Pumpkin in Syrup – A Sweet Offering for the Day of the Dead

My Slice of Mexico

In pre-Hispanic times, the Mexica commemorated the dead during their summer months around July and August; the offerings included elements of Nature, such as fire, flowers, and part of the harvest, which in those regions of Central and Southern Mexico consisted of chili (today known around the world as: chiles, chilli, capsicum, paprika, peppers, guindilla, etc.) as well as corn, beans and squash (the well-known “three sisters” crops, all native to the Americas).  Mictēcacihuātl, also known as “The Lady of the Dead”, was the female deity of the Mexica pantheon dedicated to guard the bones of the deceased in the underworld; she was said to come to the dimension of the living during this time.  With the arrival of the Catholic church not long after the Spanish conquest,  the angst provoked by these ancient rituals was placated with great success – during the native population’s conversion process – when combined…

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