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Recipe: Rosca de Reyes (Three Kings Sweet Bread)



This ring-shaped bread, baked in Peru and Mexico, contains a surprise: a small doll representing the baby Jesus baked right in. The bread is served on Epiphany—January 6—and whoever gets the slice with the doll must host a party on the next festival day. For a party-size rosca:

Ingredients

Dough:
1 .6 oz (2 3/4 cakes) compressed yeast
8 1/2 cups flour
8 eggs
1 1/4 cup sugar
1 3/4 cups butter, softened
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

Decorative paste:
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 3/4 cups flour

Topping:
Candied fruit

Directions

  1. Crumble the yeast into 1/2 cup warm water. Mix with the remainder of the dough ingredients and beat until the dough is smooth and elastic. On a large, ungreased baking sheet, shape the dough into a large ring. Tuck a miniature plastic doll inside the dough. Cover the ring with a clean cloth or towel and leave it in a warm place for 2 hours.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350˚ . After the ring has risen, before baking, prepare the decorative paste by creaming the butter and sugar in a medium bowl. Beat in the egg, then gradually mix in the flour. Decorate the ring with the paste by making rays out from the center.
  3. Bake 40–50 minutes, until ring is golden brown. Decorate with candied fruit.

Recipe by Karen Hursh graber. As presented in Mexico Connect, www.mexconnected.com.

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