Last year I sent the recipe for Galette des Roi along with some feves to friends. My son did a bit of research into the tradition to send with the recipe. I thought I would share his words with you. Every boulangerie and patisserie in France will be selling these throughout January even though I think the intention is for eating on 12th night to celebrate the arrival of the 3 Kings to the stable.
These have been a fun thing to make in the New Year until the end of January for centuries. The fun thing about them is that they come with a game. Inside each one is a “feve”: it used to be a dried feve bean but now it is a small ceramic figurine, and whoever’s slice it’s in shall be crowned king, or queen… for a day. The finder of the ‘feve’ can choose what that means.
Fun facts (or ones I found interesting)
- The tradition was founded by the Romans
- The youngest person in the family would go under the table as they were considered the most innocent (but this certainly isn’t the case here)
- The biggest galette des Rois ever made was 30 metres in diameter.
- 32 million are sold in France each year.
How to make them:
Make the frangipane – mix 125g butter and 125g sugar (warm the butter in the microwave if it is too hard), then add 125g of ground almonds. Separate an egg and add the white to 2 other eggs and mix with the almonds, butter and sugar.
Make the Galette – Unroll a round sheet of ready made flaky pastry onto a baking tray, lined with baking paper. Spread the frangipani in the middle up to 2 cm from the edge. Add the “feve”. Wet the edge of the pastry circle then lay a second round sheet of pastry on top and press down all round to seal.
Mark the top and brush with the egg yolk.
Cook for 30-40 mins until golden at 200C.
Use anything that can be baked as a feve – it could be a baking bean for baking tart cases or like in the Xmas pudding tradition in the UK a sterilised coin.
Get someone to make the crown.