Happy Fat Tuesday! It’s Mardi Gras. It’s also my birthday but at my age, I’d just as soon it not be a day, ya know? Still, it’s MARDI GRAS! On my birthday! This is one year I actually wish I could put up with all the people to celebrate in the home of my heart. Yes, I ❤ New Orleans. And I keep setting books there, or at least sending characters there so I can visit in my imagination if not in person. I have to admit that I’ve never actually been there for Mardi Gras. I’m not exactly a crowd person and Bourbon Street on a normal night is busy enough. Mardi Gra? Crazy times!!! So, to celebrate at home with one of the traditional treats, here’s a quick and different take on King Cake.
Yield: 1 Cake
Prep time: 1 Hours
Cook time: 30 Minutes
Total time: 1 Hours 30 Minutes
FOR THE KING CAKE
1 box of Pillsbury Hot Roll Mix
1 cup of hot water
2 tbsp plus 1/2 cup of butter, divided
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3 tbsp, plus 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
3 tbsp cinnamon
6 tbsp all purpose flour, plus extra for your surface
FOR THE GLAZE
1 16 oz box confectioners sugar
3.5 tbsp corn syrup
3.5 tbsp of milk, plus extra
1 tsp of vanilla or almond extract
1 – Prepare Pillsbury hot roll mix according to package directions for the “sweet dough” through STEP 4.
2 – While the dough is resting, prepare King Cake filling by stirring 1/2 cup of melted butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, and all-purpose flour in a medium bowl until well combined.
3 – On a lightly floured surface, roll rested dough into a rectangle shape with a rolling pin.
4 – Spread prepared filling evenly over rolled out dough, leaving a 1/2 inch border around the edges of the dough.
5 – After the filling is evenly spread over the dough, roll dough tightly. You will tightly roll the dough, lengthwise, to avoid air pockets while baking.
6 – On a 9×13 in baking sheet covered in parchment paper or a silpat, shape the rolled dough to form an oval shaped ring. Fold one end of the dough over the the other and pinch the ends together to close the seams.
7 – Allow the oval dough ring to rise until almost doubled in size. *Dough rises in about 30 minutes in a warm oven (Turn oven on lowest temp for a few minutes, and turn it off. Place dough in warm oven to rise).
8 – Once the king cake has risen until it has almost doubled in size, bake for 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees F or until golden brown on the top. While the King Cake is baking, prepare the glaze.
FOR THE GLAZE
1 – To make the glaze, combine confectioners sugar, corn syrup, milk, and extract until well combined and a smooth consistency. If glaze is too thick, add milk 1 tsp at a time until until desired consistency is reached.
1 – Optional-separate the glaze into bowls and dye green, purple, and yellow with food coloring gels.
2 – Allow the King Cake to cool completely and ice the cake with the prepared glaze.
3. If you want to add a plastic baby to your King Cake, add after the King Cake has cooled. Ice the King Cake after the baby has been added.
Additions: Sanding sugar and/or colored sprinkles are often used to decorate King Cakes.
There are lots of pictures and diagrams for how to make this over on this Food Talk Daily page. CLICK HERE for the details. The first book in the Penumbra Papers, THAT OL’ BLACK MAGIC, begins Sade’s story in New Orleans. It’s a whale of a tale and the action occurs in several spots that are must-sees. Sade’s childhood hero Roman, who is the Legate of New Orleans, and his little witch mate, Verity, meet in front of St. Louis Cathedral, just outside Jackson Square. You can read about them in THE SOUND OF SILENCE. Verity admits she found this recipe and it was so much quicker and easier than using her maman’s recipe that she’ll admit to cheating sometimes. Shhh. Don’t say that out loud. We don’t want her to get in trouble with the spirits of her ancestors. Verity explains, “King Cake is kinda like sparkly cinnamon rolls rather than…you know…cake And we all love cinnamon rolls, right?” Both books are available lots of different places. Just click on the title or the cover to head over to Books2Read for links to your favorite on-line retailer. What about y’all? Are you gonna be all laissez le bon temps rouler today? I am, despite the crazy world. Let the good times roll!