I made this delicious and satisfying linguine dish last night:…
All Hallows Eve has come and gone (I hope your jack-o’-lantern didn’t get smashed on the pavement!), but today marks a couple of “days of the dead” to enjoy. The good news is that sugar and chocolate still play a role.
Following Halloween, dias de los muertos — November 1 and 2 — are important days for places like Mexico. Food plays an important role, not surprisingly. All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day are those all important dates in November. In these cultures, the days are are recognized by trips to cemeteries where altars are set up to pray for and commemorate family and friends who have passed away. Chocolate and sugar skulls are presented, and nibbled on, as gifts to the dearly departed. Beverages such as tequila are also offered.
Smaller skulls are offered to deceased children, while larger and more intricate and decoratively elaborate skulls represent adults. In good pastry and candy fashion, the designs are usually not too scary.
An interesting sidebar…Malcolm Lowry’s magisterial Canadian novel Under the Volcano is set during a day of the muertos and captures beautifully the cultural aspects of this belief system.
[Image courtesy of Stu Spivak via Wikimedia Commons.]