Monday, January 19, 2009

King Cake

It's king cake season for those of you who didn't know. Once the husband realized that, he and the boy--who has been watching the Three Kings Day episode of Dora the Explorer over and over and over--both requested I make it. Since it's only a couple months out of the year that it's acceptable to make it, I figured I'd comply. Last year I have no idea how many batches of this I made--it seemed like I was always making king cake. Not that it's a bad thing, it's just time consuming. If you don't know the origin or history or what the heck king cake even is, check out Wikipedia king cake entry.

I think mine are sufficiently cool enough to apply the frosting and sugar. Normally I go to the trouble of coloring the sugar to be the appropriate green, purple, and yellow, but I asked the husband if he minded if I skipped that part, so I'm just going to sprinkle on whatever colored sugar I have on hand, which is probably red and green because I seem to buy those every single year at Christmastime, thinking I don't have any on hand. Oye.

This is from The Ultimate Southern Living Cookbook which has all sorts of fabulous recipes in it. I really need to bust that bad boy out more often because in flipping through it today, there's a whole lot of good stuff in it. Thankfully I found this recipe online somewhere last year because there is no way I would sit and type all of this out on my own. Enjoy!

Southern Living magazine's King Cake
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 (16 ounce) container sour cream
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 (.25 ounce) envelopes active dry yeast
1 tablespoon white sugar
1/2 cup warm water (100 to 110 degrees)
2 eggs
6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
Colored Frostings (see below)
Colored Sugars (see below)

Colored Frosting:
3 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons butter, melted
3 tablespoons milk
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 drops green food color
2 drops yellow food coloring
2 drops blue food coloring
2 drops red food color

Colored sugars:
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 drops green food color
2 drops yellow food coloring
2 drops red food color
2 drops blue food coloring

COOK first 4 ingredients in a saucepan over low heat, stirring often, until butter melts. Cool mixture to 100 degrees to 110 degrees.

DISSOLVE yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar in 1/2 cup warm water in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Add butter mixture, eggs, and 2 cups flour; beat at medium speed with an electric mixer 2 minutes or until smooth. Gradually stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough.

TURN dough onto a lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Place in a well-greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85 degrees), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in bulk.

STIR together 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon; set aside.

PUNCH dough down; divide in half. Turn 1 portion out onto a lightly floured surface; roll to a 28- x 10-inch rectangle. Spread half each of cinnamon mixture and softened butter on dough. Roll dough, jellyroll fashion, starting at long side. Place dough roll, seam side down, on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bring ends together to form an oval ring, moistening and pinching edges together to seal. Repeat with remaining dough, cinnamon mixture, and butter.

COVER and let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, 20 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

BAKE at 375 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden. Decorate with bands of Colored Frostings, and sprinkle with Colored Sugars.

COLORED FROSTINGS: Stir together powdered sugar and melted butter. Add milk to reach desired consistency for drizzling; stir in vanilla. Divide frosting into 3 batches, tinting 1 green, 1 yellow, and combining red and blue food coloring for purple frosting.

COLORED SUGARS: Place 1/2 cup sugar and drop of green food coloring in a jar or zip-top plastic bag; seal. Shake vigorously to evenly mix color with sugar. Repeat procedure with 1/2 cup sugar and yellow food coloring. For purple, combine 1 drop red and 1 drop blue food coloring before adding to remaining 1/2 cup sugar

No comments: