Celebrating the Galette des Rois w/ FIAF: A Cake Fit for a King…or Queen

The ball has dropped and the fireworks have long fizzled out, but don’t let the post-holiday blues sink in just yet. We’re still getting into the swing of 2018 and the New Year celebration should continue all throughout January. To keep the party going and to invite more luck and sweetness into our lives, we looked to the French. Specifically, we went to the epitome of French culture and language in New York City, the French Institute Alliance Francaise or FIAF for short. On January 17, we headed to FIAF’s Le Skyroom event space to enjoy some wine, cheese, bread, and cakes with a royal history, Galette des Rois, and Brioche des Rois.

While the Galette des Rois or the “Kings’ cake” is enjoyed in many parts of Europe, Canada, Latin America, and the United States, the focus was on the traditional French Galette des Rois. Dating back to the middle ages, the galette des Rois is served only in the month of January. It celebrates the Epiphany or the visit of the three kings to the Christ child.  It is a puff pastry confection with a frangipane filling. However, different variations exist depending on the region in France. The traditional galette is a light flaky golden brown pastry packed with a dense and palatable almond filling. We were fortunate enough to also taste a Brioche des Rois. The Brioche des Rois is more colorful than its cousin and can be found in the South of France. It’s made with raisins, candied fruits, and orange blossom water topped with pearl sugar and more candied fruits.

The lightness and fluffiness of the bread is balanced with the thick sweetness of the fruits. Best of all, baked into the dense filling and buried within the flaky layers of any galette is a fève or a porcelain charm. Whoever finds the fève inside their piece, gets crowned king or queen for a day. A box of Galette des Rois often comes with gold paper crowns for the lucky guy or gal who gets to rule over the party. Not only that, it’s also said that whoever finds the fève will have good luck for the rest of the year. An important thing to note when serving galettes with fèves in them—be sure to warn your guests to eat slowly and look out for the charms to avoid choking and chipped teeth incidents.

But hurry and get yourself this fun dessert before month’s end! We recommend getting one from Maison Kayser, the bakery who generously supplied the savory spread and the galettes at FIAF. Don’t forget to grab a bottle of wine from Gabriella Fine Wines, who also provided the perfect pairing to our feast. Bon Appétit!

IHOP Premieres French Toasted Donuts for a Limited Time

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. At IHOP, it can also be the most delicious. IHOP continues to break the rules of breakfast with three distinctive dishes hot off the test kitchen griddles. Elevating the breakfast treat that is french toast by combining it with donuts, IHOP is taking breakfast to another level of delicious. The IHOP French Toasted Donuts feature classic donuts dipped in sweet vanilla batter and then French toasted. The new lineup is available in three decadent, mouthwatering flavors ranging from savory to sweet.

“At IHOP, we’re always looking for fresh new ways to excite our guests and bring unexpected flavors together,” said Chef Nevielle Panthaky, Vice President, Culinary at IHOP. “This is a delicious mash-up of the classic donut everyone knows and loves, dipped in a creamy vanilla batter, French toasted to a light golden brown and topped off with flavors such as maple glaze and hickory-smoked bacon. And who better to do it than IHOP, the brand that has owned all-day breakfast for almost six decades?”

Bacon & Maple French Toasted Donut

The Bacon & Maple French Toasted Donut is a Bavarian cream filled donut, dipped in vanilla French toast batter, griddled, then topped with rich maple glaze and savory hickory-smoked bacon crumbles.

Strawberries & Cream French Toasted Donut

The Strawberries & Cream French Toasted Donut is a Bavarian cream filled donut, dipped in vanilla French toast batter, griddled, then topped with strawberries in a juicy glaze and powdered sugar.

Apple Fritter French Toasted Donut

The Apple Fritter French Toasted Donut is a warm apple fritter dipped in vanilla French toast batter, griddled, then topped with sweet cinnamon apples, powdered sugar and whipped topping.

We had the pleasure of getting an exclusive first taste of all three of these decadent breakfast donuts at an event with Chef Nevielle Panthaky, VP of Culinary at IHOP. It was an evening of ultimate decadence as we satisfied our almost insatiable appetite for these sinful breakfast treats. We also had the opportunity to recreate or create our own French Toasted Donut, thanks to the wide variety of available toppings made available to us.

The French Toasted Donuts are available from July 31st through September 24th at participating IHOP restaurants nationwide. The new menu items can be enjoyed on their own or as part of a combo meal with the choice of eggs, bacon, sausage or ham, and more.