Fat TuesdayCake Ideas

1. Fat Tuesday, or Mardi Gras, is a part of the Carnival festival that precedes the Christian season of Lent. The celebration is held annually the day before Ash Wednesday. Fat Tuesday cakes, or King cakes, have been a Fat Tuesday custom since the Middle Ages, when they were known as Twelfth Night cakes. Typically sweet and buttery, thanks to the desire to indulge in rich food before the strict Lenten diet commences, King cakes usually contain a small plastic baby figurine. The person whose King cake serving contains the figurine is named King or Queen for the day, but is also obligated to provide next year’s King cake.

Traditional Fat Tuesday Cake

2. Traditional King cakes resemble brioche or coffee cake in texture and flavor. They are usually braided into a ring and dusted with sparkling sanding sugar dyed in the Carnival colors of yellow, green and purple. The traditional Fat Tuesday cake may be spiced with flavors such as cinnamon, vanilla, orange or lemon juice, bourbon, pecans and nutmeg. Older versions of the cake use a metal doll or a bean in place of the modern plastic baby.

Filled Fat Tuesday Cake

3. Modern King cakes are stuffed with fillings, making them far richer than classic Fat Tuesday cakes. Fillings include sweetened cream cheese, sugared nut mixtures, fruit fillings and pastry creams. Rum, bourbon, brandy or citrus glazes may be used to augment these flavors. Cajun-style King cakes sometimes take the form of small pastries, which are then deep-fried. In order to ensure that the King cake baby is not accidentally swallowed, a ribbon is sometimes attached to it, making it easier to find.

La Galette des Rois

4. The French ancestor of the King cake, La Galette des Rois (“cake of kings” in French) comes in two very different versions. In Northern France, galette des rois takes the form of a flaky puff pastry ring stuffed with frangipane, or almond cream. In Southern France, galette des rois is called g√Ęteau des rois, and consists of a ring-shaped pastry stuffed with marzipan and topped with colorful candied fruits. Both versions include the traditional hidden figurine. The cakes are served with a paper crown, which the lucky figurine finder wears in order to mark his or her new-found status.

Zulu King Cake

5. A New Orleans-based variant on King cake, Zulu King cake comes from the African-American Mardi Gras tradition. While Zulu King cake resembles modern Fat Tuesday cake in terms of its shape and texture, it is often decorated with shredded coconut and chocolate glazes, and may have a chocolate filling.

Read more: Fat Tuesday Cake Ideas | eHow.com

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