Cause when it’s carnival time, everybody’s having fun!
It’s time for Mardi Gras celebrations. From the time I was a little girl growing up in Houma, I loved the ‘pawade,’ but more importantly I loved King Cake. Real, good bakery King Cake, not the ‘dried store bought’ versions of King Cake, but more the ‘creamier bakery’ versions.
As I grew up, and while my love for King Cake continued, I didn’t love all the carbs from the bread. My goal was not to create a low-fat cinnamon roll (can we just say DRY!), but to create a dish embracing my memories of the creamery bakery favorites.
After a few flops of working to create a ‘skinnier’ version of one of my favorite treats, I created a very flavor-rich dish combining the delicious flavors of a traditional King Cake with the creaminess of bread pudding. I simply reduced the sugar in both the cake and toppings, and while I used bread – remember – this is Mardi Gras!
Yield: 12 Servings
- 1 French bread loaf, cut into pieces
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup of Egg beaters
- 2 cups of fat-free half and half
- 2 cups of 2% milk
- 1½ cups of sugar
- 1 teaspoon of almond extract
- 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract
- Glaze, recipe follows
- Mardi Gras Sugars, recipe follows
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Place bread pieces into 9 x 12 baking pan.
- In a large bowl, combine eggs, egg beaters, half and half, milk, sugar, almond extract, and vanilla extract. Whisk until blended.
- Gently pour mixture over bread.
- Let bread mixture sit 30 minutes while pressing bread into milk mixture.
- Place pan in oven.
- Cook for 30-40 minutes or until mixture is set in center.
- Cool slightly and top with Glaze and Mardi Gras Sugars.
- ¾ cup confectioners’ sugar
- 4 tablespoons 2% milk
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
1. Mix sugar, milk, and almond extract in a bowl.
Mardi Gras Sugars
- 6 tablespoons of white sugar, divided
- Yellow food coloring
- Green food coloring
- Purple food coloring
1. Place 2 tablespoons of sugar in sealable plastic bags.
2. Add 1-2 drops of yellow food coloring into one bag, seal, and shake to combine.
3. Add 1-2 drops of green food coloring into a second bag, seal, and shake to combine.
4. Add 1-2 drops of purple food coloring into a third bag, seal, and shake to combine.