Tuesday, February 16, 2010

King Cake!

Dear Megs,

This year I made my first Mardi Gras King Cake! Usually I order one from Gambino's, which used to be the best bakery in New Orleans, according to my mom. I don't know if it still is...Gambino got killed a few years back. Mob hit, I guess.

Anyway, King Cake isn't really cake, it's a sweet yeast bread that's really more like a breakfast bread or a danish of some sort. Iced with a simple confectioner's glaze, sprinkled with colored sugar. Num! After baking, you stuff a plastic baby in there somewhere, and the person who gets the baby has to bring the next cake or host the next party, depending on how you do it. New Orleans people have a very specific idea of what the baby is supposed to look like, but I had to make do with eBay and accidentally ordered these giant babies that are totally wrong. Oh well. Next year. There are lots of recipes online, but I decided to go with the simplest one, here. Glad I did! It was light and moist and wonderful and delicious. You should make one, but ignore the comments on that site - they aren't supposed to be extravagant or decadent or, well, cake. The secret to a good king cake, says my mom, is that king cake isn't very good. She said mine was better than Gambino's, but she has to say that. She's my mom.

Incidentally, here's what became of the baby:



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