Gâteau Breton

Preparation info

  • Serves


    • Difficulty


    • Ready in

      1 hr 5

Appears in

The French Kitchen: A Cookbook

The French Kitchen

By Joanne Harris and Fran Warde

Published 2002

  • About

This is a traditional Breton cake with a rich, buttery taste and a slightly ‘sandy’ texture, like that of the sable biscuits of the region. Everyone has their own private way of doing it. This is the plain recipe, from Danielle Stephan of Trégastel, but you can fill your gateau with raspberry jam, prunes or liqueur-soaked fruit for a moist, luxurious version.


  • 200 g flour
  • 50 g soft butter, cut into small knobs, plus extra for greasing
  • 200 g unrefined caster sugar
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 5 egg yolks
  • milk for glazing


    Heat the oven to 160°C/gas 3. Generously butter a 24cm push-up-bottom cake tin.

    Place the flour in a bowl, add the butter, sugar, orange zest and egg yolks, and work together with your fingers until all the ingredients are evenly blended – the mixture will be quite sticky. Put the mixture into the prepared cake tin and spread it out with your hands.

    Make a pattern in the top of the cake mixture with a knife or pastry cutter, and brush the surface with a little milk. Bake for 35 minutes, until the cake is golden brown and has come away from the sides of the tin.

    Leave to cool in the tin for 5 minutes before turning out.