Sucré’s Ziggy Stardust Cream Cheese King Cake (Kristine Froeba)
It’s that time of the year again. You’ve probably already had one.
If not, you’re planning on buying two. But which King Cake will it be? Things have changed since McKenzie’s Bakery held sovereignty over King Cake’s court. Before the year 2000, New Orleanians chose between the small round King Cake or the large oval classroom size. There was no question of which “type” of King Cake. King Cake was, simply, King Cake. The cake was plain, akin to French bread, narrow, no filling, barely sweet, but covered with colored sugar crystals. Earliest memories of King Cake for most New Orleanians are King Cake parties in grammar school. The teacher bringing a sugary chunk of cake to your desk. Green, Gold, and Purple sugar all over your uniform. Terrified you’d get the baby. Hoping you’d get the baby. If you lost, or won, depending on how you saw it, your mother would be delivering the next King Cake to class. Somehow, I always got the baby.
Today’s King Cake market is wildly different. The rules are—there are no rules. Continue reading »