For Epiphany I wanted our children's group to make a traditional King Cake- puff pastry with a ground almond filling and a hidden ceramic baby Jesus. See Here for the traditional version.
I realised that a lot of children are a bit picky about almonds and we have to be careful about nut content at church. So- what better than golden syrup as a replacement?! The golden syrup, of course lends itself to the story of the wise men bring gold as one of their gifts.
If you'd like to make a Golden Syrup King Cake, try this recipe out!
320g Puff Pastry sheet (from the chilled section or a frozen one that has been thawed)
200g Golden Syrup
50g white breadcrumbs
Egg or milk to glaze
* You will also need a ceramic baking bean wrapped in foil to represent baby Jesus.
1. Preheat the oven to 170/340/ Gas 4. Open out the pastry sheet and cut off a section at the end for decorations. Cut what is left into rough halves and place on a baking tray (grease the tray beforehand or line with greaseproof paper).
2. Mix the breadcrumbs and Golden Syrup together. Spread on one half of the pastry sheet, leaving wide margins around the sides.
3. Wrap the ceramic bean in foil so it is a good size and unlikely to be swallowed accidentally. Place the foil package 'Jesus' on the mixture.
4. Lay the second half of the pastry sheet on top of the golden syrup sheet. Press the sides together with a fork and decorate with the spare section of pastry you cut off earlier.
Talk about: What decorations should we put on the cake? Why? Does that connect with the story?
Make a hole in the top of the pie for steam to escape. Brush the top of the pastry with a beaten egg or with milk.
5. Bake the king cake for 30 mins at 170/ 340/ Gas 4. It will look a bit darker than this one- I took it out prematurely!
6. Cut into slices and serve- remember to to let people know that one of the pieces will contain the ceramic 'Jesus'! Traditionally, whoever finds Jesus is pronounced 'King' for the rest of the day :-)
Why do you think we often eat sweet things when we celebrate something?
How does it feel to find a prize?
What have you ever searched for?
What do you think the wise men felt when they found Jesus?
Pray that you will come to find out more about Jesus over the coming year.