The holiday season comes to a close tomorrow with the celebration of Reyes (Three King’s Day, or the Epiphany), an important Spanish holiday that heralds the arrival of toys and gifts for children and loved ones, as well as the mass consumption of yet another Spanish gastronomic delicacy: Roscón de Reyes (King’s Cake).
This ring-shaped holiday bread is typically covered in almonds and sugar, and can also be decorated with candied fruit and stuffed with whipped cream. Other typical ingredients include orange-blossom water, citrus zest and, at times, a drop of rum. On the eve of this holiday and the days leading up to it, Spaniards have been known to wait in lines lasting up to four or even five hours for roscones made at the country’s most celebrated and historic bakeries.
Spanish chefs that have made their homes abroad, like famed Washington DC transplant José Andrés, have also brought these holiday flavors with them to their adoptive homes. He will be celebrating Reyes this year at his Jaleo restaurant, and has offered his customers the chance to order a traditional roscón to-go for their January 6th celebration.