Thursday, March 3, 2011

Easy Mardi Gras King Cake

Celebrate Mardi Gras 🎉 💛 with this super simple King Cake! This semi-homemade king cake is filled with a lightly sweetened lemon-cream cheese filling and topped with colorful sprinkles. 
I have only enjoyed two King Cakes in my life. Both cakes were purchased from a grocery store. The Mardi Gras King Cake is a New Orleans tradition served after January 6th until Mardi Gras Day - Fat Tuesday.

The cake has a small trinket (often a small toy baby, sometimes said to represent the Christ child) inside. The person who gets the piece of cake with the trinket has various privileges and obligations (such as buying the cake for the next celebration).

You can click here to read the history behind this beautiful cake. King cakes are made of a Danish dough filled with a fruit filling, cream filling or a combination of both.The king cake is then baked and decorated in the traditional Mardi Gras colors; gold (for power), green (for faith) and purple (for justice).

It never dawned on me to try and make this yummy sweet bread with colorful sprinkles myself. I guess I thought they were kind of difficult to make.Well, they aren't!!! This pretty king cake is so easy peasy to make because it utilizes Rhodes frozen bread dough. 

Monday morning while I was blog hopping I came across this super easy recipe at Southern Plate. As soon as I saw the photo I immediately went to the store to get cream cheese and sprinkles. Well lets just say tried to get sprinkles. As you can see from my photo above, I encountered the same problem Christy did.  

I couldn't find purple sprinkles for the life of me. So I did just as Christy did and improvised with pink sprinkles.
My kids were so excited to see this waiting for them when they got home from school.

My daughter loved the pink sprinkles, but then she loves everything PINK! Of course I had a piece and then sent the last of it off to work with my husband. All I can say is this is one dangerous cake to leave around our house.
If you want to celebrate a little Mardi gras in your home, I hope you'll give this easy recipe a try.

Here are some step by step photos. In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, and extract and mix until creamy and blended. Roll out your dough on a un floured surface. I found it so much easier to roll the dough out without adding flour. 

Roll to a rectangle approx. 10 x 18 inches. Spread the cream cheese mixture over dough to within an inch of each side. Roll up longways (to make a long log) and brush the final edge with water before pressing it into the log to seal. Take log and form into a circle, pressing the ends into each other and brushing with water if needed to seal together.

Spray top lightly with cooking spray and cover with plastic wrap. Set in warm place to rise for 45 minute to an hour. Remove plastic wrap and bake in 350 degree oven for 30-35 minutes. Allow to cool. 

Mix confectioner’s glaze and drizzle over top of cake with a spoon. I chose not to place anything inside of the king cake this time, but if you want to you can place a small plastic doll or trinket inside the cake after it's baked.

Immediately sprinkle colored sprinkles over the glaze. Allow to sit until the glaze dries. Goodness this was the hardest part of the whole recipe, waiting!!!!!! It was worth it because this King Cake was delicious. I loved the cream cheese filling and I can't wait to make it again.

adapted from: Southern Plate


ann said... #

Tina, this really looks beautiful. I love the fact that it's easy. This will be on my weekend "to do" list.

Anonymous said... #

Tina, thanks for posting this recipe! It sounds delicious, but I don't think that I would add anything plastic BEFORE I bake it. What do you think? I enjoy your site very much! Thanks for all the yummy recipes!

Unknown said... #

I've never heard of a King Cake before. It looks lovely though, I think I might have to try and make one sometime. :)

Mandy said... #

Looks great, very impressive! I grew up near New Orleans and have never made my own traditional king cake. With so many great bakeries around me, I never needed to! I did however make a kid-friendly, cheater-version back in January after king cake season just began -

I think when I do feel like upgrading from that, then I'll try your recipe! Thanks for sharing!


Anonymous said... #

Tina, I love your blog. You have the best one out there. I saw this recipe on Southern Plate's website too and you are supposed to put the baby in the cake after it has already been baked. That is what Christy says.

Tina Butler said... #

I went back and looked and I do see that part at the end. I looked at a few recipes online and they were adding the doll before baking and that does not make sense to me. If I add anything it will be a pecan.

Quirky Jessi said... #

I feel silly admitting this, but I didn't realize the Mardi Gras colors had specific meanings. Learn something new everyday!

Unknown said... #

Hi Tina! This recipe is gorgeous. I love the colors ... and how easy you've made it look. said... #

The recipe is worth a try, I would really take a good look on this for the weekend.

I Play Outside The Box said... #

That turned out so pretty!!! Using a pecan, in place of a trinket, is a brilliant idea !!

Anonymous said... #

You can take a bit of blue sugar and shake in small covered container with a drop of red food coloring to make purple. Spread on plate and allow to dry.

Tina Butler said... #

Thank you for the food coloring tip. I will definetly do that next time. I think this would be a great recipe as well for a easter egg bread.

Anonymous said... #

Hi Tina, baking for a bake sale. This looks so easy I'm making a couple for the sale. I think it will be a big hit. Thanks for the recipe.

Tina Butler said... #

This will be perfect for a bake sale. Good Luck on the sale.

Unknown said... #

Tina thanks for stopping by my blog! I am just lovin the sound of this cake! Now Im off to go browse your site! So happy to meet you! : )

Michelle @ On and Off My Plate said... #

How fun...every year I say I am going to make one and then every year I end of baking and eating virtually! Nie job!

Siggy said... #

FABULOUS! I love King Cake! I don't do a baby or Pecan or anything else ever since we had a King Cake at work SEVERAL years ago and a guy actually choked on the stupid thing....of course he wasn't the brightest crayon in the box, lol!

Anonymous said... #

I linked up my Texas sheet cake here by mistake--meant to link it up to today's Potluck Sunday, which I did...sorry!

Anonymous said... #

I just made this and it is FABULOUS! Thank's for posting such an easy to make King Cake!

Anonymous said... #

Remember, you can color your own sanding sugar. Place sugar in a zip top bag and add a littl paste food coloring...knead until blended. OR you can just color the icings (purple, gold and green) and sprinkle with clear sugar.

Coworker said... #

I would need to make this a day ahead. Does it need to be refrigerated overnite?

Anonymous said... #

Tina, this recipe looks really great. I had the King Cake assignment due in French for 31st March. I chose this one to do with another friend. It wasn't too hard and we had fun doing it. I was sick so I couldn't go but my friend brought me a piece of it and the cream cheese filling was really good!

Suzan said... #

No one has commented for almost a year. I just wanted to see your recipe because this year I didn't want to make the huge king cake I usually make. Just to let you know, the baby is place in after it is cooked. You just lift up a side & poke it in. This looks like a great shortcut & I have my bread dough thawing. Thanks!