Season‘s Greetings 2006 from PDF Tools - The traditional chronicles of Swiss Christmas, Part 2

 The traditional chronicles of Swiss Christmas, Part 4 - Christmas Cookies

3‑Kings Bread

Last year our Christmas greeting was about the tradition of Santa Claus and the Black Peter, who visit on Dec. 6. This year I would like to talk about another special Swiss tradition that takes place exactly one month later, after Christmas and New Years Day. January 6 is Three Kings Day, the day according to lore that the Three Kings arrived in Bethlehem. In many countries January 6 represents the end of the holiday season.

The Christmas lights get turned off, the last large feast is served, the Christmas tree gets taken down etc. In Switzerland we celebrate Three Kings Day in a special way. In Switzerland it's the bread that makes this day really unique. We have a special 3-Kings Bread, a type of sweet bread, that is formed like buns in a circle all connected together, and another bun in the middle. There are usually 6, 8 or 10 buns in the circle and one of them contains a small, thin plastic king (about ¾ inch or 2 cm. long).

The 3-Kings Bread also comes with a cardboard crown and, you guessed it, whoever gets the bun with the king in it is "King" for the day and gets to wear the crown. Most offices have 3-Kings Bread and being king is a bit of fun, but at home it is a monumental event.

If you have more than one child, then be prepared for a day to remember. My 10 year old daughter had the king in her one piece of bread for 3 years in a row. My son, who is two years older, didn't forget a single one of them. Twice in a row was bad enough, but after the third time he was in tears.

When he finally had the king last January, you'd think he had won the lottery. And, believe it or not, he actually kept the king in his bedroom all year long, so he can put it in his bun this time around, just in case the real one lands by his sister again! We're talking really serious stuff here!

So, if you happen to be in Switzerland on January 6, go into any bakery and buy a 3-Kings Bread. Be careful who you share your bread with though, because one only needs to be king once to remind you about it for a lifetime!


All of us at PDF Tools AG wish you, your family, and your friends a wonderful holiday season and prosperity in 2007. We look forward to working together with you again in the New Year.

Your team