Sunday, January 6, 2013

Twelfth Night (The Christmas Do-over Opportunity)

Maybe you didn't have time to make those special cookies you always take to your neighbours. Or you couldn't think of anything to give your husband, who has more accessories than a Ken Doll. Or you missed your favourite Christmas movie on TV.

No worries, Twelfth Night is here!

Otherwise known as Epiphany Eve, this is the night when the Three Kings, Caspar, Balthazar and Melchior (oh yes, they have names, and even nationalities) come to town!

On Do-Over Twelfth Night, you can kick things off by going to the 3 King's Parade, which spends hours winding itself through the centre of the city. When you get home, place your shoe under a chair, so the Kings will know where to leave your gifts. Forget the milk - leave out three glasses of champagne and some turron, a sweet almond bar.

When you wake up on the 6th, Epiphany, if you've been good, you'll have a chair covered in presents! And if you've been bad, some coal, but don't worry, it's candy-coal and you'll get presents, too. The Kings are a little more understanding than Santa. They know it's hard to be good all the time, and hey, kids will be kids, and why not give the crazy ones some candy to help them be even crazier?

Anyway, you open your presents, and then it's time for one more holiday meal with the family. Lamb, ham, turkey, chicken, paella... the main course doesn't matter, the star of today is dessert - roscon de reyes, or Kings' cake.

This looks like a giant doughnut. You want some already, don't you? Sometimes it's sliced in half and filled with cream or chocolate truffle. Really nice with a tiny cup of strong coffee. Are you drooling? No? Just me, then.

Chew carefully - one  person will end up with a mouthful of figurine, and someone else will bite down on a bean! If you get the figurine, you can wear the gold paper crown that comes with the roscon- you're a king for the day! If you get the bean, get your wallet out- you're paying for the roscon!

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