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Pull-Apart Biscuit King Cake

This cake is cinnamon sugar biscuit slices, baked to golden, made Mardi Gras festive and served warm.

I find this cake is best served the day it is made. Feel free to make the dough and assemble the cake in the loaf pan up to 12 hours before baking. Preheat the oven and bake from chilled (if the cake has been refrigerated it may need a few extra minutes in the oven). Drizzle with glaze and sanding sugar and serve just warm.

Ingredients

Scale

For the Biscuit Dough:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup cold buttermilk

For the Filling:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

For the Topping:

  • yellow, green, and purple sanding sugar
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar mixed with a few teaspoons of milk or water for glaze

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Using your fingers, quickly work the butter into the dry ingredients until some bits of butter are the size of oat flakes, some the size of small peas. Chunks of cold butter is what we want in our dough.
  2. In a small bowl or liquid measuring cup, combine egg and buttermilk and beat lightly with a fork.
  3. Create a well in the center of the flour mixture and add the egg mixture all at once. Stir into a shaggy mixture. The dough will be moist, but not overly wet.
  4. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured board and use a floured rolling pin to gently roll the dough into a into a 1-inch thick oval. At the short end of the dough closest to you, fold the dough over until the edge of the dough meets the center of the dough. Fold the top edge of the dough towards the center over the first fold. Gently roll the dough into a 1-inch oval and wrap the dough in plastic wrap or waxed paper and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  5. Lightly grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray. Line the loaf pan lengthwise and heightwise, leaving a few inches of paper overhang in order to easily pull the baked cake from the pan.
  6. On a lightly floured counter, roll biscuit dough to just under 1/2-inch thick rectangle. The dough will be about 13×14-inches in shape. Lightly trim the ragged edges but don’t worry too much, the edges don’t have to be perfectly smooth. Slice the dough into approximately 4 1/2 x 2 1/2 – inch rectangles.
  7. Brush the dough with melted butter. In a small bowl mix together sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle the mixture generously across every bit of the biscuit dough. Stack four or five dough pieces atop one another. Stack all of the dough in little packs. Gently place the packs of dough, long side down in the prepared pan. No need to press the dough together. It should ruffle in the pan a little and will bake together and rise slightly in the oven.
  8. Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Allow the dough to chill in the refrigerator while the oven preheats. The cake can chill in the refrigerator up to an hour before baking.
  9. Bake for 18-25 minutes or until golden brown on top and bubbling. Remove from the pan and allow to rest for 20 minutes before drizzling with glaze and topping with the colorful sugar. Serve slightly warm. This cake is best the day it’s made.

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