Day of the Dead – Día de Muertos

Today I went to a friend’s house to pick up a ‘Pan de muerto’ and some cookies in the shape of skulls. She really is a nice baker.

I don’t know until when she will be selling these ‘Pan de muerto’ but she bakes all kinds of cakes if you want to order something else. If you are interested, let me know and I will give you her contact details.

Let me tell you something about Día de muertos…

On November 2 is the day of the dead  in Mexico. This is a Mexican tradition that celebrates and honors the deceased.

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The origins of the celebration of the Day of the Dead in Mexico predate the arrival of the Spaniards. There are some ethnic celebrations registered from different former mexican cultures as the Maya, Purepecha and Totonac cultures.

Rituals celebrating the life of the ancestors in these civilizations are made from at least three thousand years ago.

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In the prehispanic era it was common practice to keep skulls as trophies and display them during the rituals to symbolize death and rebirth.

Mexico is a country rich in culture and traditions, one of the main issues around their identity as a nation is the concept we have about life, death and all the traditions and beliefs that revolve around them.

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The bread of the dead, has its origin in the time of the Conquest, inspired by pre-Hispanic rituals.

They say that it was a ritual in Mexico before the conquest. A virgin princess was offered to the gods, her heart still beating was introduced in a pot with amaranth and after the ritual, the person who offered the princess, would bite this heart of in gratitude to God.

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The Spanish rejected such sacrifices. They worked out a heart-shaped bread, dipped in sugar painted red, simulating the blood of a virgin.

Eating ‘pan de muertos’ is for the Mexican a pleasure, a type of cannibalism but with bread and sugar. ;) This phenomenon is treated with respect and irony, it defies and tease death by eating her.

I found a  nice infographic about the tradition of offering food, drinks… to the dead:

” The Altar or ‘offering to the dead’ is a sacred Mexican tradition, where those alive honor those who have passed away….”

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Until the next time… Cheers!

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