King Cake, also known as Galette des Rois, is a traditional dessert that is prominently served during the carnival season, especially in countries such as France, Brazil, and New Orleans. It is usually baked in the shape of a crown, which signifies the biblical Three Kings who visited baby Jesus on Epiphany. The King Cake is usually covered with colorful icing or sugar, and may contain one or more tiny plastic or porcelain figures, known as fèves, that are hidden inside the cake. It is said that whoever finds the fève in their slice will have good luck for the year. Making a King Cake from scratch may seem intimidating, but with this simple recipe, you can create a delicious pastry treat that will surely impress your family and friends.
– 1/2 cup milk
– 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
– 3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
– 1/4 cup granulated sugar
– 1 teaspoon salt
– 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
– 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
– 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
– 2 large eggs
– 1/4 cup water
– 1/4 cup brown sugar
– 1/2 cup chopped pecans
– 1 fève or small figurine (optional)
– 2 cups powdered sugar
– 2 tablespoons lemon juice
– 2-3 tablespoons milk
– Food coloring (green, yellow, and purple)
– Gold sanding sugar (optional)
1. Warm the milk in a small saucepan until it’s just warm enough to activate the yeast. Remove from heat and sprinkle yeast over milk. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes, until the yeast is foamy.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
3. Using a stand mixer or hand mixer on medium-low speed, beat butter into the dry ingredients just until the mixture is crumbly.
4. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually add water and yeast mixture, and beat until the dough is smooth and elastic.
5. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm, draft-free place for 1 to 2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in size.
6. Meanwhile, make the filling by combining brown sugar, chopped pecans, and cinnamon in a small bowl.
7. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
8. Once the dough has risen, punch it down and turn it out onto a floured surface. Roll the dough into a rectangle that is about 20 x 12 inches.
9. Sprinkle the filling evenly over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges.
10. If using a fève or small figurine, place it somewhere in the filling.
11. Roll the dough up tightly, starting with the long side.
12. Pinch the ends together to form a ring, and tuck one end under the other.
13. Place the ring on the prepared baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise for another 30 minutes.
14. Bake the cake for 25-30 minutes or until the top is lightly golden brown. Allow the cake to cool completely before adding the glaze.
15. To make the glaze, whisk together powdered sugar, lemon juice, and enough milk to make a thin, spreadable glaze.
16. Divide the glaze into three bowls and color with green, yellow, and purple food coloring.
17. Spread each color of glaze over different sections of the cake. Sprinkle with gold sanding sugar, if desired.
18. Slice and serve. Bon appétit!
– Warm the milk and activate the yeast
– Beat butter, eggs, and yeast mixture into the dry ingredients to form a dough
– Let the dough rise for 1-2 hours
– Make filling by mixing brown sugar, chopped pecans, and cinnamon
– Roll out the dough, sprinkle the filling, and roll up tightly
– Bake the cake for 25-30 minutes
– Allow to cool completely and make the glaze by mixing powdered sugar, lemon juice, and milk
– Divide the glaze into three bowls and color with green, yellow, and purple food coloring
– Spread each color of glaze on the cake and sprinkle with gold sanding sugar
– Serve and enjoy!