So um this holiday is celebrated around Epiphany which is at the beginning of January usually the 6th of January. What we do in France is that we make this cake which is called well I guess the literal translation would be King Cake and we bake it before, during, and after the 6th of January to celebrate the Epiphany. And my mom usually makes the cake and she usually makes more than one cause we really enjoy eating it. And its also sold like everywhere in France. Like, you see it in bakeries and its really popular. In French its called Galette des Rois. I know its made up of um, I know it has like almond paste in it. And also, the special thing about it is theres this charm in the middle of it and the point of having this cake is um when you are about to cut it, the youngest person thats at the table goes under the table and calls out whos gonna get the piece so that its like a fair way to get the charm. So, for example, like my sister usually goes cause shes the youngest and my mom says Whos this for? and she would say um you or my dad or me or my brother and then that person would get the fair piece and shouldnt know where the charm was cause sometimes you can see it like through the cake so that way like she doesnt know anything and we all get it fairly well, if we do get it. I guess the reward is you get this crown which you can buy them and theyre just made of um, cardboard I guess. And you get to be King for the day and if youre a girl you get to be Queen. Well you also choose your, well if youre a king you can choose your queen and if youre queen you can choose your king for the day. Its just for fun mostly. I mean, its like really widespread cause theyre available everywhere like in bakeries and I mean Im sure most people do it or like, if they dont make em then they buy them in bakeries and its just like I mean, its a Christian holiday but its become more like a tradition than a religious holiday that everyone celebrates. Its usually my mom who prepares the cake. I think its usually whoever knows how to make the cake makes it. She didnt do this when she was growing up cause her family is Swedish-American so they dont have this tradition but on my dads side they did it cause theyre French. And if we go to there place during, um, that time of the year, we usually get it too. And they also have these cakes at schools and stuff so if youre at school its like a really widespread festivity I guess. And at school you get it, like at the office they usually have it for people and then whoever gets it is recognized as king or queen. I dont know where my mom got the recipe cause, I mean, theres tons of different ones. She might have gotten it from my grandma but I mean, I think mostly the recipes similar its just like knowing how to make it more puffy than others cause its hard to do that I guess.
Upon further research, I learned that the King Cake is to honor the Three Wise Men who visited the birth of Jesus, the newborn king of kings in Bethlehem. More information about the Galette des Rois can be found in the essay Les Galettes des Rois: The Eating of Fine Art.
Annotation: Bauman, James. Les Galettes des Rois: The Eating of Fine Art. The Wilder Shores of Gastronomy: Twenty Years of Food Writing. Ten Speed Press: December 2002. Page 207-215.