Celebrate Dia de los Muertos this year (November 1 and 2) with traditional Pan de Muerto. (Bread of the Dead) Considered one of the most representative holidays of Mexican culture, Day of the Dead is a time to pay respects to loved ones who have passed with bright and colorful altars. Served at each dinner and offered throughout the day, pan de muerto comes in different styles and shapes. The most popular is round, covered with white sugar, with strips that simulate bones. There are also those in the shape of skeletons. The ingredients may vary depending on each region in Mexico, as in the case of bread covered with sesame seeds from Mixquic or covered in pink sugar from Mexico City.The characteristic taste of the bread from the AAA Five Diamond Grand Velas Riviera Maya Resort is the Flor de Azahar (Orange Blossom). If you can’t be there in person, this is the next best thing.
Pan de Muerto Recipe Courtesy of Grand Velas Riviera Maya Resport
(Makes 3 loaves)
3 ½ C flour
1 ½ t salt
1 ½ t S-500 (bakery improver – if unavailable allow bread to sit overnight before baking)
7 sticks butter
3 egg yolks
4 whole eggs
¾ C Orange blossom infusion*
2 Oranges, zest only
- Place all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix on medium speed for 8 minutes. Increase speed to high for another 8 minutes when the dough is firm and elastic.
- Divide dough into 17 portions, forming perfect spheres to place on a baking sheet. Use one portion to form the bones shapes for the top of the bread.
- Adhere the bones shapes to the top of the round dough with a beaten egg using a brush.
- Let the dough sit until doubled in size. Bake at 310 degrees for about 25 minutes.
- When the bread is cold, varnish with melted butter and then frost with granulated sugar.
* To make orange blossom infusion: Boil 2 liters of water with 3.5 oz orange blossoms, boil for 10 minutes and let stand for 24 hours in refrigerator, filter and use the infusion.