• Mardi Gras- Mangeons des galettes des rois!!

    many different kinds of donuts: King cake is an iconic pastry around Mardi Gras—but what is king cake, exactly? Find out the meaning behind this festive sweet.© Lynne Mitchell - Getty Images
     King cake is an iconic pastry around Mardi Gras—but what is king cake, exactly? Find out the meaning behind this festive sweet.

    King cake season starts on January 6, which is known as Three Kings' Day, Twelfth Night, or the Epiphany, and lasts until Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday. (Fat Tuesday is also known as Shove Tuesday and it's a day for pancakes!) Although the recipe varies, king cake is usually made from a brioche-like dough that's twisted into a ring and filled with various ingredients like cinnamon, cream cheese, and praline. If you like cinnamon rolls, you'll love it!

    King cake is consumed by people all around the world and comes in many different flavors and styles. In France, it's known as galette des rois and in Mexico it is called rosca de reye, and is often decorated with figs, quince paste and candied fruit. One particularly well-known version of king cake is the kind you find in New Orleans: It's covered in a white glaze, then decorated with sanding sugar in the colors purple, green, and gold. (Purple symbolizes justice, green is for faith, and gold is for power.) It is believed that the king cake tradition came to New Orleans from France in 1870.

    Why is there a plastic baby in king cake?

    It is very common to find a small plastic baby figurine hidden within a ring of king cake. While there are many beliefs, some say that the figurine represents the Baby Jesus. (During the celebration of Epiphany, it is recognized that the Three Kings or Wise Men brought gifts to the Baby Jesus.) Things like beans, coins, and pecans have also been hidden inside a king cake instead of a plastic baby. As tradition goes, whoever finds the trinket inside their slice of king cake is crowned king or queen for the day—it's a symbol of good luck.

    What does king cake taste like?

    King cake is like a rich, sweet danish, with flavors of cinnamon and sometimes cream cheese or pecans. It's called a cake, but it tastes more like a pastry!

    When is king cake eaten?

    King cake is typically made and eaten starting January 6, known as Epiphany, and through to Mardi Gras—this is Carnival season. Mardi Gras often takes place in February but sometimes occurs in early March.

    What is a "krewe"??

    "Krewe" is a word often associated with Mardi Gras.  A krewe (pronounced "crew") is a social organization that stages parades and/or balls for the Carnival season. The term is best known for its association with Mardi Gras celebrations in New Orleans, but is also used in other Carnival celebrations throughout Louisiana.