Recipe for Gateau Blanc for La Fête des Rois

Therese Siemers sent us this recipe from Alberta, Canada…

Gâteau Blanc is baked for “La fête des rois”,  The Feast of the Magi or 3 Kings on January 6th in Alberta, Canada.

The French Canadian tradition is to bake a pea and a bean in the cake. But, we substituted a nickel and a dime wrapped in wax paper when I was a child. Whoever got the bean was king and whoever got the pea was queen for the day. Others had to do the bidding of king – or queen. Anyone could be king or queen.

Here’s a recipe to make a Gateau blanc…

Gâteau Blanc
(White Cake)


1/2 cup butter
2 cups cake flour
1/4 tsp salt
4 egg whites
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup sugar


1. Whip the egg whites until they form firm peaks, add 1/2 the white sugar (1/2 cup). Set aside.

2. Blend the butter and the rest of the sugar (1/2 cup). Set aside.

3. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add dry ingredients to butter & sugar mix, alternately with the milk. Mix well.

4. Fold in the whipped egg whites.

5. Bake in prepared round cake pan. Best to use a pan that the bottom comes out. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper for easier removal.

Bake 40-45 minutes at moderate temperature, 350 F. (Note, if using convection oven that doesn’t correct for temperature automatically, bake at 325 F.)

Cool until lukewarm, then turn cake upside down to finish cooling. If you don’t use parchment paper, use a thin knife blade to separate the cake pan bottom from the cake.

We didn’t ice the cake. But you can prepare a light glaze with water and icing sugar and brush on when the cake is still warm.

This is common French Canadian recipe. Every French Canadian has this recipe or a close variation of this. It is a must have.

Therese Siemers
St Paul, Alberta, Canada

Many thanks to Therese for sharing this recipe!

-Mama Lisa

Read more about the French Canadian Tradition: La fête des rois.

This article was posted on Tuesday, January 5th, 2021 at 5:03 pm and is filed under Canada, Countries & Cultures, Desserts, Holiday Recipes, Holidays Around the World, Kings Day, Kings Day Recipes, La fête des rois or Kings Day, Mama Lisa, Recipes of the World. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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