In France, as I suppose everywhere else in the North, January is a quiet month. Many businesses are closed  up to take their annual congé, now that they have quiet days. The days are long and grey and cold. A highlight of January is la galette des rois(cake of the kings). Epiphany.  On the twelfth day. 6 January.  Although we start eating la galette already on 1 January and the boulangeries are happy to provide les galettes right through the month of January.

…a home baked galette des rois…

A recipe from the book Pâtisseries maison, by Florence Edelmann.

Traditionally a galette was shared around the table, with the youngest  sitting under the table calling the name of each recipient of a slice. That would make the game fair in hoping for the féve(fava bean, but nowadays a trinket). The person finding the féve in his slice, would be king, wear the paper crown and provide the next galette on the table.

The boulangeries bake extraordinary galettes, much better than I could do. So I am happy to buy my galette at the corner up in Montlouis at Aux pains gourmands. The traditoinal galette  was a filling of crème d’amande, which is a mixture of ground almonds , sugar, butter and egg. Modern day finds the galette with a variety of fillings, from frangipane(sort of crème pâtissière with creamed butter and sugar and added almonds, flour and eggs), raspberry to apple to chocolate and more.


  • Work with cold pastry to have it rise high and flaky.
  • Be careful not to cover with egg on the sides or else the pastry won’t flake.
  • Add a traditinal fava bean instead of a trinket for a real traditional touch.
  • Warm in the oven and not the microwave, to get the pastry crispy.
  • Leave the galette in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to have it very cold, before putting in the oven.

♪..J’aime la galette

Savez vous comment

Quand elle est bien faite

avec du beurre dedans…

tra la la la la la la la lére…♪

Along with the galette des rois come the thoughts and reflections of what to do with this new year. Personal goals and dreams. As for myself, I always feel a bit lost in early January.

With December and family gone and the days cold and grey, I fiddle around, searching for the start-off to take on my goals . It takes me a while to really get going and start moving in a definite direction. But I know time will push me out of the starting blocks soon…hopefully…

So in the meantime, while trusting in patient old Mr. Time, let’s put on our boots and stroll the garden(and the Loire)to find some January greenery for the house. A dried branch. A twig. A branch of bayleaf .

Maybe some rearranging of paintings and prints…moving those upstairs, down and others upstairs. A change is good for inspiration.

The bookshelves can do with some organising too and don’t forget the cleaning closet. I pride myself on a neat and organized cleaning cupboard, but after a houseful of people, even the most tidiest corner can be turned upside down.

Let’s not forget the rearranging and sorting of clothes, linen and adding fresh sachets to the linen cupboards, cleaning out read and unused magazines, freshen up the pantry, oil the wooden cutboards, remove containers with left overs from the fridge and stock  with fresh vegetables , clean out your desk, find a place for all those Christmas cards, reflect on the finances, put a lock on your purse….in short, a lot can be done whilst waiting for inspiration or rather, for Time  to push you off the starting blocks.

Les trucs et astuce de nos grands- méres:

A branch of parsley added to deep frying oil, will soften the heavy smell of fried food.

20 thoughts on “La galette des rois and a slow start.

  1. To say the truth this blog is inspiration itself 🙂 See, I bet that some of the readers ran to clean up, organize, etc., as I’m intending to do.
    Happy Holidays!


  2. Somewhat I feel the same about January, and oh my, I completly lost my feeling for time, and missed to bake something for today. Actually, I wanted to bake the same like you did, but now it is too late. It looks wonderful and how flaky!


  3. Bonjour! Une belle galette..! Et de jolies couronnes aussi~

    Guess what I did last night?

    I watched Vatel!We had it..on a VHS..and I watched was totally different for me this time around some almost 10 yrs later:)

    LOVED the scenes of ..preparation etc..And I love Gérard Dépardieu~ I had myself a lovely evening~

    Your clock and art could have been in the movie~

    I organized a few closets and made 3 bags for une Société ..I will drop them off soon.They are all tied and ready to go~

    I always wonder about a New Year also….L’incertain..what’s done is known..what is to come is not~


  4. Beautiful galette!

    I, too, am finding myself starting the new year off a little slow, wondering what it will take to push me towards those goals I set for myself last week! ;0

    I did get around to my annual reorganizing and decluttering, however, so that feels good and I hope I made some less fortunate happy with my discards!

    Onward and upward we go…


  5. There is something about getting organized in the New Year…all over the world.

    Now, if you just would not make us drool over your posts of the finest food around!


  6. A wonderful blog!!!If I ever get a chance to nominate this site for a prize…..I will! Ronell, I need a day or more to go through all the interesting info and pics! Regards from Cape Town.


  7. Ronell, you are definitely an inspiration! I know I’ve said this before, but I just adore your blog. It makes me yearn for the years I spent in New Mexico, where we actually DID get winter. The good part about winter is that you have a chance to slow down, to catch up, to organize and reflect. And of course, savor the treats of winter!


  8. On my side I always feel depressed and lonely on the month of january, I guess it must be all those great emotions accumulated on the month of december….well this gallete de rois looks tempting. i wanted to make one but i run out of ingredients…happy new year to you and your family!!


  9. Hi Ronell,Well on the other side of the globe in Oz. we are all just trying to keep cool.
    But likewise we are using leftovers from Christmas[at this stage mostly shortbread,& fruitcake.]
    Many are on holiday,it is lovely to see families by the sea all swimming and enjoying the great outdoors.
    But yesterday some of my group of crafty ladies came, so we chatted over a cuppa. Pam & I are trying watercolours out, just love the way they flow.Maybe I will never be Monet but it is about just letting go & having fun.
    We are making fish too with comic faces & painting them. They are made out of material,you paint the faces & sculpt them with a sewing needle & cotton. Another challenge!
    itend to Spring Clean.I go mad after winter, but there is still the Christmas tree to pull down.
    Yes January is a resting time, but perhaps sit with a notebook & try to roughly plan out the year’s challenges. It won’t work out to scale but it is beginnings. Thank you for you lovely inspirational blog. It is filled with joy & I feel we share your table of gorgeous delicacies. May your year but filled with quiet joy and love.
    Best Wishes,Rosemary


  10. Greeting friend, I am always drawn into your blog, wanting to curl up and take it all in like any good book. It is so thoughtful. I am also at a weird place, and can’t put my finger on it. I have to paint, because of deadlines and obligations but I am not feeling very energetic. Trying to work through it, after seeing all this yummy food I am getting a sugar rush for sure. I do have some rooms that need organizing, although I like to bite off small areas to tackle over the year. Hope your days brighten up and your year is filled with Joy and creating masterpieces.


  11. I stumpled upon this blog looking for a good galette des rois recipe.. I’m glad I did 🙂 Bonne année!


  12. How are you my friend!!! May your year be filled with many beautiful moments and blessings beyond measure!!!

    Thanks for the inspiration to get of my lazy holiday bum and start packing and cleaning!!!

    Love the parsley trick….I don’t like the smell of fried food at all!!!!


  13. ronell, i stumbled upon your frenchkitchen some time early last year – i’m not an avid commenter – but i enjoy the life you continue to share (I would like to hear your story:-) … i have to try the above recipe… january in johannesburg…


  14. Thank you for all the lovely and supportive comments, I appeciate each and every one!

    Thanks sophie!

    Thank you Sonskyn…and unfortunately my story isn’t that exciting, but I might tell it some day.

    Jeanne….pop on over and come get a calender!

    Nina, you are allowed to be lazy, I understand that the Cape has VERY hot days!

    Florence, I hopoethe galette worked out for you?

    Thanks Desiree…it is always a delight seeing you here on my foodblog!

    Rosemary, you’ve inspired me too with your stories of sun living and fun times spent with your friends…I think it is wonderful!

    Hilda.join the club of January downs and slowness…but pretty soon it will pick up for us!

    Toni, you’re right, winter come3s only once a year, we should savour every minute of it…and of course, that makes summer even more fun!

    Thank you Marie..coming from you, it is such a compliment!

    Lori, I think you are very organized…there is always so much going on at your place…so much life…I love it!

    Dana, you and I know alot about going up and onward…we will just have to, non? Fortunately we are able to…with all the support we have…

    Monique, so glad you enjoyed Vatel…I am now searching for Like water for chocolate.

    Chriesie…it is never too late for anyhting…knock yourself out…have a ball!

    Well, as long as it is ?January, we can enjoy la galette, right!

    Nadezda…I finalyl got around to do some cleaning and organizing too…couldn’t have you speking of inspiration and then I did nothing…he he!!



  15. Ronell,
    I just discovered your blog through Down to Earth, another blog I follow. I will be following yours now too. I love your recipes with the little paintings, and your recipes look wonderful, but the one thing I started this year was another resolution to lose that weight so I will just view those tasty morsels from afar. Have been busy cleaning out cupboards myself and doing a big tidy up – it feels so good. Wish I could keep up that enthusiasm all year!


  16. I just had a galette des rois that my friend prepared the other day. She had a whole almond hidden inside, and out of the 8 slices she cut, I had the one with the almond, which means I’ll have to make it next year. I will come back for the recipe next January.




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