The Merienda de Reyes is truly a multicultural event. The
Spaniards brought the tradition of celebrating the Epiphany and sharing the Rosca to the New World. The Rosca is
served along with Tamales, made of corn which was the pre-Hispanic food per excel lance, and hot chocolate. Chocolate is also a
gift from the native peoples of the New World.
Hidden inside this delicious Rosca, a plastic figurine of the Baby Jesus. The
Baby is hidden because it symbolizes the need to find a secure place where Jesus could be born, a place where King Herod would not find Him.
Each person cuts a slice of the Rosca . The knife
symbolizes the danger in which the Baby Jesus was in.
One by one the guests carefully inspect their slice, hopping they didn't get the figurine.
Whoever gets the baby figurine shall be the host, and invite everyone present to a new
celebration on February 2, Candelaria or Candle mass day, and he also shall get a new Ropón or dress for the Baby
Jesus of the Nativity scene.
3 1/2 cups flour
1 packet yeast
3/4 cups of sugar
125 grams butter
1/4 cup lukewarm milk
Dash of salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp aniseed
100 grams raisins
1 tsp vanilla
50 grams candied figs
50 grams candied orange
50 grams candied lemon
50 grams candied cherries
50 grams candied citron
1 beaten egg
Dissolve the yeast in five tablespoons lukewarm milk. Mix the flour, yeast,
sugar, eggs, melted butter, milk, salt, cinnamon, aniseed, raisins, and vanilla. Knead into a ball; grease it with some butter and place near a warm stove
until the dough doubles in size. (About 2 1/2 hours) Meanwhile cut into strips the candied fruit.
Knead, banging it down on the floured tabletop, to make it soft and pliable.
Form the dough into a ring or rosca. Insert the baby figurine. Place the rosca on a greased backing tray.
Decorate it with the strips of candied fruit. Leave the rosca once more to fluff up again. Brush the rosca with the beaten egg and sprinkle over granulated sugar.
Bake for 40 minutes at 360°
F ( 180°C) in preheated oven.
Enjoy! And don't forget whomever gets the Baby figurine will have to host a new merienda comeFebruary 2!