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King Cake

Rhonda Ruckman, Cochon Butcher, New Orleans - March 3rd, 2014

Yield: 1 pound of dough or 4 individual cakes

Cinnamon sugar:

  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 Tbsps. raw sugar

Mix all ingredients in bowl; reserve.

King cake icing:

  • 1 cup + 2 Tbsps. confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 Tbsps. whole milk
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl of standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment; mix until smooth; reserve.

Cinnamon brioche:

  • 2 tsps. yeast
  • 1/4 cup whole milk, warm
  • 1 1/3 cups bread or high gluten flour
  • 2 Tbsps. granulated sugar
  • salt
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 lg. eggs
  • 6 Tbsps. unsalted butter, chilled and cut into cubes
  • festive sugars (for decorating)
  1. Dissolve yeast in milk 5 minutes; add yeast and rest of ingredients into bowl of stand mixer with dough hook attached; mix on medium speed 10 minutes, until dough has pulled away from sides of bowl; press dough into sheet pan; cover with plastic wrap; chill 2 hours or overnight.

  2. Preheat oven to 350˚F.

  3. Divide chilled dough into 4 equal pieces; roll each piece into a rectangle; sprinkle liberally with reserved cinnamon sugar; cut each piece lengthwise into two pieces; roll each piece into a rope; braid the two ropes together end over end; bring the braid together into a circle; place each cake onto sheet pan; cover with towel; let rise in warm spot (80˚F) 2 to 3 hours until doubled; bake 20 to 25 minutes until golden; remove from oven; cool to room temperature; apply reserved icing and festive sugars.