The fun continues…

“Day of the Dead is a beautiful, spiritual family holiday to honor the memory of dead relatives. It’s not really the memory of their death but spending time thinking about and feeling the essence of their life. It’s a bonding time and respectful time that brings generations together within a family and the entire community. Continuance of these ancient traditions, getting everyone’s sleeves rolled up to work on food preparation, tomb cleaning and building an elaborate ofrenda in the living room brings solace to older folks that might otherwise fear that they will be forgotten after their death. And for those of the religious persuasion, this is a very sacred encounter with dear missed spirits that have been released from heaven for a day, allowed to return to enjoy the visits, offerings and foods of their family.” (source)

This is a 2 day holiday. You can read about some of the  foods for Day of the Dead if you like.  And here are a few ideas that would work on the Fast Metabolism Diet. You may have to tweak a few of the actual ingredients; just think of them as a starting point to get your own creative juices flowing.

  • sugar skull fruit idea  (dairy is out, but a skull made of fruit would be perfect for Phase 1)
  • beans & rice (simple but always satisfying, Phase 1 and 3)
  • skull sandwhich (Phase 1 and 3)
  • skull pie idea ( I love the skull cut-out! How about a savory veggie pie with a sprouted tortilla skull cut-out?)
  • marigold salad  (marigolds are not on the approved list but it IS a salad… maybe a few symbolic decorative flowers then LOTS of greens… All Phases)
  • Marigold sheppard’s pie (These look like marigolds to me; Phase 1 and 3; filling can be altered as you like)
  • 3 Bean Mole ( Phase 1 and 3) (This is a VERY simple version of Mole but yummy)

My day’s inspirations

  1. Pan de Muerto:            “Pan de muerto, also known as bread of the dead or dead man’s bread, is a traditional Mexican sweet bread that is eaten during the Day of the Dead.In the days and weeks leading up to the Day of the Dead, the inviting scent of pan de muerto wafts through the air of local markets and bakeries all throughout Mexico. It’s an ancient culinary tradtion of the Day of the Dead, and it’s often seen as a symbol of the holiday, like candy canes at Christmas.”  (source)   I usually make a vegan version of pan de muerto, but this year I decided to focus on the flavors instead…  “the bread is typically flavored with anise seed, but cinnamon and orange zest are also used.” (same source).  I missed having a slice of this yummy treat, but I created Pan de Muerto Oatmeal to start my day.Oranges in oatmeal was a first for me and quite delicious!
  2. Sugar Skulls:                 “Called “calaveras de azúcar” in Spanish, these sugary sweets are sold everywhere on the days and weeks leading up to Day of the Dead. Market stalls are lined with rows and rows of colorful skulls, created from sugar and decorated with multi-colored icing, shiny foil, sequins and glitter. These festive treats are also made at home. Sugar skulls are given as gifts to both the living and the dead, often with the name of the recipient written on the skull’s forehead in icing. When they are offered to the dead, they are placed lovingly on an altar for the deceased along with other ofrenda, such as the person’s favorite foods and drinks when they were alive.” (source)  And…Just look at all the fruit on the ofrenda!   I decided to make my Sugar Skull from fruit. THIS felt like an awesome way to honor Phase 1!
  3. Marigolds:                 “Why marigolds? It is believed that the spirits of the dead visit the living during the celebration. Marigolds guide the spirits to their altars using their vibrant colors and scent. Marigolds, or flowers in general, also represent the fragility of life.” (source).  I honored the marigold tradition with a special marigold themed lunch and the casserole combination was so delicious that I will definitely repeat it!
  4. Mole:                           “The whole point of an ofrenda (altar offering) is to show the dead that you care enough to give them the very best. Mole, which contains anywhere from 20 to 50 ingredients, is representative of this. Since the dead only require a small portion, the living must finish the dish in order not to waste the food.” (source)  Mole is a must-have.  I served the traditional family mole for the chicken eaters in the house and a more simple version over beans for myself.  I always have to serve calabacitas too. “Technically, calabacita is Spanish for squash, but … we use the word generally to mean this dish made from squash. Calabacitas recipes are like green chili stew recipes out here in New Mexico – everybody has one and it is the best.” (source) My own calabacitas are vegan and worked perfectly for Phase 1.
  5. Chocolate:              “At the customary cemetery evening-watch, families will drink hot chocolate.” (source) Champurrado is also very popular during Día de Muertos; similar to hot chocolate, this hot drink also has ground corn and special touches like vanilla, anise, and cinnamon.  How could I not find a way to include a hot chocolate in my day?

5:45 Hot Tea

6:15 Pan de Muerto inspired Oatmeal: oats made with anise seed, cinnamon, & fresh orange slices; I also steeped an orange tea bag in the water I used for the oats.

9:00 Fruity Sugar Skull  (used  the free template here  on Parchment paper)

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12:30 Marigold Casserole (mixture of spinach, rice, and leftover veggie chile topped with marigolds of piped sweet potato) and Marigold colored mango sorbet

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3:30 leftover fruit from making my Fruity Sugar Skull

6:00 seltzer with lemon

6:30  Mole on Beans and Rice and Calabacitas (roasted zucchini, yellow squash,  and onions tossed with lots of chopped cilantro) PLUS a Hot chocolate for  dessert: made with oat milk from this great book + cocoa + sweetener + grated orange rind

8:30 Hot Tea

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