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Happy Mardi Gras & Fat Tuesday! Boy do I wish I was in New Orleans today enjoying the festivities and my favorite part, the FOOD. But for those of you who don’t know what the hustle & bustle is about today, I’m here to share with you. From the origins, to the traditions, and ultimately the food; after you’re done reading this blog post you’ll be a Mardi Gras expert and in need of a King Cake.

What is Mardi Gras?

Mardi Gras also called Shrove Tuesday,or Fat Tuesday,in English, refers to events of the Carnival celebrations, beginning on or after the Christian feasts of the Epiphany (Three Kings Day) and culminating on the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras is French for “Fat Tuesday”, reflecting the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season.

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Mardi Gras Traditions

Beads

It is believed that Mardi Gras parades began in New Orleans sometime around the 1830’s. … During the late 1800’s, inexpensive necklaces made of glass beads began to be tossed into the crowds by the parade krewes. The beads were an instant hit among the crowds of New Orleans residents and visiting Mardi Gras tourists.

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Flambeaux

When you watch any evening Mardi Gras parade, you’re bound to notice the literal torch-bearers of Carnival: the flambeaux performers. This tradition dates back to the early days of parades, when the torches were needed to light the way for the floats.

Many of the krewes keep this tradition going, though the torches themselves have been upgraded from the original wooden torches wrapped with lit pine-tar rags. It is customary to offer monetary tips to the flambeaux carriers if you enjoy their performance.

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Mardi Gras Food

King Cake

By far the most delicious of New Orleans’ Mardi Gras traditions is the King Cake. Between Twelfth Night and Fat Tuesday, you can find king cakes lining the walls of local grocery stores.

Traditionally, a New Orleans king cake is an oval shaped coffee cake, braided and covered in icing and sugar the color of Mardi Gras: purple, green and gold. A small plastic baby accompanies each king cake (Due to choking hazards, most king cakes now come with the baby on the outside, allowing the buyer to place it inside of the cake). King cake custom demands that whoever cuts the slice of cake that has the baby in it is king for the day — and also has to purchase the next king cake.

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Crawfish

Being that New Orleans is the lucky spot in which these delicious mudbugs thrive, it’s no wonder people eat these by the pound during this massive celebration!mardi5So there you have it! You are now a Mardi Gras expert. Please share this blog with your friends and family so they too can join in and celebrate what today is all about!

Your Realtor and Friend for Life! Kathy

 

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