Friday, October 30, 2009
Day Of The Dead, Mexico
Don't get me wrong. But, our Halloween is just orange and black. With a black cat and witch. Basically, dark. But, in some of the countries south of the border. What a beautiful pretty day. Flowers of marigolds, candy, cakes, candles, sugar skulls, breads, and just the wonderment of colors. They don't make it scary at all for children. They make the celebrating of the dead. Fun! And, cheerful. We do too. But, not as vibrant.
November 1st is for the celebration of the dead children. November 2nd for the adults. It's mainly a holiday that is based with the Olmec, Zapotec, Mixtec, Mexican or Aztec, Maya, P'urhépecha, and Totonac Indians. The reason we know about it is more for the sugar skulls called Calavera. And, most of all the figurines called La Calavera Catrina.
And, for my Ghost Lounge friends. Here's a recipe, enjoy!
Pan de Muerto, "Bread of the Dead"
In celebration of Mexico's Day of the Dead, this bread is often shaped into skulls or round loaves with strips of dough rolled out and attached to resemble bones.
* 1/2 cup butter
* 1/2 cup milk
* 1/2 cup water
* 5 to 5-1/2 cups flour
* 2 packages dry yeast
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 1 tablespoon whole anise seed
* 1/2 cup sugar
* 4 eggs
In a saucepan over medium flame, heat the butter, milk and water until very warm but not boiling.
Meanwhile, measure out 1-1/2 cups flour and set the rest aside. In a large mixing bowl, combine the 1-1/2 cups flour, yeast, salt, anise seed and sugar. Beat in the warm liquid until well combined. Add the eggs and beat in another 1 cup of flour. Continue adding more flour until dough is soft but not sticky. Knead on lightly floured board for ten minutes until smooth and elastic.
Lightly grease a bowl and place dough in it, cover with plastic wrap and let rise in warm place until doubled in bulk, about 1-1/2 hours. Punch the dough down and shape into loaves resembling skulls, skeletons or round loaves with "bones" placed ornamentally around the top. Let these loaves rise for 1 hour.
Bake in a preheated 350 F degree oven for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and paint on glaze.
* 1/2 cup sugar
* 1/3 cup fresh orange juice
* 2 tablespoons grated orange zest
Bring to a boil for 2 minutes, then apply to bread with a pastry brush.
If desired, sprinkle on colored sugar while glaze is still damp.