I love everything southern – from the SEC to Sweet Tea; so of course we love Mardi Gras which is French for “Fat Tuesday”. New Orleans is the Mardi Gras capital here in the U.S., but it is actually a French tradition. Mardi Gras season actually starts on January 6th (on Epiphany) and ends on Lent. The idea behind the season is to eat rich, fatty foods before fasting for Lent and to partake in celebrations and parades.
We usually celebrate Mardi Gras with homemade Jambalaya and homemade King Cake. However, I found a less time consuming version of King Cake you can make with your kids and they have a blast being able to do most of it themselves. Traditional King Cake is a half day process between making the batter and letting it rise.
Simple King Cake
For the simple version we use cinnamon roll dough from a can!
- You take the dough out of the can and separate the rolls.
- Then take each roll and divide the sections into 2.
- Braid the sections and form into a circle.
- Bake in the oven at 375 for 10-12 minutes.
Once they have cooled – you can add the icing and make sure to add the traditional yellow, green, and purple sprinkles.
If you want to keep with tradition, you can also pop a little baby, who is to represent Baby Jesus into one of the mini King Cakes – whoever gets it, will be blessed with luck and prosperity. According to tradition- that person is also responsible for throwing next year’s celebration.
We also made masks and colorful water bottles filled with rice to make noise makers. The boys have fun parading around the house with their Mardi Gras gear.
Do you have any Mardi Gras traditions with your family?