King Cake

King Cake

Galette des Rois

When I was a child living in France, people ate king cakes for Twelfth Night - the twelfth night after Christmas. According to the story, that's when the Three Wise Men, the Magi, finally got to Bethlehem after travelling from the East with their presents of frankincense and myrrh. People eat this cake in their honor. Hidden inside each king cake is a bean, and whoever gets the bean in their slice is the king for the day, and wears a paper crown.

So is this cake good for you?

This is so totally not good for you! It's all butter and sugar, practically.

How to make King cake:

Preheat the oven to 425 F. Take out a package of puff pastry to defrost while you cook. In a medium-size mixing bowl, melt a stick of butter. In a food processor, puree 3/4 cup of slivered almonds, and add them to the butter. Also add 3/4 cup of sugar and three eggs.

On a baking sheet, gently unfold one sheet of puff pastry. Break off pieces from the edges to make it a rough circle, and lay those pieces along the edges of the circle. Spread the circle with your almond filling - don't forget to put in your bean! - and lay another piece of puff pastry on top of the filling. Fold down the corners to make a circle, and pinch the top and bottom together so the filling is sealed inside. Break an egg into a cup and use a pastry brush to brush egg all over the top of the cake, but not on the sides which might stop it from puffing well.

Bake for about half an hour; let stand at least ten minutes after baking before serving. Meanwhile, encourage somone in your house to make a paper crown for the person to wear who finds the bean.

Vegetarian or vegan

Just naturally vegetarian! Enjoy! If you want a good vegan cake, use this recipe instead.

Can I keep this for later?

Sure. This cake will be good for a day after you make it. But it will get stale if you keep it longer than that.