Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Día de todos los santos

Like I have said before, we don’t really have Halloween or anything special these days in Norway, but I do like the Spanish version of it.

Día de todos los santos – means literally the day of all the spirits, and is the day for remembrance of the people that has passed. It’s not a day of stuff happening around in the city streets, it’s more a family day where the families get together for some quality time.

It’s common to bring flowers to the graves and eat a special cake. Every region in Spain seems to have different traditions for this day, but for now I will explain how it is done here in Cataluña, north-east of Spain.

They typically celebrate this day with a castañada with boniatos al horno, and panellets with a sweet Moscatel wine

Translation anyone?
  • Castañada: chest nuts roasted on a barbecue. 
  • Boniatos: some kind of yams baked in the oven  or on a barbeque
  • Panellets: some kind of cake/sweet, originally something similar to marzipan rolled in pine nuts. Now there are a vast variety of different panellets with different tasts.
  • Moscatell: a naturally sweet wine made from Moscatel-grapes

Now this is a bank holiday I like! Celebrating lost loved ones with really tasty stuff. 

I brought the camera to a bakery so I could show what these panellets are. 
The original one looks like this: 

The rest of the assortment: Panellets of chestnuts, lemon, chocolate, praliné, coconut, coffee etc. etc.

Round and about in the city small stalls are set up to sell grilled chestnuts and boniatos.

Since I am all about experiencing new things in this new country of mine, I bought chestnuts, boniatos, panellets and Moscatel... 
The wine is very sweet, too sweet for my taste actually. 
The panellets are good, but not something I would  crave (there's no chocolate in them!!) 
Chestnuts can't go wrong, they are lovely! I baked them in the oven at 200 degrees celcius for about 10-15 minutes.
And the boniatos as well.
After about one hour in the oven at 200 degrees celcius, they come out soft and sweet, and are eaten just like that, with the chestnuts.

Boniato & chestnuts
Just lovely!


  1. I'm going to try doing the Boniatos and the chestnuts that way, thanks for sharing! I was just wondering if the Boniatos are in fact sweet potato? They look like the variety we get in Fiji.

  2. All the food sounds great! It's interesting to read about other countries traditions. I like the idea of remembering loved ones, it's really sweet. Glad you had a good day!

    ps. For Halloween I watched 'Nightmare before Christmas', but they also suggested The Addams Family, Casper and the Charlie Brown Halloween special :)

  3. Vanisha, I had to google it :) I found a page that said: boniato is less sweet and fluffier than sweet potato, but can be substituted in recipes! I guess they come from the same family..

    Many colours- I love the part of the remebering loved ones too! Thanks for the movie list!! Will have a look ;)

  4. Ohh that's interesting! You learn something new everyday, and in the blog world, heaps more!