As Mardi Gras approaches, one of the ways in which people celebrate the official start to Carnival season (also known as the Pre-Lenten period) is with king cakes, desserts that typically come in the form of a sweet brioche dough in the shape of a hollow circle topped with glaze sprinkled with colored sugar.

Purple, green, and gold are the symbolic colors of the king cake. Purple represents justice, green represents faith, and gold represents power. Each cake typically has a tiny baby inside made of plastic or porcelain. It symbolizes luck and prosperity to whoever finds it.

The king cake season is very important for local bakeries. They stock up for this booming baking season for weeks or months. Ovens typically run all day during the peak of the season, with bakeries constantly churning out fresh cakes for customers.

One of those bakeries preparing for Mardi Gras is Houston, Texas-based Three Brothers Bakery. For February 21, customers can get the bakery’s version which features royal icing and is decorated with purple, yellow, and green sanding sugar.

Flavors include cinnamon, cream cheese, strawberry, raspberry, and blueberry. Cream cheese and fruit mixes are also available. A plastic baby is included with each purchase.

The bakery also offers Mardi Gras-themed cheesecakes, cookies and petit fours.