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King Cakes for Mardi Gras!

February 16, 2012
By: Smyrna Vinings Marietta MK
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Mardi Gras, "Fat Tuesday," is the last day of the Carnival season, and it always falls the day before Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. And with this being a holiday weekend (President's Day) for many, why not enjoy some craft time (see mask making below) and maybe even try to make your own king cake? Personally, I love the cinnamon flavor king cakes at Kroger, but it's good to have this recipe for when Mardi Gras season is over. (Maybe next year I'll actually get the kids to New Orleans for Mardi Gras for the first time....)

Brought to the Gulf states area by colonists from France and Spain, King Cake is associated with Carnival or Mardi Gras. King cake parties in New Orleans are documented back to the eighteenth century and the cakes come in a number of styles!  The most simple is similar to the recipe listed below. Cajun King Cakes are traditionally deep-fat-fried like a doughnut - and are covered in sugar topping. It it customary to bake a small trinket (normally a plastic baby) into the cake and make 2 inch slices. The person who gets the piece of cake with the baby usually has to throw the next party, or bring the next king cake...but you can make your own tradition.  Homemade King Cake Recipe:

  • 1 can of cinnamon rolls
  • A container of cream cheese icing
  • Lots of Colored sprinkles (purple, green and yellow are traditional)

Separate the cinnamon rolls and roll them out by hand into a log shape.
Make the log into an oval and pinch the ends together.
Place on a cookie sheet and bake as directed.
Spread icing on the finished "cake."
Sprinkle sections with colored sugar, as pictured above.

As for the "baby," you may not want to bake that into the cake (assuming you can even find one). But if you were in New Orleans, I guarantee it would be there!