Little Bit O’ Christmas

There’s still a little Christmas left in us yet. On January 6th, the Feast of the Epiphany, or Three Kings Day, is celebrated around the world with festivities that mark the arrival of the three Kings to Bethlehem. For some of us, it’s another day to get/give presents. For others, it’s a day to fill up with special cakes, to be found in French, or Latin bakeries. Who doesn’t need another excuse for cake?

For parties, the Almond Cake , with it’s buried treasure, and crown, add a note of French Old World. The “feve”, sometimes an actual bean, but nowadays, a small ceramic figurine, is hidden inside the cake. Whoever finds it is the King for a Day, and gets to wear the crown convenienvtly provided by the bakery. With a warm toddy of mulled wine, it’s the way to wrap up the Twelve Days of Christmas, and start the road to St. Valentine’s Day.

There’s an interesting cultural phenomenon known as the Three Kings’ Day Parade organized by El Museo del Barrio, complete with camels and costumes. Take a trip uptown to 106th, and Madison, to see something you won’t see this side of Puerto Rico. It’s a carefree celebration that will leave your heart in the right place, and give you a reason for trekking to East Harlem. Museum Mile is just a hop, skip and a jump away, so make a day of it.
Rockefeller Center still hosts it’s 74 foot tree, until the 7th. January 6th is usually the official day for decorations to be taken down, so there are yet glimpses to be had of magical store windows. The word is that the tree is now used for projects with Habitat for Humanity, by milling the lumber and allocating the wood for local housing projects. A little magic goes a long way.

Wondering how to cook a Three Kings Cake for Epiphany? Find out here!