How to make a king cake

Want to bake your own king cake for Mardi Gras? NOLA.com has a good story this week that walks you through the process. We’ve enjoyed our store-bought cakes this month, but one day it’d be fun to attempt our own cake.

image via Wikipedia

image via Wikipedia

From NOLA.com (full story):

Why would anyone want to make their own king cake, when we in New Orleans are surrounded by bakeries churning them out by the semi-truckload?

Several reasons spring to mind. The first one, though, is most important: Homemade king cakes can be delicious. Second – and this is probably the reason why most king cakes are made from scratch in homes – you want a bite of Carnival season and you don’t live near all the bakeries (looking at you gesture here, online readers).

In addition, king cakes can be expensive. Making a king cake is much less expensive than paying $20 and more for one, especially when you add in the shipping.

King cakes made at home, like any yeast bread, are a labor of love. There’s a reason why the easiest king cake in our recipe database on nola.com is one of our most popular recipes. (It’s below, as well.)

For this story and this recipe, I made half a dozen king cakes, and plenty of mistakes so you don’t have to. The resulting king cake is an amalgam of recipes from a yeast company, from chef John Besh’s first cookbook and a couple of other sources, along with technique ideas from the box ofΒ Mam Papaul’s New Orleans King Cake Mix.

Click here for the recipe and to see the videos of how the cake is made.

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