What started out as a dry french bread dough cake with a bean hidden in it has over the past 300 years evolved into a delicious danish type dough cake with sweet cream, caramelized sugar and dried fruit placed decoratively on top. This year was my very first year to try it, not the last to be sure.. it really was delicious, and it made my birthday on the 9th extra special.
The “king cake” takes its name from the biblical three kings. In Catholic liturgical tradition, the Solemnity of Epiphany – commemorated on January 6 – celebrates the visit of the Magi to the Christ Child. The Eve of Epiphany (the night of January 5) is popularly known as Twelfth Night (the Twelve Days of Christmas are counted from Christmas Eve until this night). The season for king cake extends from the end of the Twelve Days of Christmas (Twelfth Night and Epiphany Day), up until Mardi Gras, or “Fat Tuesday;” the day before the start of Lent. Some organizations or groups of friends may have “king cake parties” every week through the Carnival season. In Portugal and France, whoever gets the King cake trinket is expected to buy the next cake for these get-togethers