Día de Muertos - 'The Day of the Dead' is one of the biggest celebrations in Mexico. It takes place on 2nd November and Laura, Diaspo's Mexican cook, felt it's enjoyed by many, but understood by few...
What is Día de Muertos?
It's a celebratory day to remember the dead. Native Mexicans believed it was an honour to pass away, since the death of an individual meant a continuation of their life through the different Gods - human blood and flesh fed the Gods to keep them alive.
How do people celebrate?
They create an offering, an altar with flowers, light and lots of food. The flowers are called Cempasúchil, orange marigolds, cultivated at this time of the year. They are placed with light and candles, which allows the dead to see routes to come back. When they arrive at the offerings, they find their favourite food, for example, if they liked cornflakes, they will leave a pack of cornflakes in the altar offering. Plus Pan de Muertos, Day of the Dead bread which we all eat afterwards.
How will you celebrate?
I will be setting up an altar for my mother. We will be making Pan de Muertos, tamales and pozole, buñuelos. I will be leaving a bottle of tequila for her as that was her favourite drink.
Why do people celebrate?
After 500 years of cultural mix, even in modern times, The Day of the Dead is still a magical festivity that is an interesting mix between sadness and great joy. One thing as a Mexican we learn from no age is that our own death is the only event in our life we can be 100% sure it will happen, so it is better to take it with a humourous philosophy, because no matter what you do or what you achieve, death will always reach you.
Laura is teaching Mexican Smokey Chipotle Baked Enchiladas on Sunday 22nd November - book here.