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Every year in New Orleans for Mardi Gras people celebrate on Fat Tuesday with a King Cake, which is a traditional yeast dough cake filled with a creamy cinnamon filling. It’s like a giant cinnamon roll ring! The best part of King Cake is that the baker hides a surprise on the inside of the cake for one lucky eater to find! Traditionally, the baker hides  a small plastic baby in the cake, but some use a dried bean or cashew instead. When you find the baby, it means  you are king or queen for the day but you also have to host the King Cake party the following year!

Prep time: 2 hours

Total time: 20 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

8 oz Tillamook Natural Sour Cream
¼ cup sugar
2 tablespoon Tillamook Unsalted Butter
¹⁄₂ tsp salt
1 (¹⁄₄ oz) packet active dry yeast
¼ cup warm water
1 egg
3 cup all-purpose flour
4 ounces cream cheese
¹⁄₃ cup dark brown sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup powdered sugar
Yellow, green and purple sprinkles

1. In a sauce pan over medium heat, combine the sour cream, sugar, butter and salt. Cook until all of the butter has melted and the mixture is just warm. Remove from heat.

2. In a mixer bowl, combine the yeast and warm water. Whisk together and let sit for 5 minutes. Then, add the sour cream mixture, egg and 1 cup of flour. Mix to combine then gradually add in the remaining flour.

3. When the dough has fully come together, this should take about 2 minutes of mixing, transfer it to a floured work surface and knead the dough for 10 minutes. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover with a dish towel and set it in a warm spot to rise for at least 1 hour.

4. While the dough rises, beat together the cream cheese, brown sugar and cinnamon in a mixer bowl until light and fluffy.

5. Once the dough has at least doubled in size, transfer back to the floured surface and punch it down, then roll it out into a 22 by 12 inch rectangle.

6. Spread a thin layer of the cream cheese mixture over the entire surface of the dough. Place a traditional Mardi Gras plastic baby in the middle of the dough, then roll it up length wise to create a long dough cylinder.

7. Transfer the dough to a greased baking sheet seam side down, and pinch the edges together to create a ring. Let the dough rise for another 20 minutes.

8. Pre heat the oven to 375 degrees. Once the dough has almost doubled in size, place it in the oven to bake for 16 to 20 minutes or until the outside is golden brown.

9. Transfer the cake to a wire rack to cool.

10. Put the powdered sugar in a bowl and whisk in 1 tablespoon of water at a time with a fork until it reaches the desired glaze thickness. Pour the glaze evenly on to the completely cooled cake.

11. Add the sprinkles to the top of the cake, alternating between colors all the way around.

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