Sprinkles To Monkey Cakes To Elegant, And Turkey

The New York Times with ‘The Funfetti Explosion’ all about the wonderfulness of sprinkle cakes — truly, it’s appropriate to push aside whatever food snobbery one has when it comes to these tiny capsules of joy. In fact, the article ends with “It tastes like a vanilla cake, but it looks like a happy childhood.”

One year when we were in Houston for Shug’s birthday, we stopped by Fluff Bake Bar (remember Rebecca Masson from Top Chef Just Desserts? this is her shop.) to get their little birthday cake in a cup
Fluff Bake Bar Birthday Cake//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

This summer in Jackson, La Brioche Patisserie was featuring their sprinkle birthday cake with macarons:

In our family, we usually like to get a doberge from Gambino’s
Av's Birthday Cake//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

although Shugie’s first birthday cake was a baked Alaska at Antoine’s
Shug's First Birthday Cake, Baked Alaska at Antoine's, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

What got me thinking about cakes, though, are the cakes we saw at our last visit to Dong Phuong in New Orleans East. It’s not only a great restaurant, but a fabulous bakery that is known all over (their king cakes are especially in high demand — sold in-season by our friends at Pizza Nola and will be available again on January 6). Meat pies – pate chaud / tapioca layered cake / banh deo la dua / croissant / steamed bun…
Dong Phuong, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Croissant, Dong Phuong Bakery, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

…and the cakes — piggy, horse, and monkey (also sitting up monkey with friend and happy monkey alone) today, but you can also special order, in which the decorator shows her style which is more unique than the typical bakery: puppy, dragonbirthday, father’s day, and other occasions.
Dong Phuong, New Orleans LA

After watching this video, at 1:37, one can see the similarity to the cakes at ABC Bakery in Ho Chi Minh City.

One of my favorite cakes is this one from a bakery that has since closed in Birmingham:

this is one of my more popular pics on Flickr, from another closed bakery

…and since Thanksgiving is coming up, this from our visit to Francois Payard Patisserie in Las Vegas

Bye Purloo, Baby Lane Cakes, And Confectionary Mullet.

The restaurant under SOFAB‘s (Southern Food and Beverage Museum) roof in New Orleans has just closed in the last few days. It’s Purloo, and that’s a shame because our lunch there earlier was pretty great. Wish I had posted this just after our visit, but perhaps I can refer back to it when they reopen in their new location.

Purloo isn’t a dish associated with the city, but the restaurant positions itself as one cooking the broad flavors of the south.

We sat at the bar at the open kitchen
Purloo, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Purloo, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Listed as more of an app, I had the Southern Board as my entree — pimento cheese, smoked lamb, green tomato chutney, fried pickles, crackers, deviled eggs meuniere
Purloo, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

…and boiled peanuts
Purloo, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

I love those kind of little picnic selections when they’re offered, like this one I had at Hominy Grill in Charleston, and this one at Root in New Orleans.

Av had the pan-seared Gulf drum with artichoke barigoule and fried pickles. Not sure fried pickles really made sense in this dish. Everything else was good; the fish was cooked perfectly.
Purloo, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Dessert was incredible — Av had this chocolate selection

and I had the little individual “Alabama lane cakes” with bourbon-soaked pecans, raisins, coconut, chocolate sauce, and coconut ice cream
Purloo, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

You know I was in love because I got to talk Lane cake history with the pastry chef.
Purloo, New Orleans LA//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js

Purloo closed a few days ago and announced plans to open elsewhere later, but no details were given.

Gov Bentley signed Lane cake in as Alabama’s official state dessert in April. This news article from today mentions that Jimmy Carter named Lane cake as his favorite, and that it was served in his home when he was growing up.

I haven’t had one yet, but The Cakerie in Birmingham makes Lane cakes upon order. Their FB page has more examples of the custom cakes they’re making, and this one is pretty funny. As they put it, “Fancy in the front. Party in the back.”