Galette des rois

This fluffy, deliciously, golden looking cake makes everyone happy. It’s the first tradition of the New Year and we, belgian people, are waiting for it with a huge smile on our face. Yes it’s delicious, but what makes it special is what’s buried inside. A tiny charm. Careful with your teeth because it can make some damages. 

We love this tradition because it gathers family together and we spend a great time with each other. Normally, one adult would cut the cake in secret in the kitchen where no one can see. Then the cake would be brought at the table and one innocent children would go under the table and decide which slides goes to who, without seeing it. Then comes the time to eat and the person who get the tiny charm becomes the king or the queen of the day and may choose his king or queen. 

That’s a cute tradition you’ll say, but it goes way back, and before.. it wasn’t as charming. 

This tradition of picking up kings can be traced back to Antiquity. In those ancient times, during the festivities consecrated to Saturn. Romans were picking up a king between their slaves, during one day this slave would have the luck to live like a master. Luck? Well.. after the day, in the best case he was returning to a state of slave, or he was just put to death. This inversion of roles was made to thwart the evil days of Saturn. 

Nowadays, this tradition is linked to the Christianity, and is celebrate on January 6th (and during the rest of month) to celebrate the arrival of the Three Kings where Jesus was born. But to be completely honest, most of us just enjoy the family and friends moment whatever our religions or beliefs may be.  

Florence Bertulot