Oaxaca mural

Oaxaca mural

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Ring of the Kings

Today is the 475th anniversary of the founding of Mérida.  But, much more important for youngsters throughout Mexico, the sixth of January is Epiphany or the Day of the Kings ("Día de los Reyes").  This is the day when children wake up to discover that the Magi Kings have brought them gifts.  (Some lucky children also receive presents from Santa Claus on Christmas.)  

Another important part of the celebration is the "rosca de los Reyes" (the ring of the Kings).  This is a large, round pastry usually decorated with candied fruit.  Baked inside the "rosca" is a small ceramic or plastic image of the Baby Jesus.  Families and friends gather together on the night of January 6th to eat the "rosca".  Whoever gets the Baby Jesus in his/her slice of the pastry, is supposed to host a supper of tamales on  February 2nd (the feast day of "La Candelaria".)

While we were walking around Mérida this evening, we saw many people heading home from the bakeries carrying the large, flat boxes in which the "roscas" are packed.

The bakeries all do a brisk business on Epiphany.

Near the main plaza, there is a "Bisquets de Obregón", part of the chain of restaurant / bakeries found throughout Mexico.  The street in front of the restaurant was closed to traffic, and tables had been set out.  An announcer was loudly proclaiming that they had the world's largest "rosca"... a rather dubious claim.  What was set on the tables was not one enormous "rosca" but slices of laid out to form a huge rectangle.

Even though "Bisquets de Obregón" is far being the country's finest bakery,  I figured that this would be a good opportunity for Gail and Wes to sample the pastry.  I asked the employee at the table if I could buy three slices.  She said "yes", but first I had to pay the cashier who was stationed outside the restaurant entrance.  We went over to her, but everything was rather disorganized.  She was a soft-spoken young lady, and I could not hear her over the announcer who was going on and on over a loudspeaker about "the world's largest rosca here at Bisquets de Obregón!"  Finally I figured out that she was waiting for a cash register and change.  After a bit of a wait we were finally able to pay.   We received a receipt which we took to the table, where the employee placed our slices in bags.

Gail and Wes took their slices back to the hotel.  I will find out tomorrow what they thought of it, and if they had the Baby Jesus in one of their slices.


  1. I didn't much care for the Rosca, but the triplets are adorable.

    1. Well, don't forget that you ate it a couple days after we bought it. Plus, I don't consider "Bisquets de Obregón" to be one of the best bakeries. I bet it would have been better at that bakery where we bought the pastries.

  2. I did re-heat the rosca, but it was the candied fruit that was off-putting for me. Eli loved the triplets. He wanted them to come live in his zoo along with his dozens of tiny animals.