AL DÍA's ultimate guide to Day of the Dead


The tradition


Staying alive with death

by Gustavo Martinez

Love of death, fear of death, respect of death, longing of death, taste of death, heat of death, living with death, the day of death. 
These are some of the expressions by which Mexicans conjugate their relationship with the end of life, with the feared word, with the unnamable, with that giving waking up every day true meaning.
Rooted in Mexico even before the Spanish Conquest, the cult to the dead not only helps to remember those who have left before us, but also to welcome them to this world when they visit us back on November 1 and 2.
In Philadelphia, this tradition continues in immigrant homes, where borders and distances are nonexistent when it comes to remembering their deceased. Read more...



Let's celebrate 'The Day Of The Dead'

by Ricardo Avila

On Long Island, the end of October brings Halloween — a day when my children behave even younger than they are.  So do some adults.  Silliness and greed rule.
In my Mexico City childhood, it brought El Día de los Muertos, a pause that mixed celebration with solemnity. The Day of the Dead was an adult ritual fashioned to include the participation of children.
My strongest memory of a Halloween-past in the United States is when, a few years ago, we ran out of candy and a disgruntled trick-or-treat child painted “Cheap SOB” on our front walk.
My strongest memory of a Day of the Dead celebration in Mexico is when, per custom, my parents led me to the cemetery to pay tribute to our departed with food, song, flowers and words. A majestic woman in black arrived a few graves down the row with a piano. She had it planted on top of her buried husband and delivered him a personal concert. Read more...


The food

Cookbook author's Day of the Dead videos celebrate family and Mexican heritage

Yvette Marquez-Sharpnack — a graphic designer, food blogger, and "Muy Bueno" cookbook author whose recipes were featured AL DÍA's 2013 Christmas edition — is a woman of many talents. In fact, just call her the Mexican-American Martha Stewart. Only much younger, prettier and more family-centric.

It was family — her then 8-year-old daughter, in fact —who prompted Marquez-Sharpnack to release her cookbook in English in 2012. "When my Grandmother passed away in 2004," she said, "I was afraid her recipes would die too — thankfully my mother knew how to make every one of her recipes. And together with my sister, we co-wrote a cookbook that not only shares recipes but the memories and stories that go along with them. It is a delicious family love story."

Likewise the videos. For the past few years Marquez-Sharpnack has produced a Day of the Dead video that stars one or more of her children. Read more...


Nine recipes for Day of the Dead

by Samantha Madera

Celebrate the Day of the Dead with the traditional (Mexican Hot Chocolate, Oaxacan Tamales, Pan de Muerto, Horchata, Mexican Street Corn, Sopa AztecaEnfrijoladas) and the not-so-traditional Day of the Dead Cookies and Spicy PopcornRecipes...


The Ofrenda (altar)

by David Cruz



The face-painting




The video art you have to watch

Hasta los Huesos by René Castillo

(12 minutes)


Día de los Muertos by Whoo Kazoo

(3 minutes)


Calaverita by Raúl y Rafael Cárdenas

(8 minutes)



The music — traditional and new 


Main Topic: 
Posted Date: 
Thursday, October 22, 2015 - 5:30pm

AL DÍA file photos.

Plain Text Author: 
Sabrina Vourvoulias