Mardi Gras

Pecan Orange Galette des Rois

February 17, 2022
1 Ratings
  • Prep time 24 hours 50 minutes
  • Cook time 30 minutes
  • makes 1 9-inch cake
Test Kitchen Notes

Want to bake this incredible treat alongside Joy the Baker herself? Check out this episode of Play Me a Recipe, where Joy bakes her way through the recipe. —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • For the puff pastry
  • 3 1/4 cups (413 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (65 grams) whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 12 ounces (399 grams) unsalted cold butter, cubed
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • For the filling
  • 1 1/4 cups (160 grams) cup shelled pecan halves
  • 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup (34 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh grated orange zest
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg white, yolk reserved
  • 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 large egg (to combine with yolk for egg wash)
  1. To make the pastry, in a large bowl whisk together the two flours, salt, and sugar. Add the cold butter all at once to the flour mixture and use your fingers to fluff and combine, coating all the butter.
  2. Use your fingers to break the butter down into the flour. Press the butter chunks between your thumb and index fingers into rough sheets of butter.
  3. Break all of the butter pieces down, creating pea size chunks of butter along with flattened sheets of butter. This usually takes me about 5 to 7 minutes. Work quickly as to not heat the butter with your hands too much.
  4. Make a well in the center of the flour and butter mixture. Stir together cold water and vinegar. Add 3/4 of the liquid to the flour. Mix the flour mixture towards the center, tossing together the wet and dry ingredients. Add more of the water mixture as necessary to create a moist but still fairly dry dough. Dump the dough out onto the counter and start to gently knead together into a thick rectangle. Add more water as necessary and you'll know you have enough liquid when there are no dry patches remaining.
  5. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.
  6. Once the dough is well chilled, remove it from the refrigerator and place on a well-floured counter. Roll the dough into a 1/2-inch thick rectangle roughly 6x16-inches wide and along.
  7. Position the rectangle long way from where you stand extending out long in front of you. Fold the bottom third of the dough up towards the center. Fold the top third of the dough down over the first fold. This is a letter fold we'll repeat.
  8. Rotate the dough a quarter turn clockwise so the ends of the folds are facing towards you and away from you. Roll the dough out long into a 1/2-inch thick rectangle again so that it extends long out in front of you. Fold into the letter fold once again. Rotate and roll and fold once again.
  9. Complete 4 roll and fold laminations. You may need to return the dough to the refrigerator to rechill the butter in the middle of working. Cold butter is best.
  10. After the 4th fold, divide the dough in two. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  11. While the pastry rests, make the pecan filling.
  12. To make the filling, in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment pulse the pecan flour, sugar, flour, salt, and zest to combine. Add the egg and white and pulse to combine. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl.
  13. With the mixer running on low, add the softened butter, a tablespoon at a time. The butter will emulsify as it's added to the nut mixture, thicken and become really luscious. Scrape the filling into a container, cover and store in the refrigerator until it's time to fill the cake.
  14. In a small bowl whisk together reserved egg yolk and egg for egg wash.
  15. Remove the chilled puff pastry from the refrigerator. Very lightly dust the counter with flour and roll puff pastry into a rectangle between roughly 1/4-1/2 inch in thickness. You'll want the dough thicker than 1/4-inch but no thicker than 1/2-inch in thickness.
  16. Next, we'll cut our dough rounds. Place a round 8 or 9-inch cake pan, top side down, over half of the dough leaving enough dough to the side to cut a second round. Use a small pairing knife to trace around the cake pan, cutting a round. Trace and cut a second round on the other half of the dough. Gather the excess dough, wrap and refrigerate.
  17. Place one dough round on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Lightly brush dough with egg wash.
  18. Remove filling from the refrigerator and spread over the egg wash brushed dough. Leave 1-inch border around the edges of the dough.
  19. Top with the second dough round, pressing from the center evenly out towards the edges, pressing out any air bubbles.
  20. Press the edges well to seal the pecan filling into the center of the dough. Use a small dowel or knife to create a single vent hole in the center of the cake, piercing through the top layer of dough into the filling.
  21. Lightly brush the top of the cake with egg wash.
  22. Use a small knife to trace a design across the top of the cake. This will show through the egg wash as it bakes and help the dough grow as it puffs. Use your fingers or the back of a knife to crimp the edges of the dough.
  23. Allow the cake to rest in the refrigerator while the oven preheats. Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Bake for 25-30 minutes until puffed and golden brown.
  24. Allow to cool to room temperature before slicing and enjoying. Store any leftovers wrapped at room temperature for up to 3 days.

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2 Reviews

Smaug March 5, 2022
Made the filling (I used standard puff pastry)- I found it quite nice. The orange flavor is pretty understated- zest doesn't give you the acid bite you get with juice, but it goes well with the pecan for a subtle, mostly aromatic touch.
There are some discrepancies in the written recipe. The ingredients list pecan halves, but the instructions say pecan flour; presumably you're to grind the pecans (no reason you need halves, really); if you have a better way to do this than a food processor you should probably use it, but you're unlikely to get it as fine as "flour" indicates. The filling is assembled in a food processor, but when you get to adding the butter it says "with the mixer running on low..."- maybe you're supposed to transfer it to a mixer, which would work better than the food processor- anyway, I just mixed it in with a silicone spatula. What she means by "the butter will emulsify" is anyone's guess; just mix it in. The big one- she suggests cutting an 8 or 9 inch circle; that's actually a huge difference. A 9" circle is somewhat over 1 1/4 times the size of an 8" circle; when you subtract the inch that's left bare, the actual area you'll put the filling on, it's about 1 2/3 times the size. The thickness of the filling will not only affect the proportions of the final dish, it will have a considerable effect on the baking time and the amount of lift of the bottom layer. I made 1/2 recipe of filling for a cake about 7" square- on the thin side with the filling, but I thought it was quite ample. For a variant, you might put a layer of marmalade under the filling.
Smaug February 28, 2022
I like the idea of pecan orange filling (I've made it with almond/orange before), but doesn't the King deserve real puff pastry? It's not really that hard and always comes out better than these "easy" puff pastry recipes- it's actually kind of fun. I'm starting to believe that the word "emulsify" should be banned from culinary discussions, it gets misused in the weirdest ways. "Mix" is a perfectly good word and is usually what is meant.