Galette des Rois

This French dessert, also known as Twelfth Night cake or King cake, is traditionally topped with a gold crown and served on Epiphany (January 6th). The one who finds the hidden charm (or bean) in their slice gets to wear the crown!

1 package frozen puff pastry (two blocks), thawed

1 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

2 1/4 cup blanched almonds

3 large eggs, lightly beaten

1/2 tsp. vanilla

1 Tbsp. rum

1 small trinket or large dried bean

1 gold paper crown

for the glaze, 1 more egg, lightly beaten


Preheat oven to 375°F. On a lightly floured surface, roll out 1 block of puff pastry to form a 10-inch square. Using a sharp knife, cut out a 10-inch round, using a dinner plate as a guide. Repeat this step with the second block of puff pastry. Using a sharp paring knife, decorate one round with “s” shaped cuts, like swirly spokes going from the centre to the edge of the round.  To make the filling, combine butter, sugar, ground almonds, vanilla and rum. Add the three lightly beaten eggs and mix until well blended. To assemble, place the undecorated round of pastry on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread almond filling over the circle, leaving a 1-inch border. Using a pastry brush, glaze the border with lightly beaten egg. Place a trinket or dried bean in the filling. Place the decorated round of pastry over the filling, pressing the edges to seal. Glaze the top with lightly beaten egg. Chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour. Remove and bake for 25 minutes, or until the pastry has puffed up and is golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Decorate with the gold paper crown.


Note: if it is your first time observing this tradition, don’t forget to warn everyone about the hidden charm or bean!


From web editor Rebecca Baugniet’s compendium 500 Pies and Tarts, Sellers Publishing, 2007.

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