Who doesn’t like a cinnamony, sugary, squidgy, brightly coloured party in your mouth? We are, of course, referring to King Cake!
The King Cake tradition is thought to have been brought to New Orleans in around 1870 from France. We’re guessing they didn’t use the same colourings back then(!), but this carnival treat is traditionally a cross between a coffee cake and a French pastry, shaped in an oval, like a massive donut. But better.
There is a twist, though – one lucky cake muncher will find a little plastic baby in their slice! This baby-in-a-cake represents
the day Jesus first showed himself to the three wise men. “Epiphany” comes from the Greek word for “to show”, so in essence, King Cakes are a condensed image of Jesus in a manger with the three Wise Men at his side. Cakes taste better than mangers, we suppose.
Nowadays, whoever find the baby in their slice of cake is named King for a day and must provide the next King Cake and host the next party!
We’ve been hunting for the best King Cake recipe and, courtesy of Southern Living, our prayers have been answered! Now you can all replace your not so traditional/exciting pancake day rituals with the baking of a colourful beacon of NOLA joy.
We’ve handily converted all of the measurement to metric for you – You’re welcome! 😉
Traditional King Cake Recipe
For the cake:
- 450g sour cream
- 50g sugar
- 40g butter
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 x 7g sachets active dry yeast
- 120ml warm water
- 1 tablespoon sugar (to activate yeast)
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 900g bread flour
For the centre:
- 50g butter, softened
- 75g sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
For the glaze / topping:
- 450g powdered sugar
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 to 4 tablespoons milk
- Purple, green, and gold tinted sparkling sugar sprinkles!