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Like Water for Chocolate

Like Water for Chocolate - Like Water for Chocolate...

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Like Water for Chocolate Traditions Does your family have any traditions? Do you eat certain foods for certain holidays? Traditional values and family are important in many cultures, but they seem to play an especially important role to Mexicans (Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia). One of the most important parts of their culture is food. Much of Mexican’s daily routines and traditions revolve around the ritual of preparing the food and eating it (Mexican Cuisine and Cooking). In Laura Esquivel’s novel, Like Water for Chocolate, the food (recipes) and tradition are the main part of the book just as they are the main part of the Mexican tradition. Esquivel’s novel is very different from most books. Her novel incorporates recipes into the book in order to tell a story. These recipes, however, are not only formulas, but they are memories and traditions being passed down from generation to generation. Each chapter begins with a new recipe, and these recipes are used to tell Tita’s life story, the main character and narrator in Like Water for Chocolate. Tita becomes the focus of her family. This occurs because she is most closely connected with food preparation. This closeness to the food is seen from the first “scene” in the book where she is born. “Tita made her entrance into this world, prematurely, right there on the kitchen table amid the smells of simmering noodle soup, thyme, bay leaves, and cilantro, steamed milk, garlic, and of course, onion.” (Esquivel 5-6). This shows Tita’s connection to food which grows through out the book. Tita prepares certain dishes for special occasions and at different times of the year. Not only does Tita prepare certain dishes for different occasions, but Mexican’s also prepare different dishes for certain occasions. For example, a tradition for a wealthy Mexican family is what is called a country gathering. This is a gathering of family members. At this gathering, they began with a breakfast of fruit, eggs, beans, chilaquiles, coffee, milk, and pastries. They would then go out on horseback after their typical breakfast (Lomnitz and Perez-Lizaur 187). Some of the holidays that they make special dishes for include: Dia de la Candelaria, day of the dead, and Christmas. Dia de la Candelaria is the day that marks the end of
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