K is for KING CAKE. . .which signals the most wonderful time of the year for so many New Orleanians.
You already know that New Orleans is well known for Mardi Gras, and you may know Mardi Gras takes place during Carnival. But did you know king cake is not just another sweet treat from the Big Easy? Because it is so special, here are the top 5 favorite things we love about king cake.
Yes, you can! No, it doesn't matter your age, gender, or whether you wanted a baby or not. If you are eating king cake, there will always be the chance you'll end up with a baby. CONGRATULATIONS - you get to purchase the next king cake! Not to worry, bottle feeding and diapers changes are not required.
photo credit: Hlane13 / CC BY 2.0 / Wikimedia Commons
One of the many New Orleans Mardi Gras traditions, most people find it impossible to resist partaking in any of the king cake that may be passed or served. Rarely does a day go by that you do not find yourself in close proximity of a king cake here in the Crescent City in the days leading up to Fat Tuesday.
Remember, if you find the baby - the next king cake is on you! They aren't hard to find because most of the grocery stores and bakeries make them fresh daily.
photo credit : Infrogmation / CC BY 2.0 / Wikimedia Commons
If you like sweets, then you will love king cake. It comes in almost as many flavors as ice cream. There are both classic and specialty versions from a variety of places. A recent trend even has foodies taking it to another level with king cake inspired donuts, bagels, ice cream, coffee, soda, daiquiris, snoballs, smoothies, and vodka. There's even a king cake burger - if you can wrap your head around how that would taste!
Basically, what we're trying to say is that there's a king cake for everyone. And all king cakes for one! Just remember, the more king cake you eat the greater your chance of having a baby (refer to #5).
photo credit: cakechooser.com
There is certainly no shortage of festivals in Louisiana. In fact, more than 400 Louisiana festivals happen each year, making our state the Festival Capital of America. But in a state that celebrates just about everything, we seem to have overlooked one of our most unique exports: the King Cake. This may end up being one of our favorites!
King Cake Festival
~ a celebration benefiting babies and children at Ochsner Hospital ~
photo credit: King Cake Festival (Instagram)
Carnival season, beginning on Kings Day (January 6, 2017) and ending on Ash Wednesday (March 1, 2017), is dominated by the eating of this sweet cinnamon treat. There's a deep history behind the king cake starting in 12th century France as a way to celebrate Epiphany or "Kings Day" - the day the three wise men brought baby Jesus gifts. Hence the long standing tradition.
For Carnival, Fat Tuesday is the biggest day of celebration, and the date it falls on changes from year to year. Fat Tuesday can be any Tuesday between Feb. 3 and March 9. Because Carnival celebration starts on January 6, the Twelfth Night (feast of Epiphany), and picks up speed through midnight on Fat Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday, Carnival season can last anywhere from 29 - 56 days. This means plenty of time to enjoy king cake with friends and family.
Happy Carnival Y'all!
photo credit: Tulane Public Relations