On January 6th, King’s Day, Executive Pastry Chef Maggie Scales of the Link Restaurant Group will be offering several flavors and sizes of king cakes at both Cochon Butcher and La Boulangerie on Magazine Street. Chef Scales’ king cakes are filled with local flavor from the traditional to the specialty, including: cinnamon, apple almond and chocolate. She will also serve the famous “Elvis,” filled with peanut butter, banana and topped with house-cured bacon, marshmallow and traditional Mardi Gras sprinkles. In place of the traditional small plastic “baby,” all of Chef Scales’ cakes contain a petite pink pig as their signature “baby.” Custom dictates whoever gets the “baby” must provide the king cake for the next party, keeping the celebration rolling all season long!
La Boulangerie will also be selling a traditional French Galette des Rois, which are two rounds of puff pastry filled with almond cream. The Galette des Rois are topped with a small porcelain feve, and come in two sizes: 8” ($25) and 10” ($40).
The traditional New Orleans-style king cakes are also created in two sizes: a 6-inch individual ($9) and a 9-inch large ($30), which serves up to 12 people. The Elvis will be sold at Cochon Butcher daily by the slice or as a large special order cake ($40) with a required 24-hours notice. The New Orleans-style king cakes are available at Cochon Butcher, while both the French and New Orleans-style king cakes will be available at La Boulangerie for purchase from January 6th until Fat Tuesday (February 25), which is the day before the beginning of Lent.
The traditional king cake is a sweetened bread, made from brioche dough, adorned with a sprinkling of sugar. Over the years, New Orleans bakers have expanded on the traditional king cake, lavishly decorating them with icing and sugar in the traditional Mardi Gras colors of purple, green and gold, and adding delectable fillings.
The Feast of the Epiphany, also known as Twelve Night, is celebrated on January 6th, and marks the official beginning of the Mardi Gras season. The tradition of the king cakes is thought to have originated as part of this event, which honors the coming of the Three Wise Men who traveled great distances to bring gifts to the Christ Child.