Posts tagged King Cake
It’s Twelfth Night (Jan.6), the formal start of the 2013 Carnival Season! I hope that excites you, because it excites me! It is a short season this year, as Fat Tuesday is Feb.12. As of today, there are 37 days to Fat Tuesday!! Plus, the Super Bowl will be played in New Orleans on Feb.3. As I’ve written before, this means the parades will be split into two sections, with the nine day Super Bowl break occurring in the middle.
Twelfth Night is the start of the King Cake season, though the grocery stores put them out around New Years Day.
YUM!! There are a million varieties of King Cakes today, we live in the true renaissance era of King Cakes. Here’s a fancy King Cake recipe from star chef Emeril Lagasse. When I first moved to New Orleans in the mid 1970s, the only type of King Cake was plain ones. Then McKenzie’s Bakeries, a local chain, produced the first filled King Cakes. Now, you can find almost any flavor possible. McKenzie’s is long gone, but their unique innovation lives on and on!
As for the PPP, or Phunny Phorty Phellows, their ride down St. Charles Avenue on a St.Charles Avenue Street Car occurs tonight.
From the PPP website: The modern organization was revived in 1981 by a small group of friends and Mardi Gras enthusiasts. It has continued without interruption to the present day. The PPP paraded with the Krewe of Clones from 1981 until 1986. In 1982 we also began a tradition of riding the streetcar line (in a streetcar) and proclaiming the arrival of the Carnival season on Twelfth Night. That is the night when the new Boss and Queen are chosen by the traditional King Cake method as well as the occasion of the sumptuous Coronation Ball. A “Carnival Countdown” take place right before the Phellows board the streetcar.
The Storyville Stompers is the official band for the Streetcar Ride and Benny Grunch and the Bunch play at the Coronation Ball.
Other innovations and features: Beautiful invitations and dance cards like 1800s by a series of royal artists: Beth Kesmodel, Hal Pluche, Jeanne Woods, Arthur Nead, and Kevin Barre.
My own Krewe of Underwear, part of the historic Krewe du Vieux, roll January 19, which is very exciting and probably a very cold evening. I’ll have to bundle up big time before rolling. I love the brass bands, the donkeys, the heavy ribald satire, and the route- we roll through the French Quarter and the Faubourg Marigny. There is no better place to be January 19 than at our parade or in it. Happy Mardi Gras to the World!!! Here’s our route-
I bought two King Cakes in the last 24 hours, both strawberry, one from Rouses and one from Winn Dixie this AM for the wife’s work. Both grocery chains make their own King Cakes by the thousands during the season. The small filled King Cake sells for $7.69-7.79 at the two stores. Unfilled small King Cakes retail for around $5.59 or so.
King Cakes are HUGE in New Orleans. From January 6 until Mardi Gras Day, March 8, 2011- this is a very late date, almost the latest date possible. The weather should be warm for Fat Tuesday 2011. This allows for over 2 months from January 6 until March 8. All this time is King Cake time!! NOLA King Cakes feature more sugar than most.
Historically, King Cakes have been around Europe for centuries before New Orleans was settled. We had plain King Cakes for a long long time in NOLA. Then McKenzie’s Bakeries started filling their King Cakes, and charged like $9.95 for a Medium filled one. This was back in late 1970s as I recall.
Pretty soon, filled King Cakes had created a whole new King Cake Economic Model, based on a more expensive King Cake. Then the Mail Order Model was created, and hundreds of thousands of King Cakes started being shipped worldwide.
Who makes the best filled and unfilled King Cakes in the NOLA metro area? There are a lot of entrants, since the shipping/local markets have exploded over the last
http://bit.ly/emh7cl is a King Cakes of the World article I found while researching this post. The blog is entitled- A Malaysian in France. Here’s an European King Cake:
Tonight the Phunny Phorty Phellows take a decorated, historic St. Charles Streetcar down St. Charles Avenue from the Willow Street Car Barn onto Carrollton Avenue then down St. Charles to Lee Circle, where the Streetcar turns down Carondelet Street to Canal Street, turning on Canal to St. Charles Avenue, all the way back to Carrollton Avenue and the Willow Street Car Barn. They are accompanied by New Orleans own Storyville Stompers.
I’m a huge fan of the PPP, as they have a creative solution to float building. They take an already build historic street car, and decorate that! I’ve caught them for years on St. Charles. Cannot wait to catch them tonight. Happy Mardi Gras to the World! Go Saints! Who Dat Who Dat Who Dat!!!
Why all the Who Dats? Saints play their first playoff game defending their World Championship Win this Saturday against the Seattle Sea Hawks- Jan 8, 2011. Sat 1:30 PM, Seattle,WA Qwest Field
I’ve loved King Cakes for many years. Over the decades, I’ve preferred various types as they are developed.
I’m pretty excited about this Carnival Season. I’ve always loved Carnival since moving to New Orleans in 1975. I have a great location. Three blocks from Prytania, where most parades line up, and 4 blocks from St. Charles Avenue, where all the uptown parades roll. It’s my second Mardi Gras in this location.
I’m working on my menu and costume for Mardi Gras Day. Spinach and ham & cheese mini quiches for breakfast. Pulled pork sandwiches, fresh shrimp salad, fruit salad, and fresh potato salad for lunch. I’m thinking of King Cake, mandel brot, and either apple pie or pecan pie for dessert.
This is the first Mardi Gras that the wife has her own scooter. We bought it for Jazz Fest, but she’ll be traveling to the parades in her scooter, which is way way cool.
The uptown parade schedule is more skewed as ever. Saturday, February 14 has three parades uptown- Ponchartrain at 2, Sparta at 6, and Pegasus at 6:45. But Sunday, February 15 has only two uptown parades all day and evening: Carrollton at noon and King Arthur at 1:15. Where’s the evening parade?
The next parade is Wednesday, February 18. Thursday brings three parades : Babylon at 5:45, Muses at 6:15, and Chaos at 6:30. That’s a very long weekday night! Friday the 20th has three parades: Hermes at 6, d’Etat, also at 6, and Morpheus at 7. Saturday has Iris at 11 and Tucks at 12:15, with Endymion rolling through mid city at 5:45.
Sunday, February 22 is the only all day event uptown. Just a few years ago, the two Carnival weekends were just about filled morning through night with parades. Okeanos rolls at 11, Mid-City at 11:45, Thoth at noon. Bacchus rolls at 5:15. To many people on St. Charles Avenue, Bacchus Sunday is a bigger deal than Mardi Gras Day. It starts in the morning, and ends well into the evening. On Mardi Gras day, the day starts early, but ends by mid afternoon when the last truck float passes. Bacchus Sunday is considerably longer than Mardi Gras Day.