French Epiphany Spice: Galette des Rois (including a KETO/PALEO alternative)

recipe Jan 10, 2022

French tradition on the Sunday after Epiphany (celebrating the three wise men, called « Kings » in our culture, who came to worship Jesus): the King’s almond pie, with a hidden jewel inside (usually a small clay figure). Spices? Vanilla and orange blossom! Yum!
This is a family tradition my children have voted a favorite family memory; we have celebrated every year this quintessentially French tradition—whether we lived in France, Africa, UK or US!!

In the French tradition, the youngest child present will hide under the table to assign pie slices to each person present. The hostess will cut a slice, hold it on a plate and ask the child, "who is this slice for?" - the child will name each person present in turn, and so on until everyone is served. This will ensure that no one can know in advance who gets the hidden jewel!

The "winner" of the jewel is crowned "King" or "Queen" with a paper crown (made ahead of time) and choose his/her Queen or King for the day, giving the chosen one another paper crown. Fun tradition!

I am sharing my own personal recipe below... with a few options for personalization. If you enjoy our GospelSpice resources, become a member for FREE to access 100% of our in-depth Bible content completely free of charge. Bon Appetit!

French King's Galette:

Ingredients (for 1 galette, 8 servings)

Dough:

- 2 puff pastry sheets, store-bought and thawed, or homemade (rough puff works well).

- 1 egg yolk (to make the crust golden)

Filling:

- 2 eggs

- 1 cup, blanched almond flour

- 1/2 cup, brown sugar

- 1 tsp vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean (seeds extracted with a knife)

- 2/3 cup, unsalted butter, softened but not melted.

- 1 pinch of salt.

- 1 tsp orange blossom water, or replace with any other spice of choice (see below).

For the hidden jewel: use a CLAY figurine, or anything that will not melt in your filling (glass bead, dried kidney bean, dried chick pea...). NO plastic!!!

(see KETO/PALEO ingredient replacement at the bottom of post).

Recipe:

- preheat oven to 350F.

- mix all the ingredients for the filling.

- place one of the 2 puff pastries flat on your cookie sheet or inside your 9 inch round pan. Spread filling evenly.

- place the hidden jewel inside the filling (not in the middle where the knife will find it!).

- place top puff pastry on top, and wash with the egg yolk for a golden finish.

- optional - design flowers and leaves, or design of your choice, on top of crust with a knife.

- bake for 30 to 40 minutes, checking every 5 minutes after 25 minutes for doneness.

Let cool for 15 minutes before cutting into the pie. Best eaten warm.

Ingredient Replacements:

- replace the puff pastry with phylo dough for a much lighter version (but more crunchy and harder to keep together)

- add 1/2 cup of chocolate chips for a richer filling. 

SPICE REPLACEMENTS FOR YEARLONG FLAVORS: substitute orange blossom water with 1/2 teaspoon of one of the following:

- cinnamon OR pumpkin spice for a fall flavor

- OR a mix of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and orange peel for a Christmas flavor.

- OR lavender and lemon peel (FINELY CRUSHED) for a summer flavor.

- OR cognac for a more festive flavor (most of the alcohol will cook off but there may be a little left in the filling).

KETO/PALEO:

- make your own keto/paleo dough (see recipe below) but it will be a pie crust, not puff pastry.

- replace 1/2 c. brown sugar with 1/2 c. coconut sugar for paleo version; with 1/4c. monkfruit for keto (but taste just isn't the same - you will need more spices to hide the monkfruit aftertaste).

KETO/PALEO pie crust suggestion:

(you will need to double this recipe for a top and bottom crust) - it is not nearly as light as a puff pastry!

Mix together until just blended, then flatten at the bottom of your baking dish. For the top crust, roll out between two sheets of parchment paper, then refrigerate for 30 minutes before placing on top of the filling:

- 1 egg

- 3 cups, almond meal or blanched almond flour (or grind 3 cups of almonds)

- 2 tablespoons, coconut flour

- 3 tablespoons, coconut oil (barely soft) OR palm shortening.

- 4 tablespoons, water (cold)

- 1/2 teaspoon salt

- 1/2 teaspoon, vanilla extract

BON APPETIT!

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