Episode 10: Galette des Rois – Almondy, buttery deliciousness

Galette des rois just after baking

In this episode Kate was talking about a sweet pastry eaten around epiphany in northern France called galette des rois. It is a sweetened almond filling enclosed in puff pastry. She found it surprisingly straightforward to make puff pastry and the pie was delicious!

Galette des rois served with whipped cream and squished raspberries
Galette des rois leftovers: the pie was eaten the next day at room temperature with cold cream and very much enjoyed!

To make the pastry (up to 3 days before!):

Ingredients:

  • 250g butter
  • 250g flour (either all plain/AP or a mix of plain and bread flour)
  • 125g chilled/ iced water,
  • a pinch of salt if using unsalted butter
  • a little extra flour for rolling.

Equipment: a rolling pin, greaseproof/ baking paper, clingwrap/clingfilm

Method:

1. Measure out 167g butter (2/3 of the total butter). Place between two sheets of greaseproof paper and roll out with a rolling pin to a rectangle about 1/2 cm or 1/4 inch thick. Use the warmth of your hands to make the butter more pliable as necessary. Chill.

2. Measure out 250g flour (I used half bread flour and half plain flour). To this, add 83g cold cubed butter (1/3 of the total butter) and rub in. Add the 125g chilled water, leaving a little back or adding a little more depending on the consistency of the dough. It needs to be just enough to bring it all together into a ball with your hands, but no more. Wrap then refrigerate this ball of dough for 1 hour or thereabouts, so the pastry is cold but pliable.

3. You need your pastry and butter to both be cold but pliable. If it’s been a bit too long for one or both of them, leave them out of the fridge for a few minutes before using. But they still need to be cold!!!

4. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface (use no more flour than is absolutely necessary) until more than twice the size of the butter. Fold over the butter and press the edges together to make a parcel. You may want to fold these under and press again to make sure it’s a nicely sealed little package. Chill for 15 minutes.

5. Remove the pastry out of the fridge and do a “book fold”: fold two sides in and then these over each other. Chill for 15 minutes.

6. Taking care to remember where the last layers were, roll the pastry out again and do a thirds fold in the opposite (ie. at a right angle) direction to your last fold. This is simply folding one third in then another third on top of that. Chill for 15 minutes.

7. Repeat the last two steps: so another roll, book fold and chill, then another roll, third fold and chill, making sure you change direction in your folds each time. Refrigerate until ready to use for up to three days.

To make the almond filling:

Ingredients:

  • 100g butter
  • 100g ground almonds
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract (reduce or leave out for a less almondy flavour)
  • 2 UK medium/ US large eggs (ie 100g eggs)
  • 100g caster/superfine sugar
  • Optional: 1-2 tsp cornflour for a less gooey filling.

Equipment: wooden spoon, whisk or paddle attachment, for beating; bowl

Method: Beat the butter and sugar together (this is to help the sugar to dissolve rather than to whip in air). Add the other ingredients to simply combine. Chill until needed.

To assemble:

Ingredients: 1 500g block of puff pastry, 1 egg yolk and 1 tsp milk for the egg wash, 1 almond filling bowl. A small amount of flour for rolling. A dried bean/ whole almond so you can crown the king/ queen

Equipment: Rolling pin, baking sheet or metal pie tin, pastry brush and small cup, offset spatula (or use the back of a spoon), fork or something else for crimping, knife, cake base or circular thing to use as a guide when cutting out pastry, paring knife

Method:

1. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to about 1/4 inch or 1/2 cm thickness. Cut out two large circles, perhaps using a cake base as a guide, one needs to be a bit larger than the other. Use the smaller circle as the base, then spread over the almond filling, leaving about 1.5cm or 1 inch around the sides. Hide a bean/almond in the filling to follow tradition! Use a wet finger to seal the other circle of pastry on top. Crimp with a fork or using your preferred method! Lightly score the pastry with a paring knife, if wanted. Make a few very small holes with the end of the knife to allow air to escape during baking. Chill the pie well before baking! (Note: Don’t throw pastry offcuts away! You could make them into cheese twists or jam turnovers.)

2. Preheat the oven to 200 C / 180 fan / 390F / gas 6 or thereabouts, depending on your oven. Remember – you need cold pastry going into a hot oven to get layers and prevent butter from leaking!

3. Brush egg yolk thinned with a tiny bit of milk over the top of the pie so it gets lovely and golden in the oven. Bake for about 30 minutes until golden and puffy. Leave for a few minutes before attempting to cut up. This pie is also lovely eaten at room temperature.

Useful Links!

Kate Moore’s simple puff pastry recipe, via the Tesco Real Food YouTube channel… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dcqk74DP-sw

Erin McDowell’s extremely helpful video about puff pastry, part of the series Bake It Up a Notch on the Food 52 YouTube channel. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvEQyPj968A&t=1s

David Lebovitz’s galette des rois recipe and helpful tips: https://www.davidlebovitz.com/galette-des-rois-kings-cake-recipe/

Published by Kate

Home baker and now podcaster!

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