At least one French-style king cakes has to have a place at the table during Mardi Gras. The puff pastry makes these as lovely to look at as to eat.
3501 Hessmer, Metairie, 504.885.1526
951 W. Napoleon St., Metairie, 504.455.0830
Where better to try our first French-style king cake of the Carnival season than at these bakeries owned by Jean-Luc Albin, who was born in France. The round Galette des rois made with puff pastry are decorated with a cutout fleur-de-lis and baked to golden brown. The shiny, crispy, puffed-up crust holds the not-too-sweet frangipane, and slices so beautifully. And, it travels quite well! (While these may be the cake of choice in France, tradition dictates that we always complement this one with a purple, green and gold New Orleans king cake at every party. Maurice's sells traditional cakes as well as several other specialty filled cakes, such as bananas Foster, Bavarian cream with fresh strawberries and two adult-flavored cakes with Kentucky Bourbon and Southern Comfort.) The bakery won People's Choice Award the Ochsner King Cake Festival in 2015 and 2016.
Type: French-pastry king cake.
Baby: Randomly selected ceramic tokens (ours was a tiny lamb) are placed outside the cakes.
My dyed-in-wool New Orleanian brother, John, said it: "It's delicious, but it's not a (New Orleans) king cake."
Price: French cakes are $17.50 for 8-inch, $27 for 10-inch, $42.50 for 12-inch, $59 16-inch. Medium traditional plain: $23, filled: $29.50.
Lagniappe: The 8-inch cakes are available all the time. For the larger cakes, it is best to order the day before. If you want to make an impression, order the 16-incher. It serves about 30 people. Oh, check out the other pastries there, particularly the many flavors of doberge cake.
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