You know that I love food, vegan food, and of course, vegan Mexican food is not the exception. We love to share with you our creations and experiments with traditional Mexican recipes and make them vegan.
On this occasion, one of the unique recipes is “vegan dead bread.” (Pan de Muerto) Why is this so unique? Because it is part of one of the biggest and beautiful traditions of Mexico.
For those who visit us from other parts of the world, In Mexico, we remember our relatives who have passed away on a celebration called “Día de Muertos” or day of the dead. According to popular tradition, children’s spirit comes back to life on November 1st and (All Saints Day), and adults’ souls return on November 2nd.
Each region celebrates this day in his way, but remembering the deceased, it’s the major part of this tradition. So, it is common to see families bringing flowers and food to cemeteries where their loved ones rest in peace.
In some places in Mexico, the tradition of the day of the dead is prominent. In addition to praying and lighting candles, some people place altars full of symbolism and food in their houses (among them the “Pan de Muerto”). These are some of the ways that the Mexican people remember those who already passed us.
This recipe is not the simplest to prepare. Preparation time is long because of dough, so you have to be patient. It is certainly worth doing it.
As part of the tradition, we try to recreate the typical taste in this recipe. Without the need to use lard, egg, or dairy. A recipe worth sharing with friends and family.
The tradition of the day of the dead is undoubtedly one of the most typical and beautiful celebrations that Mexico has. One of the things that are very like by people on this date is the delicious vegan dead bread (Pan de Muerto) .
This is something that only can not be missing for any Mexican wherever they are, or for those who are interested in our culture and this beautiful tradition. That’s why we share the recipe for vegan dead bread.
Sadly, dead bread is sold in the streets and bakeries of Mexico only once a year (Total injustice, don’t you think?).
This bread is placed on the altar to honor the dead of our family. You can find it during the last weeks of October to eat it on November 2nd, the day of the dead. That is why it’s essential to have the recipe, so you can make it whenever you want.
Remember that vegan dead bread (Pan de Muerto) always tastes better with hot chocolate; in this case, our vegan version is perfect with vegetable milk and chocolate. If you use homemade milk, you can add some cornstarch to thicken and make it better with this Mexican recipe for dead vegan bread. Personally, this is one of my favorite ways to eat it. It reminds me of those days when I visited my grandmother.
And where during previous days, she directed children of the family to prepare the recipe as she knew it. And where in the evening we met as a family to finally taste dead bread together. In tradition, many Mexican families prefer to cook them rather than buy them, and with this, we can preserve the recipes. Which I love, and I feel proud.
In Mexican cuisine, there is a habit of making variations to recipes depending on the state of Mexico. In addition to that, it is common for Mexican families to make slight modifications to traditional recipes. In this case, variations are also in the bread’s final figure. Since the dough is the representation of human bones, there are other dead bread figures where the human skull is recreated.
You can make the figure you like best. Here we present the popular one, which is the shape of the bones.
In Oaxaca, Puebla, Mexico City, you can find variants of the bread of the dead in the traditional markets. Recipe versions include those that cover sesame bread, others where melted chocolate on the cover. The modification we have of the vegan dead bread is the sugary version, which is the most common in the whole country.
It is essential that when preparing vegan dead bread, you know a little of the symbolisms that this recipe traditionally has. As Mexicans, it is something we should not miss, even if we make a vegan version and that for some, it may seem out of the ordinary. We can also get some of our traditions to vegan people around the world.
Like any modification of the Mexican vegan recipes that we have made, we try to make the final result seem the most possible in terms of texture, flavor, and shape. This vegan dead bread recipe perfectly fits with traditional versions. As we mentioned earlier, this is the famed version of bread, the chocolate version, and others will come later on our own.
The tradition of the Day of the Dead
The day of the dead, like all Mexican traditions, is an excuse to eat with family and friends.
This day, it is one of the colorful days that our country has, unlike being a date to cry; it is entirely a celebration. The altars are full of food, drinks, favorite things of the deceased, photos, paper figures. Catrinas, catrines characterize by people. From the pantheons to the schools, they do their best to keep this tradition present; it is merely color, color, and more color.
To start talking about vegan dead bread (Pan de Muerto), remember that, for the substitution of the ingredients we will change the lard with margarine (you can make your own vegan margarine based on coconut butter for its thick consistency) and that we will change the egg with you paint the vegan dead bread (Pan de Muerto) with coconut oil or melted margarine, so that the sugar is well impregnated. For the egg of the dough, we will use ground flaxseed soaked in water since it is a perfect substitute because it does not interfere with the taste and is thick enough to compact the dough.
The vegan dead bread recipe is not necessarily a recipe for people who are dieting, but we can simply say that it is part of a very important tradition and that we cannot deny that it has a delicious taste that we should not miss only For being vegan. It is worth making this recipe to share with several people for the family tradition and because its flavor is very rich. In addition, it is very spongy by the time it is kneaded.
To learn more about this tradition and enter into total connection with this recipe (in case you are not Mexican) I recommend you look for images about how it is celebrated throughout the country, since from the characterizations of makeup and costumes of catrines and catrines, the people and the variety of colors that are in this party — hoping that with this recipe, you can get a little transport to the origins of the celebration.
In 2008, UNESCO named this tradition as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity of Mexico. In the north of the country competes with Halloween for its proximity to the United States, there are many of us who have fun with the best of the two celebrations, always keeping our roots and traditions.
Tips for decorating and preparing
To decorate the bread of the dead, it is always nice to have cempasuchil flowers that give aroma and color to the place. Or you can also put it on the altar of the dead and wait a few hours or days (according to your tradition) to eat it.
One of the tips before preparing this dead vegan bread is that you have plenty of time to make it since it requires a lot of patience (I repeat, a lot of patience, really) for the yeast times to be respected. We give the advice of taking advantage of the sun or a pot to put our dough or yeast close and grow faster, but remember that it is not good to be checking every few minutes how the dough is rising, since the air and temperature changes make Let the dough go down. It is also not good that the pot is at high temperature since it can make the dough a little cooked, and it is not what we want.
Every time you cook something with dough and yeast, remember that the doors and windows of the place where you are should be closed, prevent air currents from ruining our recipe.
Another tip is that you cook this without being hungry since the smell during the preparation will make you more hungry, and the wait to be able to eat it is quite long.
Almost three years ago, during the beginning of our blog Rock and Vegan I uploaded a video to YouTube, where I show how vegan dead bread is made, today I retract using commercial margarine for the recipe since its origin is completely modified. Understanding that vegan dead bread has large amounts of sugar by the original recipe, but we should avoid using ingredients such as margarine for vegan recipes and for cooking in general. It’ sIt’s not something from the other world, but my ideal right now is to eat food without preservatives. The thing with commercial margarine is difficult to find.