unclipping. Adorn with crown (or not, as you wish) and present it to the person who gets the charm.

You will need:

  • a dried broad bean or charm, such as a little china figure
  • a gold-paper crown
  1. Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/400°F, putting a baking sheet in to heat up at the same time.
  2. Cut a third off the block of puff pastry and put to one side. And then roll out the rest of puff pastry until you can cut out a big enough circle to line the bottom and sides of a 20cm/8inch springform tin, with a generous overhang. Roll out the remaining third of puff pastry until you’ve got enough to cut out a circle about 5cm/2inches more than the diameter of the tin so it will fit as a lid with some overhang also.
  3. Make the frangipane by put all the remaining ingredients (i.e., from almond meal down to orange-flower water) into a processor and whizz until all’s amalgamated.
  4. Dollop the frangipane into the puff pastry lined tin, hide the charm somewhere, level with a spatula, then place the top round to cover so that it sits on the layer of frangipane.
  5. Using scissors (it’s easiest) snip off the overhang so that both top and bottom layers of pastry have only about 2–3cm/1inch excess around the edge. Curl the edges over inwards, so that you’ve got a tightly-furled sealed rim, and then press all round with the tines of a fork.
  6. Now decorate the top of the galette: make a small hole (with the point of a small, sharp knife) in the centre, and then, using the same knifepoint, draw swirly lines, like elongated S’s, coming out from the centre towards the cake’s rim.
  7. Place on the hot baking sheet in the oven and bake for 30–40 minutes until the pastry is golden and well risen. Remove to a wire rack and leave for at least 20 minutes before unclipping. Adorn with crown (or not, as you wish) and present it to the person who gets the charm.

Additional Information

For the US: puff pastry is sold not in blocks but only as rolled sheets. One sheet isn’t big enough to do the base on its own as it is around 9.75 x 10.5 inches and if you roll it wider it will probably be too thin. So, lay one sheet of puff pastry on top of the other and press down slightly with a rolling pin to stick the sheets together. Cut off one third and set aside. Roll the stacked sheets out so that they make a circle big enough to line the base and sides of the springform pan and line the pan. Roll the remaining third of pastry out to a circle to fit the top of the galette.

For the US: puff pastry is sold not in blocks but only as rolled sheets. One sheet isn’t big enough to do the base on its own as it is around 9.75 x 10.5 inches and if you roll it wider it will probably be too thin. So, lay one sheet of puff pastry on top of the other and press down slightly with a rolling pin to stick the sheets together. Cut off one third and set aside. Roll the stacked sheets out so that they make a circle big enough to line the base and sides of the springform pan and line the pan. Roll the remaining third of pastry out to a circle to fit the top of the galette.

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