Rosca de Reyes

The Rosca de Reyes is the traditional bread that is eaten for the celebration of the Three Kings on January 6th.  The Three Kings are Gaspar, Melchor and Baltasar.  The classic beverage that goes with this is a steaming hot Mexican chocolate.  What a wonderful child friendly dinner.  Each person cuts their slice and hidden in the bread is a plastic or porcelain baby Jesus.  The person that gets the toy is responsible for hosting a party on the 2nd of February, the “Dia de la Candelaria”.  Hey, it can’t be bad to have holiday celebrations from December to February!!!

rosca-de-reyes-1

The traditional song is below, with it’s English translation.

Ya vienen los Reyes Magos
ya vienen los Reyes Magos
caminito de Belén
olé, olé, Holanda y olé
Holanda ya se ve

Cargaitos de jugetes
cargaitos de jugetes
para el Niño de Belén
olé, olé, Holanda y olé
Holanda ya se ve

Qué cargados van
qué cargados van
los camellos rebozan jugetes
para el Rey de los cielos
que está en el portal

Que está en el portal
que está en el portal
los camellos rebozan jugetes
para el Rey de los cielos
que está en el portal

Como el camino es tan largo
como el camino es tan largo
pide el Niño de beber
olé, olé Holanda y olé
Holanda ya se ve

No pidas agua mi vida
no pidas agua mi vida
no pidas agua mi bien
olé, olé Holanda y olé
Holanda ya se ve

Que los ríos vienen turbios
que los ríos vienen turbios
y no se puede beber
olé, olé Holanda y olé
Holanda ya se ve

Dicen que nació
dicen que nació
sin pañales ni ropa ninguna
y la misma luna sábanas de Dios

Sábanas de Dios
sábanas de Dios
sin pañales ni ropa ninguna
y la misma luna sábanas de Dios.

The Wise Men are coming
the Wise Men are coming
on their way to Bethlehem
olé, olé, Holy land and olé
Holy land can be seen.
Carrying lots of toys
carrying lots of toys
for the Child in Bethlehem
olé, olé, Holy land and olé
Holy land can be seen.

What a load they carry
what a load they carry
the camels bearing all the toys
for the King of Heaven
that is in the portal.

That is in the portal
that is in the portal
the camels are loaded with toys
for the King of Heaven
who is in the portal.

Since the journey is too long
since the journey is too long
the Child asks for water
olé, olé, Holy land and olé
Holy land can be seen.

Don’t ask for water my love
don’t ask for water my love
don’t ask for water my dear
olé, olé, Holy land and olé
Holy land can be seen.

The rivers are turbid
the rivers are turbid
and you can’t drink its water
olé, olé, Holy land and olé
Holy land can be seen.

They say He was born
they say He was born
without dippers or cloths
but  the moon is God’s bed sheet.

God’s bed sheets
God’s bed sheets
without dippers or cloths
but the moon is God’s bed sheet.

In Mexico there are so many great bakeries that make super Rosca.  I really don’t make it,  yes, yes…I know… But here is a really nice recipe from Ingrid Hoffman.  She does a really wonderful job with it.

Three Kings Bread: Rosca de Reyes
Recipe courtesy Ingrid Hoffmann, 2008

Prep Time:35 minInactive Prep Time:1 hr 0 minCook Time:40 min
Level:
Difficult
Serves:
8 servings

Ingredients
1 (1/4-ounce) packet active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup dried figs, cut into strips, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup candied orange peel, cut into strips, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup candied lemon peel, cut into strips, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup chopped candied cherries, plus more whole for garnish
2 tablespoons light rum
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
3 1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
3 large eggs, divided
Water
Directions
In a small bowl, combine the yeast and warm water; stir to blend. Let stand until the yeast comes alive and starts to foam, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Put all of the candied fruit in small bowl and drizzle the rum on top. Let stand for 15 minutes to 1 hour to infuse the flavor.

In a small pot, warm the milk over medium heat. Add the sugar, butter, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.

In a large bowl, mix 3 1/2 cups flour, 2 eggs, yeast mixture, milk mixture, and the rum soaked candied fruits, mixing very well until the dough gathers into a ball. If the dough is too wet, Add additional flour, a little at a time, if needed to form a soft dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until it’s smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Put the ball of dough back into the bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and set aside in a warm spot to rise for 1 hour.

Remove the dough from the bowl and knead on a lightly floured surface. Using your palms, roll the dough into a long rope. Shape the coil into a ring, sealing the ends together. Insert a little doll or coin into the bread from the bottom, if desired. Line a baking pan with aluminum foil and coat with nonstick cooking spray. Carefully transfer the dough ring to the prepared baking pan.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat the remaining egg in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon of water to make an egg wash, and brush the top of the bread. Decoratively garnish the top of the bread with more candied fruit and bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the cake is golden.

Cool on a wire rack before slicing.

Cook’s Note: Let your guests know there is a little doll or coin inserted inside.

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