Homemade Galette des Rois Recipe

If you’ve ever been in France during the month of January, surely you’ve noticed the blossoming of galettes des rois in the window of every bakery and pastry shop. A puff pastry pie garnished with a buttery filling, it is the traditional confection with which the Epiphany is celebrated*; I have written in more detail about this tradition in this post, so I invite you to go and read that first. I’ll wait right here.

La galette, and the fun ritual that determines who will be king or queen for the day (allow me to insist you read this post if you don’t yet know about the fève thing), bring back many a happy childhood memory for me. Aside from the two years I spent in California, I have partaken of at least one galette a year for as long as I can remember.

My first homemade galette des rois!

I used to buy them from the pastry shop, like most French people do, but I started making my own a few years ago.

My deep attachment to this confection should have compelled me to do so years earlier, but the Epiphany is theoretically celebrated on January 6 — though this is extended to the whole month of January nowadays — and I always felt a bit too tuckered out after the holidays to tackle the project.

But that inaugural year was different. We were celebrating my parents’ 40th wedding anniversary one Saturday, my sister, brother-in-law and nephew were visiting from London for the occasion, and my mother had asked if I could bring the dessert for our celebratory lunch. It seemed the perfect opportunity to share a galette with my family, and I had just enough time to make it myself.

My initial intention was to make my own puff pastry, using this easy puff pastry formula, but I didn’t quite have it in me so I decided to use store-bought puff pastry. Not just any store-bought puff pastry, mind you, but Madame François’ puff pastry, which is produced in Sologne with butter from the Charentes, farine de gruau (fine wheat flour) and zero additives. I got it from G. Detou, where it is sold in slabs of 3 kilos, ready to be divided, shared and/or frozen; it can also be ordered on their website**.

What’s inside a galette des rois?

The stuffing was crème d’amande, not frangipane. There is a lot of confusion between the two, so here’s the difference: crème d’amande (almond cream) is a simple mix of butter, sugar, ground almonds, and eggs, more or less in equal parts. Frangipane, on the other hand, is a blend of crème d’amande and crème pâtissière (pastry cream), which in turn is made with eggs, milk, sugar, and flour or cornstarch.

Most galettes sold out there are filled with frangipane rather than crème d’amande — the production cost of frangipane is a lot lower, since the almonds are the most expensive ingredient in there — but my preference goes to crème d’amande, which makes a more delicate, less eggy, more flavorful filling.

As for the all-important fève (read here to know what that is), I had wisely saved the one Maxence got when we ate a galette des rois at my cousin’s a week before: it is a little porcelain tower of some sort that seems like the tip might pierce the roof of your mouth if you’re really out of luck, but this is France, where people don’t really sue one another for that sort of thing***.

Mini Cookbook of French Tarts

I consulted countless recipes, watched numerous videos including this one, and merged all the things I’d learned into my own version, with a little hazelnut flour in the stuffing.

The making of the galette itself really wasn’t difficult at all, at least for someone with a minimum of baking experience: you spread the puff pastry into two circles, spread crème d’amande on the first, cover it with the second, score, eggwash, and bake.

The only slightly tricky steps are: 1- not forgetting to place the fève in the filling (a horrifying prospect), 2- placing the top circle precisely over the first, 3- sealing it properly so the filling won’t escape, and 4- making sure the eggwash doesn’t drip over the edges of the puff pastry, otherwise it might not rise to its full potential.

I did get some guidance from my personal galette hotline, i.e. my friend Pascale, whom I asked if I could prepare everything a day in advance and bake the galette on the day of: she said I could freeze it overnight, and bake it straight from the freezer in the morning. She even mentioned that puff pastry rises higher if it’s been frozen at some point.

It worked perfectly: I woke up, preheated the oven, slipped the frozen galette inside, and tried my best to occupy myself with other things — watched puff pastry never rises — until it was ready, golden brown, puffy, and gorgeous.

Transporting my homemade galette des rois

The bonus challenge I faced was transporting the galette to my parents’ apartment — on Maxence’s scooter. I improvised a cake carrier out of two cereal boxes, inserted it in the compartment under the seat, and hoped for the best. Maxence was very careful to avoid bumps and ruts, and although we were practically run down by our squealing nephew upon arrival, the galette made it safely to my mother’s kitchen, then to our table, where it was received with enthusiasm and compliments. My father even declared he’d never eaten such a flavorful galette des rois, and he’d said that about Pierre Hermé’s before (a completely unbiased opinion, to be sure).

And as luck (and possibly karma) would have it, I got the fève, which means I could save it for the next year, when I made another galette: once you know how rewarding and fun it is to make your own, there’s no turning back, I’m afraid.

Feeling up for the project yourself? You have until the end of January to do so — at least that’s when the French stop eating galettes (and stop wishing one another a happy new year). And if it feels too tight, well, the recipe will be right here waiting for you next year!

Galette des rois

* Except in the south of France, where the gâteau des rois — a ring-shaped brioche studded with candied fruit — takes its place.

** If that’s not an option, use the best quality puff pastry you can find and afford. Ideally, it will be made with just flour, butter, water, and salt (no other type of fat, and no preservatives or additives); in France, the one that is sold by Picard is said to be the best option in its range.

*** I’ve read that some French-style bakeries established in the US simply place a whole almond instead of a trinket in their galettes, to avoid any broken tooth incident.

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Homemade Galette des Rois Recipe

Prep Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours

Serves 6 to 8.

Homemade Galette des Rois Recipe


  • 500 grams (17 2/3 ounces) all-butter puff pastry, thawed if frozen (you can use my recipe for quick and easy puff pastry)
  • For the crème d'amande:
  • 100 grams (7 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
  • 100 grams (1/2 cup) sugar (I used a blond unrefined cane sugar)
  • 110 grams (1 cup plus 1 tablespoon) almond flour (= almond meal or finely ground almonds*)
  • 20 grams (2 tablespoons) hazelnut flour or finely ground hazelnuts** (optional; you can also use all almond meal as in the classic galette, 130 grams total or 1 cup and 3 tablespoons)
  • 8 grams (1 tablespoon) corn starch (in France, this is known under the brand name Maïzena)
  • a good pinch sea salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 drop almond extract (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon orange flower water or a liquor of your choice, such as Grand Marnier or rum
  • For the eggwash and glaze:
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon confectioner's sugar
  • Accessories:
  • 1 porcelain trinket or dried bean
  • 2 paper crowns


    1. Prepare the crème d'amande.
  1. Beat the butter until creamy, but avoid incorporating air into it. In a bowl, combine the sugar, almonds, hazelnuts, corn starch, and salt. Stir with a whisk to remove any lump. Add to the creamed butter and mix until smooth. Add the almond extract and orange flower water, then the eggs, one at a time, mixing well between each addition. Cover and refrigerate for an hour or overnight.
  2. Crème d'amande
    2. Roll out the puff pastry.
  3. Divide the puff pastry in 2 equal pieces, and roll each one out to form a rough circle a little larger than 30 cm (12 inches) in diameter. Use a sharp knife and an upturned plate of the right dimension to cut a neat 30-cm (12-inch) circle out of one, and a slightly larger one with the other, adding, say, 6 mm (1/4 inch) all around the edge of the plate.
  4. 3. Assemble the galette.
  5. Place the smaller of the two circles on a piece of parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. In a small bowl, combine the egg yolk with a tablespoon water (or milk, if you have it handy) until smooth. Using a pastry brush, brush the outer rim of the dough lightly with the eggwash by a width of about 2.5 cm (1 inch). Make sure not to wet the actual edge of the dough, or it will impede its rise.
  6. Pour the crème d'amande in the center and spread it out inside the eggwash ring with a spatula.
  7. Place a porcelain fève, a dried bean, or the trinket of your choice in the crème d'amande -- not in the center but closer to an edge, or your knife will keep running into it when you divide the galette. And if it is an elongated shape, make sure to orient it straight toward the center of the galette, again, to minimize the possibility of you hitting it with your knife (as you see in the picture below, mine was not, and sure enough, I cut right into the top of the little tower). Press it down gently to bury it.
  8. Stuffing
  9. Transfer the second round of dough precisely on top of the first, smooth it out gently over the crème d'amande to remove any air pocket, and press it down all around the sides to seal.
  10. Closed
    4. Score the galette.
  11. Using the back of the tip of your knife (i.e. the dull side), draw a decorative pattern on top of the galette: a diamond-shaped grid, optionally with double or triple lines, a flower pattern... see examples here, here, or here.
  12. I chose to make a sun pattern as demonstrated in this video: you start from the center and draw an arc to reach the edge of the galette in a single, smooth gesture, exercising just enough pressure to score the dough without piercing it. You then turn the galette ever so slightly, draw a similar arc nested in the first one, and repeat until the entire galette is scored.
  13. Scored
  14. Holding your knife upright, blade down, and using the dull side of the blade, push the dough inward where each sun ray ends, to create a festooned pattern.
  15. Chiquetée
  16. Brush the top of the galette lightly with the eggwash: again, make sure it doesn't drip over the edges, or the eggwash will seal the layers of the puff pastry in this spot and it won't develop as well. Let it rest a minute then brush it lightly again with the eggwash. (As you can see on the picture below, my eggwash pooled a bit around the bulge of the crème d'amande, which resulted in a darker coloring around the sides; I didn't mind, but I'll be more careful next time.)
  17. Using the tip of your knife, pierce 5 holes in the top dough -- one in the center, and four around the sides, piercing through the pattern you've drawn -- to ensure an even rise.
  18. Eggwash
  19. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet or a tart pan with a removable bottom, and refrigerate for 1 hour. (Alternatively, you can place the galette in the freezer at this point, on the baking sheet or pan, and bake it the next day. Although I haven't tried it, I'm sure you could prepare it up to a week or so in advance: once the galette is thoroughly frozen, transfer it to a tightly sealed bag to avoid freezer burn.)
  20. In pan
    5. Bake the galette.
  21. Preheat the oven to 180°C (360°F); if the galette was in the freezer, take it out while the oven preheats. Insert the galette in the middle of the oven and bake for 30 minutes (35 if it was frozen), until puffy and golden brown.
  22. In the final minutes of baking, combine the tablespoon of confectioner's sugar with a tablespoon very hot water (heated until boiling in the kettle or the microwave). When the galette is done, remove it from the oven, brush it across the top with the syrup, and return it to the oven for a minute; this will give it a shiny finish.
  23. Place on a rack to cool completely (it will settle as it cools) and serve at room temperature. (Some people prefer it slightly warm, so they reheat it slightly in a warm oven before serving.) The traditional pairing is with Champagne or hard cider.
  24. Have one of the guests (usually the youngest) hide under the table if he's willing, or at least cover his eyes or turn his back to the table. Cut the galette into servings and, for each serving, have the guest decide who should have it. If your guests are unfamiliar with the tradition, make sure you warn everyone that a fève may be hiding in their slice. Whoever finds it is king/queen for the day, receives a paper crown, and gets to pick his/her queen/king (or king/queen for that matter) by giving her/him the second paper crown.
  25. Galette des rois


  • I provided volume conversions, but for best results I strongly recommend you weigh the ingredients for this recipe.
  • I normally mention that you can also grind your own almonds, but here it is worth seeking out almond meal (you'll find it at natural food stores and Middle-Eastern markets): it is a lot more finely ground than what you could achieve at home, and this will make the crème d'amande incomparably smooth.
  • Read more about the hazelnut flour I used. Alternatively, you can grind the hazelnuts yourself if you prefer: place 20 grams (3 tablespoons) shelled hazelnuts in a blender with 2 tablespoons of the sugar used in the crème d'amande, and pulse until finely ground.


Galette des rois

This post was first published in January 2010 and updated in January 2017.

  • Galette via scooter – you are a brave, brave woman! I’m certain that I won’t find that puff pastry in a store near me, but that is not going to stop me from trying this beautiful galette.

  • Kathryn

    Yours came out so much prettier than mine did! I lived in France last year, and now that I’m back in the States, I wanted to try to re-create a galette. I made an almond galette, and the filling leaked all over the place. From the photo, your filing looks thicker than mine. I’ll have to try your recipe next!

    • I used to buy them from the pastry shop, like most French people do, but I started making my own a few years ago.

  • This is beautiful! I enjoyed this treat about 5 years ago when I lived in Paris for a month in January. Brings back sweet memories :)

  • Clotilde this galette look amazing and delicious! gloria

  • I’m impressed! I had a French coworker for a couple years, and I loved when she baked these for the office. So delicious!

  • soozzie

    Looks delightful. Unfortunately, the only time I ever had such a cake was before I knew how special it was….

    Now, how about a kouign amann cake? Any tips? Can I use puff pastry for that as well?

  • This looks so much better than the King’s Cake they sell at Publix around this time of the year. I would love to try it. It looks delicious!


  • Thank you for this recipe and bit of history. I’ve never celebrated Ephiphony. It’s not a big holiday in the US, but I’ve always wanted to celebrate and didn’t know how. Now I do. Thank goodness January 6 has passed. It’s going to take me a year of practicing this recipe to perfect it. Does not look easy at all, but worth the try.

    Thanks again!


  • The Paris Food Blague

    salut! what a great post. i tried my own galette this year, and blogged about it. i also was forced to buy puff pastry. but yours sounds much more fancy.

    that is hilarious about the US bakeries. jeez. i guess those are the same people who think lait cru will kill you.

    a plus!
    -The Paris Food Blague

  • Oh yes, since we can not find Galette des Rois in the US, my husband makes at least one every year (pastry dough AND filling)! My children love it and, somehow, always get the feve!!He has frozen a few more this year so that we could have more… Can’t wait!!

  • Joan

    Congratulations Clotilde! Your first Galette de Rois :-) Thanks so much for the photos ~ beautiful, step by step..

    Every so often a friend in Orange sends me feves and the paper crowns. The feves remind me of the threepences and sixpences that would be included in the plum pudding mixture. No crowns with that British tradition.

    40th wedding anniversary..how lovely!

  • Maureen in Oakland

    I have been wanting to attempt this every year for a while, and next year, thanks to you, I will have no excuse! Thanks for posting this.

  • Janet

    After your simple roasted potatoes you followed up with this fascinating recipe, which I read like the true observer that I am, never intending to attempt it. Thanks for the chances to cook vicariously through you, always a joy.

  • Beautiful! Galettes des rois is available in Tokyo too, and many fancy kicking off the new year with it :)

  • In Spain Epiphany Day is the Xmas gift-exchanging Day. It’s typical to breakfast with hot thick chocolate and a portion of “roscón de reyes” that, for what you’ve explained, it’s very similar to the Gâteau des Rois eaten in Southern France.
    In Asturias (Northern Spain) they have something similar to your Galette for Epiphany Day, and in Catalonia eat a mixture between Galette and Gâteau des Rois: a ring shaped brioche filled with marzipan.

  • est

    well done clotilde! it looks super professionnal and absolutely delicious!!

  • this.is.heidi

    Yay, Clothilde! I too, made the jump and prepared my own galette de roi. What a difference! And you are right, really it was not that difficult – more prep/step basis.
    Alas, I FORGOT TO ADD THE FEVE! doink…whatever, the galette was realy good. Now, I am excited about giving your recipe a try! I have a few more days to do so!


  • Deliciously lively post, for a certainly “excellentissime” galette, and I love the idea of a “personal galette hotline”!

  • Your photos are all wonderful, everything looks so scrumptious!

  • This definitely brings me memories of my years living in Paris – the technician in our lab used to bring a galette des Rois to share with us when everybody was back from Christmas break.

    it was fun to try and guess who would get the trinket

    Yours looks like a work of art, amazing job!

  • Your galette is gorgeous! I will be trying this one out–such a yummy tradition! I will attempt the puff pastry…never have been good about the store bought stuff–but your suggestions of how to pick a good-quality paste is helpful. Thanks!

  • In Louisiana people eat King Cake for Mardi Gras….it is a very different cake from Galette…

  • so excited to try this! i had my first bite of a galette des roi this weekend and i have been thinking about it ever since. a friend who happens to be a pastry chef PURCHASED it from a french bakery in toronto that is so good that it’s the only place he buys things from. so i trust i had a good enough representation. it was enough to make me obsessed with it!

  • Clotilde, it’s just beautiful. Your sunburst pattern is even better than Laduree’s! Wonderful step-by-step photos.

  • Rachel

    In all the times I’ve eaten galette des rois, I’ve never gotten the feve. Clearly the solution is to make the galette oneself! ;) Yours is the most beautiful I’ve ever seen, and I look forward to trying it myself.

  • It’s gorgious and I really love the pattern and of course the story with the travelling.

  • you should be given an award for transporting this beautiful galette des rois on a scooter!!

  • It looks so beautiful I want to try it now! Thank you for the photos.

  • Martine


  • Beautiful! Love the story and the scoring; a work art. I’ve kept away from baking but this has inspired me. I must try!

  • Absolutely stunning! I especially appreciate the photos of how to style the puff pastry–such an elaborate looking design is actually quite simple!

  • Oh my. I can’t believe how pretty it turned out… the finished galette looks even more beautiful than the unbaked one you previewed on Twitter.
    And how brave are you to transport it by scooter after all your hard work? I’m in awe. :)

  • I love every thing made by buff pastry

  • Bravo on getting the galette safely to its destination by scooter! I’ve disfigured so many cakes and tarts taking them to parties by Metro, motorbike and even car that I tend to stick to cookies these days.

  • Oh this is perfect. Thank you so very much for posting every little detail along with photos of the progress. January’s not over yet. Perhaps I’ll give it a go next week. Ohhh I miss Paris!

  • Its looking very pretty. Recipe looks very easy to prepare. I am going to try out soon. very mouth watering dish

  • The gateau des rois sounds much like the New Orleans king cake, thanks for that info. I had always wondered, knowing about this galette which seemed so different from it.

    Galettes like yours are available at least one, if not two or three of the french bakeries in town.

    Most of the time, we still have a plastic baby inside of our king cakes, rarely a porcelain charm, but not in the ones shipped to out of towners.

  • What a beautiful job you did on your galette! And got rewarded by getting the little baby.
    The Mardi Gras King Cake is quite different, but with the same thought behind it. The galette is elegant, the King Cake is gaudy. both are fun to eat!

  • My family always celebrates Epiphany but our local bakery stopped putting in the feve (probably because they were sued!) so this year my sister made our galette using a very similar recipe. Divine!

  • Alex

    I was raised in Florida, but was raised in a French family and I LOVE your blog!
    So funny…I wanted to make my own gallet this year too, but when I came to your blog the week of the 6th of January I was surprised that you didn’t have the recipe on here..but here it is!
    I ended up making both kinds..with the frangipane and la crème d’amande, and have to admit I liked la creme d’amande version better (Eventhough I ended up just grinding the almonds myself, the creme was a little chunky).
    I also purchased my puff pastry but next time I’m going to try to make it too!
    Thanks for the lovely pictures!!

  • Aisha

    Ah if only you had posted this 3 days earlier!!! Your galette is sooo pretty and exactly fits the filling/crust ratio I like. I tried my hand at a galette on Monday after scouring the web for recipes (your site was the first I checked only to find, to my dismay, a review of a Pierre Herme galette instead of a recipe) and took it to work. It wasn’t a very pretty sight but it tasted good. I did feel, though, as I was making it that the filling was too runny and eggy. But your recipe solves my problem: 2 eggs only and some added cornstarch perfect!
    I did make it with homemade pate feuilletee that I made the same day (classic method… I have to try inverted now) so I was still quite happy with the result considering it was my very first try. Your tips about not letting the egg wash pool make complete sense to me as I watched my top layer rise beautifully then got disappointed at the rise of the edges and bottom.
    I’ll have to find new victims to test my galette-making skills on!

  • Aisha

    Gah! I blabbered so much in my previous post that I forgot to ask the all-important question. How thick should the layers of pate feuilletee be? Since I made my own instead of using store-bought, I did not know the thickness of ready-made versions and couldn’t find recipes that indicated how thick they should be. Thanks for your help!

  • Vidya

    I’ve just returned from a 6 week exchange program in Paris, during which I ate so many galettes, it was insane…I saw a lot of Avatar-themed fèves around. My second favourite galette was a homemade one, and my favourite was a deliciously very almondy storebought version. I did however also eat one or two that were extremely greasy, dripping butter all over my hands, and sickening to eat. I need to find an occasion to make this now…I think I have a few parties around the corner that want me to bring dessert…

  • Hi! I live in Luxembourg (as an American expat) where galette des rois are sold in both apple and frangipane varieties. Is apple traditional too? I’ve also wondered where to buy feves. I’ve seen oodles of them on ebay, but surely they must be available in a baking shop. Any ideas.

  • Quelle aventure! Jamais fait de galette mais je meurs d’envie d’essayer! Par contre, je préfèrerais la faire pour le jour même de l’épiphanie donc j’attendrai l’année prochaine…

  • Je ne sais pas s’ils le font toujours (j’ai déménagé et n’y fais plus mes courses), mais certains hypermarchés Carrefour vendaient des gros blocs de pâte feuilletée maison au rayon pâtisserie fraîche. Sans conservateurs, sans additifs. Délicieuse.

  • I’m about to follow your recipe… Can guarantee it won’t come out as well as yours tho. Why is it the French let their celebrations drift on? The galettes des rois, as you say, can be found throughout Jan. Similarly, I was in France at the end of last week and most places still has their Christmas decorations up.

  • i love the idea of having this pastry at your fingertips!

    yum :)

  • All – Thank you very much for your comments and compliments, I’m so glad you find the post inspiring and helpful!

    Aisha – I would say the dough should work out to be about 2 mm in thickness.

    Katy – I’ve only recently heard about apple galettes, so I’m not exactly sure about the regional factor on this one, but they sound really good, too.

    As for the fèves, I know you can buy them in bags of ten at Mora, a professional baking equipment store in Paris (type “feve” in the search box). Other than that, eBay’s a good idea, or you can just choose a little porcelain trinket you might already own.

  • Elle est très chic ta galette, un vrai bijou!

  • Shirli

    My French friend Annie had her brother visiting from Alsace this Jan. and made a Gallete des Rois for their family gathering. I now have the recipe to share with my family. It sounds delicious! This is my first time on your site, it’s fabulous.

    Thank you,

  • I learned several somethings new today…with lovely pictures too! Thanks!

  • This is absolutely beautiful. I loved the way that you scored the pastry. Perfect! How did you get it to your parent’s home on your bike? Thanks for the inspiration.

  • Salut Clotilde,
    I saw your link on Kelly’s new blog and am amazed about how affectionate and lovely your blog is!
    All the best,

  • I’ve recently started to write your blog. Love your design, photos and of course the recipes. What blogsytem do you use? Have a lovely Sunday!

  • It was one of my favorite traditions when I lived in France. This cake looks like a real labor of love, but it is worth the effort.

  • Gwen

    Dear Clotilde,

    Congratulations on this beautiful galette. I wish I could say my try at following your recipe produced comparable results. It did not, and as a result I don’t expect this comment to ever appear on the blog (this is from past experiences with your recipes).
    What initially attracted me to your blog was the air of utter ease and spontaneity your posts had to them: it looked simple. Well, it’s not. There is a reason by bakers, confectioners and chefs actually take this activity to professional levels: because that’s what it takes to get decent results. Making a decent galette is not for the lay cook, even if that lay cook is perfectly able to prepare good daily meals.
    The crème d’amande worked beautifully and tastes fabulous. The puff pastry on the other hand, was a mess. I did use ready made puff pastry (Dufour Pastry Kitchens, for all of you in the US who don’t have a boulangerie on your block). And then I “rolled out the puff pastry”.
    Is puff pastry supposed to shrink back every time you lift your rolling pin ? I don’t know. After many tries and my puff pastry starting to show signs of tear I just had to cut the largest circle I could and accept that it shrunk back to about the size of a dessert plate.
    The same thing of course happenned when I tried to seal the 2 discs of dough together: the top one kept shrinking until eventually the discs separated.
    Maybe you’ve never had such an experience with pastry dough. But I do believe that step would have required a few more words of explanation.
    As for the 54 comments before me, I’d be curious to know how many have/will try to do this recipe and of those, how many will succeed. Just for my own peace of mind ;o)

  • Gwen – I’m sorry your puff pastry proved difficult to work with. I’ve never had shrinkage problems myself, but I’ve never worked with the one you mention, so it’s hard to determine what went wrong exactly.

    What I do know is that if you find that the dough you’re working with tends to spring back — and this is true of any dough: puff pastry, short crust pastry, pizza dough, bread dough… — you can let it rest for a few moments on the work surface before you start handling it again. This allows the gluten strands to relax and make the dough more cooperative.

  • Val

    I’m quite new to your blog and I wanted to let you know how inspiring I find it.

    Congratulations on such a successful first try at a galettes des rois.

    You do make it look so temptingly easy. One January (definitely not this one) I hope to give it a try but only once I’m better acquainted with puff pastry! Well done!

  • Pia

    I know you said that it is worth seeking out almond meal but we have so many almonds in Puglia that I’m going to try to make my own. Wish me luck. Many of rainy days coming up calling for lots of baking.

  • Gwen

    Hi Clotilde,
    Thanks for your answer and tip, I’ll try if I am ever confronted to this problem again. And thanks for proving me wrong also ;o)

  • Those look simply scrumptious! Thanks for sharing a lovely, detailed recipe.

  • Zoe

    Ah, this brought back so many memories. When I lived in France, my adoptive “father”, a pastry chef by trade, had a habit of including several feves – a king, a queen, various courtiers etc – in fact, one for each child present, thereby pre-empting the bickering that usually followed if there was only one! I still have the ones I “won”. I can just imagine yours tasting just like his – so much better than the bought variety, even in France.

  • Eleanor

    I am new to pastries (as you soon will find out), but I was so excited to start this recipe. I spent the afternoon going to a specialty store to get the puff pastry and the almond meal and then set to work with my laptop in front of me. At the beginning, things went pretty well, and although my pastry was way uglier than yours, I was still hopeful. But, to my complete horror, as soon as the pastry got warm in the oven, ALL of the wonderful buttery/hazelnutty/almondy filling seeped out of the sides and onto the bottom of the oven, where it promptly burned. I tried to spoon as much of the filling onto the top of the pastry as I could and let it continue cooking. I was surprised to find that it didn’t taste too bad, although completely disfigured. This could be the start of a very ugly pastry career.

  • Pia – Having access to local almonds is the one exception to the rule. :)

    Eleanor – I haven’t had a problem with the filling escaping myself, but from what I’ve read, it is a typical pitfall that can be prevented by two things: 1- sealing the two circles well with the egg wash (as described in step 3 above) and 2- refrigerating the galette before baking (as described in step 4 above). Could it be that you missed one or the other of those steps? If it makes you feel any better, an experienced galette baker recently told me that her latest leaked big time…

  • Jennifer

    Success! I even managed my own feuilletage inversé using Organic Valley European style cultured butter. Worked splendidly, and the test bit that I baked turned out gorgeously in flavor and texture.

    I have always enjoyed your recipes and my co-workers have been as well!

  • Superbe galette ! Elle brille bien et a une jolie couleur

  • Susan

    Hi Clotilde, thanks for the carefully detailed post. I read Eleanor’s post before launching into my own effort, and I must confess, alas, that I did not take its warning seriously enough and suffered a similar fate. I did both 1) and 2), but I resettled the upper crust a couple of times in trying to get the air bubbles out. I think this had a negative impact on the quality of the seal. I do not have a tart pan, so that I tried to bake my galette on parchment paper on a cookie sheet — in my case the drippings caught fire upon contact with the oven’s heating element. Oh, my! I did manage to recover and bake my galette to completion, and to my amazement it turned out fairly well despite its rather poor start. However, perhaps the use of a pan with a lip ought be strongly recommended? Thanks for sharing the recipe; I will be glad to try it again next year!

    p.s. The story was the hit of my party (on Jan. 31) even if sadly the galette was not! (I wisely decided to share just the story.)

  • Susan – Thanks a lot for reporting back; I’m sorry you had a problem with the filling leaking.

    In your case, as you suggested, readjusting the top circle of dough may have been the cause (to remove air pockets, the recipe suggests you smooth out the top circle, not move it, and press to seal only after it’s in place).

    Another explanation comes to mind: what size eggs did you use in your crème d’amande? The eggs used in French baking are equivalent to the US size “large” (I’ve updated the recipe to reflect that — it’s rare that it matters significantly, so I don’t usually indicate the size). If you were to use larger eggs (extra large or jumbo), the crème d’amande might be too liquid and therefore more likely to leak.

    Finally, regarding the baking vessel, thanks for the suggestion: I’ve updated the recipe to call for a rimmed baking sheet.

  • Susan

    Hi Clotilde, mea culpa — I know that you didn’t suggest resettling the top! And you are spot on: I did indeed use “extra large” eggs! Thanks for the insights!

  • Hi Clotilde,
    This was a delightful post. I esp. loved the part about transporting the galette via scooter! These things do happen don’t they?

    I thought you might be interested to know that the Galette de Rois is served throughout Louisiana during the Carnival season. The favor there is a plastic baby (I believe it used to be porcelain decades ago but times being what they are…) Anyway, if you live away and order a said “kingcake” through the mail, the said “baby” comes seperately for your own insertion. That’s their way around the lawsuit concerns.

    Thanks for your wonderful blog.

  • Okay, my husband asked me to make a Danish/Swedish Kringle for Christmas. It was VERY boring and unattractive. He ate it all b/c my daughter and me didn’t want any. Because of that, I didnt’ get to really make anything fun this Christmas or New Years so I’m going to attempt to make this galette. Wish me well!

  • Stephanie

    Thank you so much! I’ve been reading lots of recipes for this across the internet, and there’s so much variation, but really no explanation for the different ingredients. You made it simple – frangipane vs. creme d’amande! I live in a pretty small American town, so I’m going to try to find everything and make one. I’m so excited now.

  • Lon

    A similar tradition pertains in Mexico, where I lived for some years as well as all Spanish-speaking countries. The roscón de reyes in Spain or rosca de reyes in Spanish America is traditionally eaten on January 6, during the celebration of the Día de Reyes (literally “King’s Day”). In most of Spain, Mexico and sometimes Hispanic communities in the United States, this is the day when children get presents from the Three Wise Men (not from Santa Claus). In Mexico children leave a shoe outside, filled with hay or dried grass for the animals the Kings ride, before they go to bed along with a note. The Mexican “rosca de reyes” has an oval shape. For decoration, Spanish people use dried and candied fruits like figs, quinces or cherries.
    The tradition of placing a bean, candy or figurine doll of the Christ Child inside the cake is followed. Whoever finds it must take it to the nearest church on February 2, Candlemas Day (Día de la Candelaria), which celebrates the presentation of Jesus in the Temple. According to the Jewish tradition, an infant was to be presented to God in the Temple forty days after his birth. The use of candles on Candlemas represents the light of Christ presented to the world. Nowadays in Mexico, people who find the figurines in their piece of the cake usually agree to make a party on February 2, and to provide the guests with tamales and atole.

    • Fascinating, Lon, thanks so much for sharing!

  • Britt

    I made this for a baking practicle once while at chef school. It was amazing, and so very rewarding after all the work!! I love making puff pastry from scratch!!

  • veronique

    I am making 4 galettes des rois this evening,two for my daugter’s French class and two for a party tomorrow evening. I am french and have been living inAmerica for 16 years. It is tradition for me to make a cake every year to share in my children’s classroom; so i will make two more on sunday night for my two younger children. I usually buy the Pepperidge Farm pastry puff sheets( 2 per packs, about $4.50 a pack). The fold can cause some problem if the sheets are not completed thoroughly and i ground the almond in my coffe grinder(you have to clean it throurougly before and after); the result is great. As for the feve, I had a family member send some. If not I used large animal 3D bouton that I insert after cooking like my mom used to do.

    • Wow, six galettes, that’s quite a feat. Happy baking!

    • Marla

      Hi Veronique, I have to make 5 galette’s for an Epiphany party at our church. Your comment helps and is encouraging! I can’t seem to find a porcelain trinket in Minnesota so I’m using small hard plastic lions (to represent Christ) and inserting them after the pieces are sliced and while the many kids are hiding under the table. Should be fun. Wish me well!

  • sebastien

    Hello Clotilde,
    I just made this galette for my family yesterday – it was very, very good, thank you! I will definitely be trying some of your other recipes now that I’ve found your blog =).

    I did notice something however, that might explain the liquidy fillings above. We bought the almond flour in bulk and so were lucky to get 110g as stated. However, this looked to be much more than the half cup + tbsp in the recipe – it might have been one and a half cups even (although I unfortunately didn’t measure it out). So perhaps the flour could have different densities depending on the source? Anyways, it’s a thought…

    Thanks again!

    • Hello Sebastian, thanks for reporting back on this recipe, I’m glad you and your family enjoyed the galette! And thanks for sharing the comment about the almond flour — I do recommend going by the weight measurement wherever possible.

  • Hello Clotilde, I posted a comment previously that I intended to make this and I am very excited because today I found almond meal but also hazelnut flour right up the street from me at a natural food store! I did find a puff pastry at that same store that had nothing but flour, butter and a little lemon juice I think but it was $11.00. I tried another fancier store and all I could find was the Pepperidge Farm one like Veronique, but to be honest, I didn’t want to use it – it has a ton of extra “stuff” in the ingredients. I might just make my own. I made a Beef and Guinness pie a few months ago that is served in individual crocks inside a homemade puff pastry and that came out wonderfully. I think I’ll do that. Thanks for this recipe! (I wish the videos were in English, but it’s fine. Your instructions are very clear.)

  • Jennifer T

    Really exceptional! I’d never had a gallette des rois, even after ten years with my Frenchman! We were all crazy about this recipe and I can’t wait for next January (I did the crème d’amande). In the US, I recommend searching out Trader Joe’s puff pastry. It comes in two flat, square sheets just the size you need. I used the tart pan to cut out the circle so I’d have that nicely shaped edge, and then I baked it on a rimmed baking sheet as you suggest. The children simply pulled back the top crust of their piece to look for the fève, which seemed to the adults to take the suspense out of it!

  • Ketmala Phoumalavong

    My “galette des rois” is cooking in the oven right now. I made my own puff pastry because I do not care for the “extra” ingredients in the one offered at the store. Thanks for your tips and pics, we cannot wait to taste it tonight since it’s Epiphanie today! The children are super excited and I am happy to keep the tradition going even though we are living in the US now. Merci encore. :-)

    • I hope it turns out to your liking, and that you manage to discreetly give the fève to your kids!

      • Ketmala Phoumalavong

        It was DELICIOUS! Of course, I put two fèves in order to avoid any tears from both kids (5 & 3 year old). Ethan got his fève & crown without our help this year! :-) Thank you again for your recipe. I’ll be trying your multigrain baguette this week.

  • i know i’m a few days late, but i look forward to trying this out. what a wonderful way to close out the christmas season.

  • I baked my first Galette des Rois today (the first one I’ve ever tasted!) and found your tutorial afterwards. Although my galette turned out well, I will be using your tips and techniques for the next one. I can find an all-butter puff pastry by duFour here in the US; it’s expensive but works well. Also Trader Joe’s carries a butter puff pastry that is available in the holidays for much less cost.

    • Good to know, thanks for the recommendations!

  • We made this for our annual Three King’s celebration. I followed your directions. It was great! I did use the hint to measure the almond meal and it was definitely more than the cup measurements. I think this is probably really important in making it thick enough. I also used the ground hazelnuts as I could not find hazelnut flour. I used pre-made puff pastry from Trader Joe’s and I used Triple Sec for the liquor (I had it in the house.) Thanks for this recipe. Mine didn’t look quite as pretty as yours but it tasted delicious. I will make it again.

    • Thanks for reporting back, Withane!

  • Ashley

    I made this earlier in the month but froze it until yesterday. It was so fun to make! I used a whole almond as it bigger than the beans I have on hand. I made a big mistake though, which is my fault, not he fault of the directions! When I put the hot sugar water on I let it drip down the sides which made the puff deflate!!! Oh no! It was still yummy and great fun to bake! I’ll just be more careful next year!

  • Julie

    I live in New Orleans and used your recipe today. I bought a galette de rois from a local bakery as well and this won out by far with everyone! I definitely think it’s the creme d’amande vs frangipane. So yummy!!!

    • Delighted to hear it, Julie, thanks for reporting back!

  • mino

    yes all is well but where o find a feves or two in USA?

    • I don’t know an official source for them, but you can try your luck on eBay, or search for Mardi Gras babies — not exactly the same, but close!

  • Jenny

    This was the first time I’d come across your site. I found it whilst looking for a Galette des Rois recipe. I made it last night/ this morning and it worked beautifully. I used chopped roasted hazelnuts instead of the flour as I like there to be a bit of crunch to the filling, and as my husband has a but allergy I need to make the most of every opportunity to eat nuts. It was such an easy thing to make but looked great. Thank you. Now I know what consistency I’m aiming for in the filling I’m going to try one using chestnut flour/ chestnut purée so that my husband can eat it too. If anyone else has tried that I’d love to know how it went.

    • Wonderful to hear, Jenny, and the chestnut variation sounds lovely. Do let us know how it turns out if you try it!

  • Nicole

    Hey Clotilde! This looks amazing, and I will definitely be making my own galette des rois this month! However, my friend has told me that he prefers to eat galette seche. Can I modify this recipe to make a galette seche? Do I just leave out the frangipane layer? (Although it bewilders me why anyone wouldn’t want frangipane!) Thanks for your help!

    • I’ve never had a galette sèche myself, but I understand it’s just what you suggest. (And I also can’t understand not wanting the crème d’amande if it’s done well and with good ingredients, but to each his own. :)

  • Alex

    I made the recipe and it came out pretty good. A French friend who tasted it said “it is exactly as it should be”. Reading the comments, I have 3 pcs. of advice:
    – if you use a rimmed baking sheet, as I did, take the opened (extended) rim to cut the first circle. For the second one do not bother to cut it before assembling, just make sure the sheet is larger than the first one on all sides; cover the filling as instructed then use again the rim to center (the first circle is visible through the second) and cut the excess dough. This way you get the perfect shape every time.
    – to make the sun pattern (couldn’t access the video) use a piece of string and hold it in one hand (say the right)together with the knife in the middle of the dough and in the other (left) at the rim of the dough. Start with the left hand at one point on the circumference and with the right begin from the middle of the dough and score as instructed. Move your left hand with a step of your choice (say 1 inch) and repeat. Continue until you covered the full circle. You’ll have a perfect pattern in no time. If this is not challenging enough and you remember how you did flowers with the compass in school try your hand here. If not, less complex patterns like crisscrossing lines are also spectacular enough.
    – if you like a stronger liquor flavor (e.g. rum) add more but also adjust the amount of starch so that the filling is not too runny. A little cooking experience is required

    • Thanks so much for your feedback and additional tips, Alex!

  • Hi Clotilde,

    Thanks for the great post for Galette des Rois, the pictures were really helpful. I didn’t grow up eating it, but have decided to make it a tradition now! Like some of the others who have commented, i also used Dufour ready-made puff pastry, and it does tend shrink. I think the shrinking is down to rest time for the pastry, and next time, I would roll the pastry to the required thickness, and then leave it in the fridge (covered) for 15-20 minutes to rest, and then cut out the circles. Thanks again,

  • christine

    Excellent post. Sugggest you try Chocolate Pithiviers from Gammon and Spinach by Simon Hopkinson which is filled with crème pattisiere combined with chocolate frangipane – delicious!

    • Thanks for the recommendation Christine, it sounds great!

  • I made this yesterday and was thrilled how it turned out :) Thanks for such an easy recipe and step by step pictures!

    • I’m so pleased Mardi, and I’ll take the liberty to link to the post you wrote since you were too modest to do it yourself. :) I’m sure others will love to admire your galette!

  • Claudia Berry

    This looks amazing!!!

    • Thanks Claudia, it kind of is! :) I hope you get a chance to try it sometime.

  • Carol Gillott

    Wonderful demonstration. Thank you!

    • You’re very welcome — I’m sure you’ve tasted your share of excellent galettes, but one you’ve made your own has a special flavor!

  • Madonna Ganier-Yancey

    I keep returning to this blog and thinking about Galette des Rois. My birthday is Thursday, and this is what I want for my birthday cake. Since no local bakeries make this sort of treat, I’m going to bake my own cake. I have a “pink baby” from a previous year’s Mardi Gras king’s cake, so that part’s taken care of. Wish me luck.

    • That sounds like a wonderful birthday celebration, Madonna. Hopefully you’ll get the fève, or at least your friends will manage to slip it into your slice, as you deserve on your special day!

  • When I lived in France, we would always buy a Galette des Rois, but now I’m in London I would love to make one myself. Your recipe looks fantastic! I can’t wait to try it. xxx

  • Andreas

    Looks delicious, Clothilde! I’ll be making one tomorrow, will have to compare my recipe to yours :)!

    • Please report back!

      • Andreas

        Et voila! I used pure butter ready rolled puff pastry from a well known discounter (starts with L and ends with L), and followed my recipe, which is similar to yours, but uses a little less sugar and one egg plus one egg yolk. I also put a couple of tablespoons of apricot jam on the base before the almond cream. I didn’t freeze or chill it (no time) and baked it at a temperature a little higher than yours (200 degree). It rose and rose, and it stayed up!! No deflating at all… Looked pretty specatcular, especially when I compared it to the flat galettes I saw at the bakery stall the following day… And it tasted very nice too!!


  • Margaret Phoenix

    I made a galette last night and will bake it off this afternoon just before leaving for my fête. (Scheduling nightmare that I hadn’t planned on!) So fingers crossed! I used David Leibowitz’s recipe which is very much like yours. Hoping for a good result. Bonne année !

    • I hope your galette was a resounding success Margaret! Will you report back? Who got the fève ?

      • Margaret Phoenix

        It was a great success! But believe it or not, I got the fève in MY piece! Queen for a day!!

  • Lincoln Betteridge

    Looks delicious so I will certainly be giving it a try. I have my own almond trees so I am always looking for uses for the almonds!

    Interestingly there is also a sweet, the Roscón, that is eaten on the 6th where I live, here in Spain. it is very different, it is a bread based ring filled with cream or custard. It also typically has a small toy, bean or coin hidden in the cake. The bad news is that the finder is supposed to pay for the cake!

    Thanks for sharing, both the recipe and a taste of French food and culture.

    Lincoln @ LincsFlavours

    • Oh my. Adopt me please?

      • Lincoln Betteridge

        Sorry, full up!

        But anyway….. France is a great place to live. I used to work in Paris, en La Défense, and enjoyed the city very much. Even now I often cross the Pyrenees, from my norther Spanish house, to taste your French cuisine!

    • Jolie Hebert

      In Louisiana, for The Mardi Gras King Cake it is similar to that. The person who finds the baby is supposed to buy the next cake!

  • Karl Michalak

    I made this galette on Friday and now I’m making a second one for this Sunday evening. Your recipes are wonderful, Clotilde. The beautiful photographs really helped me finish the galette so that it looked almost identical to yours! Merci!

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