Larousse (page 799) describe Pithivier as a large round puff pastry tart with scalloped edges, filled with an almond cream.This speciality of Pithiviers which is in the Orléans region of France, is traditionally served as a 12th night cake.

Head straight on to the recipe for Pithivier ♥

12 years ago, my friend’s daughter asked if Patch could come and sleep over. She told me very clearly that when I brought Patch to her I should remember to pack her pyjamas and toothbrush. This same beautiful blonde child came to me a few years later, telling me she was going to run away from home. I went with her to her bedroom to help her pack, remembering the all-important sleeping apparel. We first negotiated how many nights she would be away from home, and then worked out how much she could carry. When I explained that she would have nowhere to brush her teeth, and only the hard ground to sleep on, she decided her mother was not that bad after all, and her own bed was far more comfortable. This is an easy negotiation with a 6 year old, but not so easy with a 60 year old. My friend wants to leave her husband. Not because he is a bad person, or treats her cruelly, but because she doesn’t like her circumstances. And I am not sure how to negotiate her leaving when I think her circumstances are amazing. She has a housekeeper who manages the staff, a cook, someone who does the cleaning and someone to attend to the garden. Her only ‘job’ is to do the grocery shopping. She spends her days smoking, playing computer games and drinking. When her husband asks one thing of her she gets upset. And for this she wants to leave. And I don’t get it! I know I don’t see what is going on ‘behind doors’ but we have travelled with them and her life is not that bad at all. It does however make me grateful that I have a life I want to live. That I enjoy all that I do and that for now, my only job is to see to the household. I have spent much of my time in the kitchen baking. I made the pithiviers twice. The first time I was not happy with the result, but that did not stop Dave eating every last bite of the cake. The second one could have puffed up a bit more, but regardless it was a great treat that we have enjoyed with our afternoon espresso.

Pithivier Ready For 12th Night
Pithivier Ready For 12th Night

Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Recipe For Pithivier

This cake can be made in advance and is perfect served with an afternoon espresso
Recipe Category: Baking, Dessert
Makes enough for: 1 Pithivier
All Rights Reserved: Adapted From Larousse Gastronomique page 799


  • 50 g butter
  • 50 g fructose
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 20 g tapioca flour
  • 50 g ground almonds
  • 15 mls amaretto
  • 250 g puff pastry divided
  • Flour for dusting

for the egg wash

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2.5 mls water


  • Place the butter into a bowl
  • Cream using a spatula
  • Add the fructose and mix in
  • Add one egg yolk at a time, mixing until completely incorporated
  • Add the flour, almonds and amaretto
  • Mix until completely combined
  • Place into the fridge for 30 minutes
  • Weigh out 100g puff pastry
  • Turn onto a lightly floured surface
  • Roll into a 20cm circle
  • Place onto a baking tray
  • Spread the almond mixture onto the pastry, leaving a 1cm gap around the edge
  • Place the egg yolk and water into a bowl for the egg wash
  • Whisk together
  • Brush the egg wash onto the pastry edge
  • Roll out the balance of the pastry into a 20cm circle
  • Place on top of the almond covered pastry, lining up the edges
  • Seal the edges completely
  • Scallop the edge using a knife
  • Score the top
  • Brush on the egg wash over the top of the pastry
  • Place into the fridge while you preheat the oven
  • Preheat the oven to 200° Celsius
  • Bake for 25 minutes
  • Remove from the oven and place the baking tray onto a wire rack to cool

Click on the links for conversions and notes.

Blog-checking lines: For the month of December, Kat challenged us to make Gateaux Pithiviers.

A Slice Of Pithivier
A Slice Of Pithivier

What I blogged December 28:

I am on leave until the 11th of January. When I can, I will reply to comments on my posts. I wish all of you a very blessed festive season. May 2016 hold all your dreams.

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26 thoughts on “Pithivier

  1. That is so strange of your friend, surely one does not leave their life behind over a spot of grocery shopping?!
    I love Pithivier, we make a Mushroom Pithivier that is sooooooo arm. Will have to give the sweet variety a go. 🙂

  2. I’ve never had or heard of Pithivier before – but reading your ingredient list has me drolling – this sounds wonderful Tandy – thanks for sharing!

  3. I just love coming here Tandy, because I always learn of a new dish that I’ve never heard of. I am not a big pastry maker, but I will do so to try this.

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