Twelfth Night

“Be not afraid of greatness”

Shakespeare, Twelfth Night, II, v

Epiphany has finally arrived. Tomorrow morning the kids will wake up very early to ask us that we bring them to their grandparents’ to see what the kings have left for them there (in our family gift-giving between Santa and the Kings is very fair and well organized). After opening the gifts from kings, we will have a fabulous breakfast at which the star will be the Roscón de Reyes and hot chocolate … delicious.

This year I decided to make the Roscón myself and, after a few bumps in the road, I managed to bake not one, but three delicious roscones!

No Time for embellishments, the sun was setting
No Time for embellishments, the sun was setting

This recipe has been tested (which I find fundamental. In my quest for the perfect roscón, I’m afraid that a few of the recipes out there have never been tested…which is not cool if you do not warn beforehand) and there’s enough quantity for two good size roscones. I hope you enjoy it and that you have a very nice Epiphany day.


  • 500 g bread flour
  • 15 g fresh yeast
  • 150 ml of milk
  • 2 or 3 eggs depending on size (do not exceed 170 g)
  • 120 g butter soft
  • 12 g salt
  • Candied fruits to taste (orange, pumpkin, cherry, melon ….)
  • 125 g sugar
  • 1 tablespoon rum
  • 2 tablespoons orange blossom water
  • Zest of 1 orange and 1 lemon


Dilute the yeast in 100 ml of warm milk. Put in a bowl 150 g of flour and pour in it the milk mixture, form with your fingertips a ball of dough. With the tip of a knife make a cross in the dough and cover with a damp towel or a film and let it sit in a draft-free place and not too cold for the dough to rise. The dough should increase two or three times in size and the cross will almost completely disappear when ready (a few hours). This dough will be our “sourdough” or starter dough.

When we are ready to continue, beat the eggs and add the rum, salt, sugar, orange blossom water, the remaining 50 ml of milk, butter and zests.

In another bowl put the remaining flour (350 g) and with the help of a spatula, slowly add the mixture, turning until a thin and elastic dough is formed. Incorporate the “sourdough” that has been resting and mix them both together.

Knead the resulting dough vigorously, knocking it against the table for about 20 minutes. At the beginning the mixture is very sticky and seem like it will never acquire the necessary texture, but with patience and adding a bit of flour occasionally (and only if we begin to lose hope), in the end the dough will acquire a homogeneous and elastic texture and it will easily peel off from the work surface (preferably marble or silicone).

Once achieved, the dough must rest again until it increases its size two or three times (consider using a bowl large enough to avoid overflow, cover well with plastic wrap and a cloth). At this point I divided the dough in half, put them in different bowls, and allowed them to rest overnight (here you can choose, if you want to freeze or refrigerate one of them for using it later or another day). The next morning (today), I knead and formed the roscones and allow them to rest and rise again for a few hours. Just before we went to the Kings’ Parade, I baked one (which we ate when we returned as a snack with hot coco) and the other just went out of the oven as I write this post. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.ENGL1

After the dough has leavened, besmear your hands with oil and deflate the dough with your fist, knead lightly and form the roscón.

There are two ways of forming the roscón:

  • Form a ball with the palm of your hand and roll it in circles. Then make a hole in the middle with your thumb and forefinger and continue to open the hole while turning the dough.
  • After forming the ball, form a long loop then join the ends.

With the roscón already formed, cover with a cloth and let rise again with the same criteria as before (double size), but this time on the baking sheet.

Preheat oven to 180 ° C (350 ° F).

Finally, brush with beaten egg mixed with milk; decorate with candied fruits, almonds and sugar.

Bake the roscón for about 25 minutes. Two important issues at this time are:

  • First, place the roscón in the lower area of the oven so it does not brown too quickly. If required, in the last minutes you can raise the tray a bit to finish browning
  • Second, it is advisable to place a container or tray with water in the oven to add humidity.

Adapted from

For other delicious recipes related with this, pay a visit to Tanya, A.K.A. Chica Andaluza and Barbara at Late bloomers. These gals have made two delicious recipes that I’m sure you’ll love.

Almost forgot! The Roscón de Reyes usually is filled with whipped cream or custard (nowadays also with mocha or chocolate) and inside are placed little “surprises”. If you get a figurine, then you will be the King or the Queen for the day; but if you get a bean, you’ll have to pay for the Roscón (the next one, I assume).

38 Replies to “Twelfth Night”

  1. Delicious, exactly seems so delicious! I can eat all of them. Thank you dear Giovanna, I noted this recipe, one day I want to try. Have a nice Epiphany day! Love, nia

  2. Ay Giovanna ha salido de maravilla! Yo también he hecho mi roscón anoche 🙂 Os deseamos todos un Feliz Día de los Reyes – que lo paséis muy bien con los abuelos. Un abrazo y gracias por el “link”

    1. Hola Tanya! Estoy segura de que el tuyo quedo espectacular :). En casa a todos les gustaron los roscones y se acabaron muy rápido. Los reyes fueron muy buenos y me trajeron un bolso muy bonito 😉 espero que tu día también haya sido genial.
      Un abrazo

  3. Hi Giovanna! Thanks a ton for the mention and link, wow – your roscon looks great. I love the idea of adding rum and orange blossom water to the dough, I will definitely try out your recipe. And thanks for the tip with the bowl of water for added humidity, I always do so when baking bread, strange, I never thought of doing it with a sweet yeast dough …!

    Feliz Dia de los Reyes!

  4. Excellent… uhm… the looks…. I’ll make them and try to find out if they taste excellent too! 🙂 I’ve got no doubt, honestly!!

  5. La Befana visited Italy bringing gifts on the Epiphany. I think giving gifts to mark the arrival of the 3 Kings is a great tradition, fitting of a bread as fantastic as the one you baked. Wish I had a piece! 🙂

  6. Yumly… where did my comment from last night go”? Oh well, another WordPress glitch I suppose… I like the looks of this… and I LOVE the idea of the gifting of the 3 Kings.

    1. Hi Charlie! Happy new year 🙂 Yes, it’s a Spanish tradition and French have something very similar called gallette de Rois. Maybe you can try it sometime in one of your wonderful trips 🙂

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