November 1st, 2012
November first begins the Dia de los Muertos (also known as “Day of the Dead”) festivities with All Saints Day in which the deceased children are honored and remembered. November second All Souls Day is for the remembrance of the adult dead. Dia de los Muertos combines these days to celebrate the the deceased and enjoy their memories.
A hot cup of masa gruel known as Ix-pa-xa (pronounced Ish-pa-sha), otherwise known as Atole made from purple corn is used to nourish and warm the spirits when they return and/or when they leave on these special days.
Here’s the recipe for this tasty Maya treat: Ixpaxa
3lbs purple corn (not on the cob) – this is to be left 1-2 days to “spoil” while being softened in the water.
1 tin condensed milk
1 habanero pepper
Blend corn and some of the water with condensed milk and habanero pepper.
Strain to remove husks,
Boil and add sugar to taste.
Historical note: Before the invention of condensed milk, ripe plantains were used to sweeten this dish. Hence for authentic taste substitute ripe plantains for condensed milk.
November 1st, 2012
Here’s an insight into the real cross-culture Maya Halloween thats celebrated November 1st and 2nd here in Belize. Inspired by Latin tradition of the entire Central American Maya region, “El Dia de los Muertos” is a day to celebrate, remember and prepare special foods in honor of those who have departed. It is believed that the spirit of the dead visit their families on October 31 and leave on November 2
In order to celebrate, the families make altars and place ofrendas (offerings) of the traditional and favorite food of the departed, candles, incense, fruits, candy and most importantly a photo of the departed soul is placed on the altar.
October 31st, 2012
Tata Duende translates to grandfather demon. He is depicted as an old mischievous character that is very short, with backward feet, wears a tall pointy hat and has both of his thumbs missing. If you ever saw him you couldn’t show him your hands as he’d surely cut off your thumbs. Parents also warned their children that if they skipped classes, Tata Duende would lure them into the jungle and they would never be seen again.
Tata Duende was also to blame when weird things happened around farms. He was to blame for destroying the neighbour’s crops. And once in a while he would braid a horse’s hair and it would have to be cut completely as it couldn’t be loosened.
Sisemite or Sisimito is a tall hairy monster-like creature equivalent to Big Foot. Usually depicted as being a male, the Sisemite lived in Caves and survived by eating raw game meat. What he was commonly known for was kidnapping women and taking them to live with him. He would then force them to be his partner and bear children.
The Sisemite was said to commonly roam the river banks at dusk, therefore women were always warned by their mothers never to stay out late when they went to wash clothes at the river (a common practice in the old times).
La Llorona (pronounced la Yo-ro-na)
La Llorona translates to weeping woman. She is depicted as a tall and slender gorgeous woman with long black hair that reached her waist. No one could ever see her face unless they caught up to her.
There are several variations of what she did; one of the most popular versions was that she lured children to rivers found deep in the jungle, hoping they got lost. Legend says that she lost her children near a river and she did the same to others as a way of revenge.
La Llorona was also known for luring young men on their way home late from bars. Young men were warned by their parents not to stay out late drinking since if La Llorona caught up with them, they would never be seen again. La Llorona would charm drunk men into the forest and when they were far away from the town, she would show them her ugly and distorted face as she let off a shrieking cry. The men would either immediately die or fall terribly sick for weeks.
Info credit: http://www.belizeadventure.ca/get-to-know-belizean-folklore
October 29th, 2012
As we continue our Countdown of the Maya End of the World (53 days to go!), what better way to start off this week’s bang than with this scrumptious Maya-inspired dish:
Corn Salbutes topped with Chicken (Shredded), Escabeche Onions (Pickled), lettuce-lime Chiffonade, tomato Concasse and queso Blanco (Crumbled).
October 25th, 2012
Belize is home to a melting pot of cultural and contemporary culinary delights. Tantalizing mixtures of Caribbean spices, African vegetables and even Central American cooking styles can be found throughout the country. Even while living abroad, Belizeans find a way to highlight their culture. Check out what these proud Belizeans are cooking up in Los Angeles and what the LA Times has to say about their food in their “Little Belize” review.
October 20th, 2012
An important etho at Ka’ana is to be eco-conscious. This, of course, finds it’s way into our design aesthetic. Typically, we like to recycle objects in new ways and use the what we have on the grounds as much as possible (Have you seen our Organic Garden?) We are big on details; they make all the difference, right? See more below or read more about our Accommodations.
1. Fresh flowers in every room picked from the grounds.
2. Palmetto sticks are used throughout the resort, providing great texture and color.
3. Antique explorer objects: compasses, telescopes (Some found nearby!) and others from our owners’ collection to evoke a sense of adventures past.
4. Bamboo, cut and joined together, used for headboards and lamp fixtures.
5. Refurbished wood frames of villa door.
6. Antiqued custom-made metal doors for our Private Villas.
8. Antique Spanish books.
9. Ikat – Typical Central American patterned Fabrics.
10. Outdoor Showers!
October 19th, 2012
Sweeten up your weekend with our Banana-Hazel Martini!
Banana-Hazel Martini: Banana, Frangelico Liqueur and Vodka served Martini style.
1 Oz. Frangelico Liqueur
½ Banana (Ripened)
2 Oz. Vodka
3 Cubes Ice
Add ¼ Banana into mixer and liquify. Add 1 Oz. Banana, Frangelico Liqueur, Ice and Vodka into shaker; shake thoroughly – and pour into Martini glass. Garnish with Banana slices or Cherry, Enjoy!
October 17th, 2012
NYtimes article on travelers seeking bespoke itineraries, “There is a surge of people looking for the meaningful experience..” Be sure to check out our meaningful experiences and how you can participate here .
Read more of the article here.
October 12th, 2012
Here at Ka’ana, we grow all kinds of fruits and vegetables including broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, lettuce, arugula, bell peppers, tomatoes and potatoes, as well as hot chiles and spicy herbs. Our fruits are of the tropical variety including bananas, papayas, watermelon, pineapple and local exotic fruits such as mammy apples and dragon fruit.
Most of our fruits and vegetables grow all year round. Carrots grow between August and January while broccoli and cauliflower grow between May and August.
We create our own jams and infusions using the fruits and also pickle the vegetables in-house. Produce from our organic garden is incorporated in all of our recipes at La Ceiba to ensure that our guests are always eating healthily and organically.