Was told King Cake is basically a cinnamon roll, filled with vanilla pudding, and topped with decorative icing. Is that really true?
That's the kind I've had OP. I'm in Houston though so maybe there really is a good one in LA but I've known people who had them sent from a "great place" in NO but they still tasted like the grocery store ones. Maybe a little more moist but pretty the same. The icing is actually nothing more than colored sugar, not even actual icing.
They used to bake a little plastic baby in the cake and the person who got the baby in their slice had to buy the next king cake.
This is what they did years ago when I lived on the Gulf Coast. I have no idea if they still do it.
R2, Wouldn't spend $30 to order an "authentic" cake just to get a plastic baby.
R1, They don't sell them in Vegas, so I was wondering what I was missing. Don't need to pay for pretty but tasteless colored sugar.
There are many different kinds. The usual one you find in grocery stores and neighborhood bakeries is a cinnamon coffee cake in an oval shape, decorated with green, gold and purple sugar crystals. Some have icing in addition to sprinkles, others don't.
The original (still served in old New Orleans French bakeries) was called the galette du roi, and was a drier version, more like a brioche, with a subtle almond flavor and not a lot of sugar.
Today's king cakes are often filled with sweet jam or other fillings, often in fruit flavors (I've never heard of vanilla pudding or custard).
Another popular variation is the pecan-praline king cake, which has a sticky-bun style topping with chopped pecans.
Here's a picture of a slice of a common king cake, without icing or filling. They are good with strong black coffee.
I don't think they actually bake the baby inside anymore (fear of choking children and lawsuits.) They give you the baby on the side and you're supposed to place it under a piece.
The ones we had when I was little growing up in New Orleans didn't have the cream cheese filling but maybe there were fancier, more expensive versions we couldn't afford.
[quote]Wouldn't spend $30 to order an "authentic" cake just to get a plastic baby.
They're pretty easy to make -- take a basic cinnamon coffee cake recipe and fashion the dough into a braided cake, like challah bread.
Put white confectioner's icing on top if you want it extra sweet.
While the king cake is baking, use food coloring to dye three little batches of crystallized sugar: purple, green and gold. (Don't get it too wet.) When the cake comes out of the oven, sprinkle it with the sugar in alternating bands.
If you don't have the plastic baby, any kind of charm will do... a lot of people use an uncooked bean. Don't bake it into the cake, but poke it into the bottom with your finger while the cake is still warm, before you frost/sugar it.
The really lazy version (which is OK but not as good) involves a tube of Pillsbury cinnamon biscuit dough -- you can make a bunch of personal-sized cakes and decorate them.
Int he 70s, when I was a kid, King Cakes had no fillings at all. It was such a fun time hoping and guessing where the baby was! Yes they were somewhat dry, not too sweet cinnamon roll a subtle lemon flavor.
From the 80s on, the filling have become more elaborate w/ fruits, cream cheese, then fruits and cream cheese, and even chocolate! And then the praline!
I still like the classic 70s kind. And the icing is like a plain powdered sugar kind but with the sugar sprinkles it gives it a crunchy texture. And heated in the microwave and some melted butter, yum!
R4, Thanks for your authenticity, that I couldn't tell from looking at recipes online. A local Vegas bakery offered to sell me a special order King Cake, saying that it's supposed to be filled with vanilla pudding. I had a piece last year at Orleans Casino buffet for Fat Tuesday. It's probably the almond flavor that I fell in love with but then I think that use a local Hispanic bakery.
R6 here, Oh and as adults, if you get the baby, it is tradition to buy the next cake. So ....definitely the baby is "more fun" as a kid. I just really liked staring at that king cake and guessing where the baby is....
[quote]The really lazy version (which is OK but not as good) involves a tube of Pillsbury cinnamon biscuit dough -- you can make a bunch of personal-sized cakes and decorate them.
This must be a Semi-Homemade King Kake!
The First Concubine of New York
Someone sent one to our office years ago. It looked like doughnut dough made into a ring and then deep fried. It was nasty.