Mardi Gras which French for Fat Tuesday begins on January 6 and culminates on the day before Ash Wednesday. The King Cake is a quintessential confection that is decorated in Mardi Gras colors. Purple signifies justice; green denotes faith; and gold or yellow signifies power. Traditionally, a tiny plastic baby is hidden in the King Cake. Whoever, ends up with the baby is named “King” for a day and bound by custom to host the next party and provide the King Cake.
Since we’re in the Mardi Gras season, I thought it would be fun to make a King Cake. I used the recipe based on King Cake in a Bread Machine from the All Recipes site. Because we’re now in Mardi Gras season, I reposted this delicious King Cake from January 20, 2015!
Ingredients for the King Cake Dough:
I used the following ingredients for the dough: water, salt, unsalted butter, egg, sour cream (I used reduced fat sour cream), granulated sugar, bread flour and bread machine yeast.
First, I placed the dough ingredients into the bread machine in the order listed, and started the machine on the dough cycle. I checked the dough after a bit to see if it was at the proper consistency. It was perfect! After the dough cycle ended, I rolled the dough into a 28×10-inch rectangle on a piece of floured parchment paper. I let it rest every now and then because it was somewhat elastic.
Making the Fillings:
Meanwhile, I worked on the two fillings. I used cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar beaten together for the first filing. I used granulated sugar, cinnamon and melted unsalted butter for the second filling.
Once the dough was roughly 28×10-inches, I trimmed the sides to form the rectangle. First, I spread the cream cheese filling on the dough to about 1-inch from the sides. Then I spread the sugar-cinnamon mixture on the cream cheese filling to about 1-inch from the sides.
Starting at one of the long sides, I carefully began rolling the dough into a log.
I pinched the dough to seal the log, and formed a circle after placing it onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Using a little bit of water, I pinched the ends together to seal the circle and was very careful to ensure an even thickness. Then, I placed a small buttered Pyrex dish in the center to ensure that the center didn’t close up during the rise.
After about 45 minutes, the dough had risen nicely. I popped it into a 350° F oven for 25 minutes. During that time, I made cream cheese icing, which is included in the recipe below.
I let the cake cool for about 10 minutes. Then I decorated the King Cake with the icing, and colored sprinkles. Yum!
King Cake (Bread Machine)
- ¾ cup (6-ounces) milk
- 4 ½ Tablespoons (1.2-ounces) bread flour
King Cake Dough
- 1 cup (8-ounces) milk
- 6 Tablespoons (3-ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons Kosher Salt
- 3 cups (15-ounces) bread flour
- 1 Tablespoon bread machine yeast
- ¾ cup (5.625-ounces) light brown sugar
- 3 Tablespoons bread flour
- 5 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- Pinch salt
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 4 Tablespoons (2-ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2-½ cups (10-ounces) confectioners' sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Purple, green and yellow food glitter
- Whisk together ¾ cup milk and 4 ½ tablespoons bread flour in a small saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly until a paste forms, about 5 minutes. The Tangzhong is ready when a spoon leaves a line in the pan.
King Cake Dough
- Add the dough ingredients to the bread machine in the order listed. Select the dough cycle and start the machine.
- Whisk together the brown sugar, bread flour, cinnamon and salt until combined. Add melted butter; stir to thoroughly combine. Set aside.
- Beat cream cheese, butter, confectioners' sugar and vanilla extract together until smooth and creamy. Set aside.
- When the dough cycle is finished, remove the dough and roll out to a 10×28-inch rectangle on a floured surface. Trim the edges as needed. Spread the cinnamon/sugar mixture on the dough to within 1-inch of the edges.
- Starting at one of the long edges, roll the dough tightly into a 28-inch log. Pinch the edges to seal the log. Place the rolled log onto the prepared baking sheet, seam side down, and form the dough into a ring. Moisten the ends of the dough with a little water; pinch the two ends together to seal.
- Brush king cake with egg wash. Using a sharp knife, slash the top of the king cake to allow for steam to excape. Let rise in a warm place for about 20 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake the king cake in preheated oven until the top is golden brown, about 30 minutes.
- Remove the kinf cake from the oven, and cool for about 10 minutes on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. While the cake is still warm, spoon the icing onto the cake, allowing drips of icing to dribble down the sides of the cake. Immediately, sprinkle purple, green and yellow food glitter on the cake. Yield: One King Cake.