Monday, January 05, 2009

La Galette des Rois

La Galette des Rois ,watercolor on Etsy,5.5" x 7.5
Just when you thought the plethora of excessive eating was over.
La Galette des Rois ,watercolor on Etsy, 5.5" x 7.5
Along come the King Cake or La Galette des Rois for Epiphany
Somehow the paper crown always looks a bit askew to me. The general idea is that since the Middle Ages, Epiphany is celebrated on the 12th night after Christmas (January 6th) with a special 12th night cake- this is when the three kings finally show up bearing gifts. So the cake hides a "gift" too, or a favor or feves. It used to be a bean, symbolizing fertility, but things have moved on and now we have porcelaine charms. A PB reader wrote me and asked if I knew where she could get some Epifany charms. The only place I know is via AirFrance's ticket office. Unless you live in Japan. Of course Pierre Herme does a magnificent Galette des Rois, though I've never tasted any of these.
His much coveted charm this year is a little heart.
The idea is some lucky eater at the table gets the little charm in their slice of galette. Then they get to wear the paper crown for the evening, so you really can't taste King Cake alone.
Gerard Mulot has this splendid gateaux on offer...
Patisseriere Sadaharu Aoki takes a different twist on the traditional shape of the French gateaux, making his squarish and filled with green tea paste not the usual almond flavor.
You can vicariously see them all here, unless you live in Paris.... BONNE EPIPHANIE!


  1. Anonymous8:12 AM

    Beautiful as Usual !!!

    Lady Gwedolyne

  2. Those charms are very cute.

  3. Anonymous10:20 AM

    Really beautifull your paintings, I like it ! Very funny too !
    Here we've got snow and I'm frozen but I must go out your images are cheery myself !


  4. Anonymous10:31 AM

    We used to always hide an almond inside. These are such delicate, lovely watercolors, Carol--beautiful!

  5. Bonne Epiphanie!...and the season begins...beautiful galettes and watercolors. Happy New Year!

  6. Miam miam la galette des Rois! We started eating it yesterday! So delicious even if I'm not in Paris.

  7. Anonymous9:08 PM

    Naturally, I'd heard of King Cakes in New Orleans for Mardi Gras- but the little pink plastic babies always turned me off. The Frenh, as is so often true, do the King cake MUCH better! But forget the green tea paste - I am a traditionalist when it suits me - and almond is my Favorite filling!!!
    So, for your service in educating and your beautiful photos, I hereby award you the crown!

  8. Anonymous9:47 AM

    i love this! i just made galette des rois yesterday too!

  9. Anonymous9:50 AM

    Des gros macarons alors !

    lili de Bretagne

  10. Anonymous11:47 AM

    Back from Monaco. Bought a darling bag at Laduree to use while on the subway to/from work. Has les macs all over it!
    I had King Cake in Monaco, but did you know they always serve it in New Orleans at this time of year? The influence of the French stretches far and wide.

    Happy 2009!
    Margaret in Atlanta

  11. i know that Payard here in new york on lexington avenue, has advertised their King Cakes every year in the windows of Bernardaud... i keep wanting to make one, and since our Little Christmas dinner isn't until Jan. 11th this year (the pressures of working for a living), i may actually try and make one on saturday. i'll let you know how it turns out.


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