Mardi Gras King Cake

OH MY GOODNESS! How could I do all these Mardi Gras posts with a Mardi Gras King Cake recipe?!

Mardi Gras King Cake

King Cake– the preferred dessert/snack of Mardi Gras.  It wouldn’t be Carnival without one.  From the Twelfth Night (January 6) to Fat Tuesday (date varies) King Cakes are baked and gobbled up all over New Orleans. Although the name implies cake, it is essentially a sweetened, enriched bread dough similar to a brioche.  Think coffee cake (yes, you can eat it for breakfast, too, MMMM). They are glazed with a simple confectioners’ sugar mixture, then colored sugar or crystals in Mardi Gras colors crown the top; purple for justice, green for faith, and gold for power. Nowadays there are other versions filled with cream cheese, praline, and even one with a coconut filling and chocolate icing–yum!


makes one 12-inch oval cake
For the Dough
  • 1/2 cup coconut or almond milk
  • 2 Tablespoons (1 ounce) unsalted vegan butter (Earth Balance)
  • 1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 extra large egg
  • 1 extra large egg yolk
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 3 cups unbleached all-purpose gluten free flour
For the Filling
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose gluten free flour
  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted vegan butter, melted (Earth Balance)
For the Icing and Decoration
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 2 tablespoons coconut milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Colored sugar crystals (Mardi Gras colors of course!)
  1. For the Dough: In a small saucepan over medium heat, heat the milk until bubbles appear around the edges.  Add the butter and set aside to cool to room temperature.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, dissolve the yeast in the warm water with 1 tablespoon of the sugar.  Let stand until bubbled and frothy, about 10 minutes.  Add the cooled milk mixture, the eggs, remaining sugar, vanilla, salt, and nutmeg.  With the mixer on low, knead in the flour one cup at a time.  Increase the speed to medium-high and knead until smooth, about 5-7 minutes.
  3. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead into a ball.  Spray a large bowl with non-stick spray, cover with a sheet of plastic wrap, and place in a warm, draft free place until doubled in volume, about 60-90 minutes.
  4. For the Filling: In a medium bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon and flour.  Pour in the melted butter and mix until a paste forms; set aside. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
  5. When the dough has risen, transfer it to a lightly floured surface.  Roll the dough into a 10×24-inch rectangle.  Spread the filling (it won’t be smooth and even) over the dough.  Starting with the widest end, roll up the dough into a jelly roll, pinching the seems well.  Bring the ends together to form an oval, pinching the end seams, as well.  Place the oval onto the prepared baking sheet.  Cover with a damp cloth and allow to rise in a warm draft free place until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375° F.  Bake the cake for 30 minutes, tenting with a sheet of foil the last 10 minutes if it appears to be browning too quickly.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  7. For the Icing and Decoration: In a medium bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar, milk, corn syrup, and vanilla until smooth.  Place the cake (still on the rack) over a rimmed baking sheet. Pour the icing over the top of the cake, letting it drip down the sides.  Sprinkle with the sugar crystals, alternating colors as you go.  Allow the icing to set before slicing.


Kwegyirba Croffie is a freelance Associate Producer at News 12 Connecticut and a Special Events/Event Planning and Social Media Intern at College Lifestyles (TM). She is a Quinnipiac University alumni and a sister of Alpha Delta Pi. She enjoy cupcakes,Broadway musicals, Forever 21 ,giraffes, peacock feathers, orchids, lillies and anything Disney.


Taste of New Orleans: Sand Between My Toes

Last installment of the taste of New Orleans Mardi Gras drinks. These drinks are excellent for that perfect beach day. I need to move somewhere there is no snow and always sand between my toes!

Bahama Mama 

Coconut rum and pineapple juice are featured in this slushy drink.

Makes 4


  • 1/4 cup rum
  • 1/4 cup coconut-flavored rum
  • 1/4 cup grenadine syrup
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice
  • 4 cups crushed ice
  • pineapple slices for garnish
  1. Combine regular rum, rum with coconut flavoring, grenadine, orange juice, pineapple juice and crushed ice in an electric blender.
  2. Blend until the drink’s consistency is slushy.
  3. Pour in glasses and garnish with some pineapple slices.

Bourbon Slush

A fruity blend of juices, tea and bourbon whiskey are frozen into a slush, and then served topped off with lemon lime soda. This is a two day drink so plan ahead!


  • 1 (6 ounce) can frozen orange juice concentrate
  • 1 (12 ounce) can frozen lemonade concentrate
  • 1 (46 fluid ounce) can pineapple juice
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2 cups strong brewed black tea
  • 2 cups bourbon whiskey (Bourbon – Makers Mark is a gluten free bourbon)
  • 1 (2 liter) bottle lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage
  1. In a large bowl or container, mix together the orange juice concentrate, lemonade concentrate, pineapple juice, sugar, tea, and whiskey. Transfer to shallow bowls or dishes, and freeze overnight.
  2. Remove the frozen mixture from the freezer and let stand for about 10 minutes. Chop with a wire whisk or potato masher to make a slushy consistency. Place scoops of the frozen slush into glasses, and top off with the lemon-lime flavored soda.



Kwegyirba Croffie is a freelance Associate Producer at News 12 Connecticut and a Special Events/Event Planning and Social Media Intern at College Lifestyles (TM). She is a Quinnipiac University alumni and a sister of Alpha Delta Pi. She enjoy cupcakes,Broadway musicals, Forever 21 ,giraffes, peacock feathers, orchids, lillies and anything Disney.

Taste of New Orleans: Lava Lamps

Want a great drink that is interactive? How about a drink that looks like a lava lamp?

Lava Lamps 

Is it lava? Jell-O? Fruit?! What is is! 


  • 1 (3 ounce) package red or blue colored instant gelatin mix
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 cup vodka
    • Potato: Chopin, Teton Glacier, Monopolowa, Vikingfjord, Luksosowa
    • Grape: Cîroc, Bombora
  • 1 (750 milliliter) bottle champagne
  1. In a medium bowl, stir together the gelatin mix and boiling water until completely dissolved, about 2 minutes. Stir in vodka. Pour the liquid into small paper cups or portion cups. Chill until set, at least 2 hours.
  2. Pour champagne into glasses. Break up the gelatin with a fork, and pour into a glass of champagne. A little stir gives it some ‘lava’ action. Drink with caution, these will sneak up on you.

Taste of New Orleans: Lounging Around

Yep! Two more! A refreshing mojito and something a little different.

Mojito Cocktail

Refreshing and different.


  • 8 leaves fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup simple syrup
  • 8 cubes ice
  • 1/2 cup and 2 tablespoons rum
  • 1/2 cup carbonated water
  • 4 sprigs fresh mint
  1. In a cocktail glass, muddle (crush) mint leaves with simple syrup.
  2. Add ice and rum.
  3. Top with carbonated water.
  4. Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint.

Now something a little different!

Red Rooster 

Also known as a Madras.


  • 1 cup ice cubes
  • 2 fluid ounces potato or grape vodka. (Potato would be best for this particular cocktail)
    • Potato: Chopin, Teton Glacier, Monopolowa, Vikingfjord, Luksosowa
    • Grape: Cîroc, Bombora
  • 4 fluid ounces cranberry juice
  • 1/2 fluid ounce orange juice
  1. Fill a tall glass with ice.
  2. Pour in vodka.
  3. Fill glass to 3/4 full with cranberry juice.
  4. Top with orange juice.
  5. Stir.


Taste of New Orleans: Seashore

Are you ready for two more cocktails? Red Snapper II and a Mai Tai!

Red Snapper II 

Straight from the French Quarter. 


  • 1 fluid ounce amaretto liqueur
  • 1 fluid ounce cranberry juice
  • 1 cup ice cubes
  1. Place the amaretto, and cranberry juice into a shaker with ice.
  2. Shake, then strain into shot glasses.

The Perfect Mai Tai

A very tropical treat


  • 1/4 cup light rum
  • 2 tablespoons dark rum
  • 2 tablespoons 151 proof rum
  • 2 tablespoons orange curacao (orange flavored liqueur)
  • 2 tablespoons almond flavored syrup
  • 2 tablespoons simple syrup
  • 1-1/4 limes, juiced
  • 1 cup fresh orange juice
  1. In a large jar or drink cooler, combine the light rum, dark rum, 151 rum, orange liqueur, almond syrup, simple syrup, and lime juice.
  2. Stir and top off with orange juice.
  3. Do not use grenadine if you want the true Mai Tai!
  4. Serve in 8 to 12 ounce glasses with ice.


More to come!

Taste of New Orleans: New Orleans Hurricane

Here comes the Top 10 Mardi Gras Cocktails!! I’ll do them in pairs. 4 more posts to go! 😀

Get a taste of the Big Easy with these favorite refreshers.
New Orleans Hurricane 

The classic Mardi Gras cocktail–serve in Hurricane glasses.


  • 2 cups ice
  • 1 cup light rum (Malibu is my favorite and super versatile)
  • 1 cup passion fruit flavored syrup
  • 4 cups lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage (Sprite and 7-Up work the best)
  • 1/4 pound lime juice
  • 1/2 cup 151 proof rum
  1. In a shaker, combine ice, light rum, passion fruit syrup, lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage and lime juice.
  2. Shake well and pour mixture into a Hurricane or other large specialty glass.
  3. Float the 151 proof rum on top of the drink.




Storm of the Century Hurricane

A Hurricane with a twist. – This twist DOES have vodka. Make sure you use a potato or grape vodka 


  • 2 cups ice cubes
  • 1/4 cup light rum
  • 1/4 cup dark rum
  • 1/4 cup coconut rum
  • 1/4 cup vodka
    • Potato: Chopin, Teton Glacier, Monopolowa, Vikingfjord, Luksosowa
    • Grape: Cîroc, Bombora
  • 1/4 cup gin
  • 1/4 cup Chambord (raspberry liqueur)
  • 1/4 cup triple sec liqueur
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • orange slices for garnish
  • maraschino cherry for garnish
  1. Fill a hurricane glass with ice.
  2. Add light rum, dark rum, coconut rum, vodka, gin, raspberry liqueur, triple sec and orange juice.
  3. Shake gently, and garnish with orange slices and a cherry, if desired. Beverage will be about the color of a pink grapefruit.

Ready for some more!! Stay tuned!!


Blood Orange Margaritas

Blood Orange Margaritas


makes a single serving

  • 1 1/2 ounces tequila (silver or gold, based on your preference)
  • 1 ounce grand mariner
  • 1 1/2 ounces simple syrup
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1 1/2 ounces blood orange juice (about 1-2 oranges)
  • salt and/or sugar for the rim
  • lime/orange wedges for garnish
  1. Rim the ridge of your glass with a lime wedge and dip in margarita salt.(You can combined the salt with some sugar, but that’s up to you.)
  2. Fill the glass with ice.
  3. In a cocktail shaker, combine tequila, grand marnier, simple syrup, blood orange and lime juice with ice, and shake for about 30 seconds.
  4. Pour over ice and squeeze in lemon and orange slices.