New Orleanians love their desserts (Bananas Foster, anyone?), and Mardi Gras is the perfect time to load up on one of our favorites, king cake! These ubiquitous pastries can be found all over the crescent city in the first few weeks of the year as they are a required part of any Mardi Gras celebration. The traditional king cake is a circular cinnamon roll topped with purple, gold, and green icing, the three colors of Mardi Gras–which represent justice, power, and faith, respectively–but there are many varieties that can be found around town, including cream cheese or fruit filled cakes, single serving cakes, like the one offered by La Louisiane, and even a peanut butter, marshmallow, and bacon concoction cooked up by Cochon! Some purveyors have gotten so creative as to liquify their cakes; local coffe house, PJ’s Coffee, offers a king cake coffee blend available through Mardi Gras, and you can even find king cake flavored vodka. But no matter how creative the bakers in New Orleans get, there is one thing that always remains the same: the baby. Every king cake comes with a plastic baby which must be inserted into the cake before serving. Whoever is lucky enough to get the slice with the baby is in charge of bringing the next cake!