Gateau des rois

A reader has asked: Somewhere I read a reference to something called a “gateau des rois.” What is it?

A: A gateau des rois, sometimes also referred to as a galette, is a cake made to celebrate Twelfth Night or January 6 in France. In northern France, the cake is usually made from a disk of puff pastry that may be filled or not. In southern France, it is usually made from a yeast dough. Every cake has a bean (feve in French) or small porcelain figure (also called a feve) baked into it, and the recipient of the feve is the “king” for the evening and buys a round of drinks. Sometimes this type of cake is sold with a golden paper crown for the “king” to wear.