King Cake for Mardi Gras
Being a Brit, I hadn’t heard of King Cake until quite recently. Apparently, it’s a popular concoction from New Orleans that’s traditionally eaten during the Mardi Gras season between Twelth Night (6 January) and Ash Wednesday. This sweet treat is said to have been brought to the area by French settlers and is decorated with the traditional Mardi Gras colours of purple, green and gold representing justice, faith and power.
Traditionally, and quite disturbingly, the cake contains a plastic baby (representing Jesus) and whoever finds the trinket in their helping wins the ‘honour’ of hosting the next party or making the next cake. As a decidedly non-religious type, my King Cake is of the secular variety, which is why I decorated it with a plastic Elvis instead – him being The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, an’ all that…
I made my King Cake as part of Fairtrade Fortnight – an event run by the Fairtrade Foundation in order to promote ethical trade terms and local sustainability for farmers in the developing world. Made from as many Fair Trade ingrediants as I could get my hands on (including sugar and icing sugar), my cake has been entered into the Fairtrade Bake off. If you like the look of it, please do take a minute to visit the site and vote for my King Cake in the image gallery – it would be much appreciated.
Update: The competition is now over and I won a runner-up prize, so if you voted for me – thanks!
I used a recipe from Allrecipes.com, although I halved the quantities.