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All About King's Cake; Would You Eat Caffeinated Jelly Beans?

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Five things you need to know today.

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It's Wednesday, January 6, and the day each year when Christians across the world celebrate Epiphany. Read on for more about the best part of this international holiday (hint: it's cake). In non-cake-related news, our colleagues at the Verge are at CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas this week and there are some... novel food-related gadgets on display, including a smart fridge equipped to reorder groceries via a touchscreen on its door.

In restaurant news, there's some cross-country action happening between Chicago and New York and separately between New York and Austin. Also: LA-based Roy Choi and Daniel Patterson's highly anticipated fast food concept LocoL has an opening date.

Finally, some industry news about the growth in popularity of meal delivery kits, and why Jelly Belly's creator started a Kickstarter.


Happy King Cake Day

Today is King's Cake (or King Cake) Day, otherwise known to some as the holiday Epiphany. What you need to know: Bakeries all over New Orleans, plus almost every French or Latin American bakery in the U.S., are selling a special cake this week. In New Orleans, King Cake is a large, cinnamon roll-like twisted pastry round decorated with green and purple sugar in honor of Mardi Gras. In Latin America, Roscas de reyes are generally decorated with candied fruit and sugar. In France, Galettes des rois are a pastry disc filled with almond cream. Snag a slice or a whole cake this week. They're all excellent, just don't choke on the tiny baby Jesus figurine hidden inside.

Image credit: Flickr


Cross Country Restaurant News

Rumor has it Chicago's nationally renowned burger institution Au Cheval— which draws lines even in subzero temperatures — may be opening a location in New York City. Eater NY reports restaurateur Brendan Sodikoff and his Hogsalt group have applied for a liquor license and business transfer in the West Village. In other crucial restaurant news, chefs Daniel Patterson and Roy Choi confirmed they'd open the first location of their fast food concept LocoL on January 18 in LA. Choi is also opening the first stand-alone, not on wheels, Kogi taco outpost this month in LA. Pizza merge: NYC's Roberta's hits Austin later this month when it pops up at local favorite pizzeria Bufalina; Bufalina is also opening a second outpost this month called Bufalina Due.

Image credit: Nick Fochtman/Eater Chicago


The Big Business of Meal Delivery Kits

Meal delivery kits — such as Blue Apron and Hello Fresh — are a billion dollar business, according to a new study, and fresh food subscriptions are expected to be a $10 billion business by 2020.

Image credit: Blue Apron


Would You Eat Caffeinated Jelly Beans?

Jelly Belly creator David Klein sold the rights to his hit candy invention in 1980 for a reported $4.8 million, but this week he admitted to the Chicago Tribune that it was the biggest mistake of his life. Now Klein is staging a crowd-funded comeback for caffeinated jelly beans called "Original Coffee House Jelly Beans." The campaign on Kickstarter is asking for $10,000; in one day Klein has raised just over $1,000. Will he meet his goal? Do people want caffeinated jelly beans? Perhaps yes, if this candy contains the same beneficial ingredients as a good ol' cup of joe.

Image credit: Wikipedia

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