The King Cake is in fact a bizarre looking cinnamon roll. It is best to attach a note explaining its history and the unusual (plastic) content of the cake. After baking one inserts a little plastic baby within. The person who receives the piece containing the King Baby is obliged to throw next year's Mardi Gras party! Once past the initial distrust of its strange appearance, the cake is generally set upon and consumed with an enthusiasm unmatched by any of my other culinary achievements!

Mardi Gras celebrations in New Orleans often last weeks, however Mardi Gras day is always the Tuesday before Lent (Ash Wednesday) In New Orleans the party stops abruptly at Midnight, after which no-one remains costumed on the street, leaving in their wake gutters filled with soaken debris, brigades of water cannons and clean-up crews armed with brooms.



P.S. I personally reduced the sugar in this recipe, and still found it incredibly sweet...

2 Tbsp. sugar(granulated)

2/3 cup milk

2 envelopes active dry yeast

3/8 cup granulated sugar

1/3 cup very warm water

2/3 tsp. salt

1 stick butter

Grated rind - 1 lemon

4 eggs

Grated rind- 1 orange

6 cups flour(more if needed)

Combine 2 tbsp. sugar, yeast and water in shallow mixing bowl, let stand several minutes until foaming. Melt slowly on double boiler- butter, milk, sugar, and salt. Let stand until luke warm. Beat eggs into yeast. Add milk mixture to yeast and eggs. Add grated rinds.

Add flour, one cup at a time. Knead vigorously 5-10 minutes until dough springs back when poked. Grease mixing bowl with butter. Place dough in bowl, cover with damp cloth, and place in warm, still environment (such as a turned-off stove)

1 box dark brown sugar

4 tbsp. cinnamon

2 cups granulated sugar

2 sticks melted butter

While dough is rising, mix sugars and spice. Punch down dough on large floured surface. Roll out to approximately 36 by 18 inches. Brush with melted butter, then sprinkle with sugar/spice mixture. Cut lengthwise into 3 long strips, rolling each lengthwise like a jelly roll. Braid. Cover all with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in bulk.

1 egg (for brushing)

1 cup white sugar (tint YELLOW)

1 cup white sugar (tint GREEN)

1 cup white sugar (tint PURPLE=RED+BLUE)

Sprinkle with sugar dyed purple, yellow and green with food colouring.

Bake at 350 degrees in oven for 20-30 minutes.

After baking, insert doll (King Baby) from beneath.

Serve to guests, and enjoy their reactions of mingled disgust and delight (generally in that order!


Year 2000 King Cake!

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