Digidaughter and I traveled today to Rosemead, CA to pick up new molds and some other supplies, like the papel picado banners. If you want to buy Dia de los Muertos supplies, the folks at Reigh Trading Company are a delight. Their website allows you to buy pretty much everything and it is educational to visit it. Talking to the owner's father, Bob, he told me that they now ship to every state in the United States and this year alone did at least 10 shipments to England and several more to Australia - each year, more and more people are ordering their items. He said they can do rush shipments - in fact, he was getting ready to overnight about a dozen pre-made sugar skulls to New York overnight!
Saturday, October 27, 2007
Making Sugar Skulls - Part I
UPDATE: Checked on them this morning - they are good and hard. Part II will come later today!
Tonight the Digidaughter and I rolled up our sleeves to start making las calaveras de azucar, or the sugar skulls for Day of the Dead. It is pretty much an easy task - just messy. The trick is to have just the right amount of liquid and a humid day is a no-no, since the sugar must "take" and harden overnight.
You get to mix up sugar, powdered egg whites, and water into something that is the consistency of beach sand that is wet enough to make sand castles. Press the mixture into pre-bought plastic molds and carefully pop them out onto paper plates. Below is part of our "army" that we made tonight - 31 in all! Tomorrow my friend, The Plant Whisperer, is coming over and we will make royal icing that we color with food paste to decorate the skulls.
I also bought today two new calaveras or calacas, which are the traditional skeleton figures associated with Day of the Dead. These are meant to be skeletons in scenes from everyday life and are purposefully humorous. I did not have an Elvis one for my collection, but now I do, as seen below. You can also make your own with Sculpey, which should be available in any craft store.