Cultural Bytes | Interactive Language Program

The Byte Blog | Pan De Muerto

Pan de Muerto

Machu Picchu
Photo by Marco Samaniego on Unsplash

Welcome back to our Byte Blog! Continuing our Spanish learning journey with ViLaCa we will see time and time again all the fascinating topics our students will be learning! These last few weeks we have been sharing the many important locations that are found throughout Latin America. Last week we learned about a place that is filled with wonder, Machu Picchu! Did you get a chance to read it? If not, check out Machu Picchu to learn more! Pan de Muerto

In our last blog we visited a place deep in the Andes mountains in Peru. Now we are turning our attention to something that can satisfy your sweet tooth and is tied to Mexican tradition. Pan de muerto or bread of the dead is a staple element in the Day of the Dead altar. Do you know the holiday Day of the Dead? Many confuse it as a Mexican halloween, but it is far from that. During this holiday, which starts October 31st through November 2nd, Mexicans honor their loved ones who have passed away.

This delicious bread is typically sold at bakeries and supermarkets starting around the middle of October. Offerings, like Pan de Muerto, are put on the altars made at home or on gravesites. Pan de Muerto

 

The bread represents an offering made to loved ones who have passed on

 

Having such strong ties to Mexican tradition, what does the Pan de Muerto represent? The bread represents an offering made to loved ones who have passed on. Family members are the ones who eat the offering, but it is believed that when the spirit of their loved one returns during the Day of the Dead, it can be nourished by the “essence” of the bread, and any offering left for them. The shape of the bread has various meanings, but most will say that the pieces forming a cross symbolizes the bones of the dead. The many interpretations for the symbolism of the bread are many just as there are different ways to decorate the bread. Pan de Muerto can be found covered in white sugar, red sugar, sesame seeds, sprinkles, or simply brushed with an egg wash.  Pan de Muerto

Pan de Muerto is part of an important tradition in Mexico. Have you or your family celebrated Day of the Dead before? If not, what kind of Pan de Muerto would you like to try? Let us know in the comments below!

 

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