Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Pan de Muertos
Seattle Center vendor, $2
As befits a holiday commemorating the dead, Seattle Center's Dia de los Muertos celebration featured a range of fleeting pleasures, from sand paintings and dancing (below), to face paints and skeletal balloons, to sweet treats including calavera sugar skulls and sugar-dusted pan de muertos, or bread of the dead.
On altars built by school and civic groups (below center), pan de muertos of all sizes were laid out with other delicacies as an offering to visiting souls, but the bread is also eaten by the living as part of their holiday observance. Most pan de muertos is shaped in ways that hint at bones or skulls, or in the case of the bread above, three quick cuts and a twist turned a simple loaf into something quite suggestive of a dead body laid out for burial.