½largeegg (beat an egg in a small bowl and separate into two bowls--half is for filling and the other half will be for an egg wash)
1½cups (180g)powdered sugar
colored sanding sugar
Make the dough according to recipe instructions and allow to bulk proof and then chill overnight. Knead dough on well-floured surface and divide in half. Wrap one half in plastic wrap or place back in bowl covered with plastic wrap and refrigerate for another use.
Make your choice of filling by beating the cream cheese with the rest of the ingredients. It's okay if there are still a little lumps in the cream cheese mixture.
FOR BUNDT PAN METHOD:
Roll out dough into a rectangle that is about ¼-inch thick, 14 by 12 inches. Spread with softened butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Spoon cream cheese mixture onto the bottom ⅓ of the rectangle (the one closest to you). Carefully lift the dough up and over the cream cheese mixture. It will be messy, but just go with it. Press the dough with your fingers to create somewhat of a seam to hold the cream cheese mixture in. Continue to roll to the opposite end.
Taking two spatulas or cake lifters (even two pieces of cardboard would work), lift each edge of the roll up and carefully place the log into a well-greased Bundt pan (or onto a parchment-lined baking sheet). Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm, draft-free area for about one hour, or until doubled in size.
FOR BRAID METHOD
cut the dough in half lengthwise to create two 14 by 6-inch pieces. Spread praline pecan filling over each to within ½-inch of the long edges. Roll up each piece like you would a cinnamon roll or jelly roll. Pinch bottom together to seal and place on parchment-lined baking sheet. Braid the two pieces together. It's okay if some of the filling begins showing through. Curve the braid into a wreath shape, pinching the ends to seal together. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm, draft-free area until nearly doubled in size, 30 minutes to an hour (or longer if your kitchen is cold).
Brush the risen king cake with the leftover beaten egg.
Preheat oven to 350° F and bake either king cake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown.
If you made your king cake in a Bundt pan, cool for about 10 minutes before loosening with a blunt knife around the edges. Place serving platter over top of Bundt pan and, holding both firmly, flip over onto serving platter.
Mix glaze ingredients together and dollop over top of the cake. Spread as necessary with an angled spatula. Sprinkle with colored decorating sugar and serve warm.
SERVE AND STORE
King cake is best served the day it's made, but can be kept covered in the refrigerator for a few days. Reheat before serving. (Reheats nicely in the microwave at 20-30 seconds). If making any other variation that doesn't use cream cheese filling, it may be kept at room temperature.
The colors of Mardi Gras are purple, green, and gold. You can certainly buy the sugars online or at a craft store, but I made my own. Place about 2-4 tbsp of sugar into each of 3 separate small bowls. Add a small amount of paste or gel food coloring into each and press with the back of a spoon to distribute color into sugar.Fillings can be interchanged with shaping and baking methods.
Keyword Gluten Free, gluten free king cake, king cake, mardi gras