All Souls day, which falls on the 2nd November, is a significant event in the Catholic calendar which pays homage to the dead, especially those whose souls are stuck in purgatory.
In Napoli, a city obsessed by superstition, shrines and catacombs, All Saints day (1st Nov) and All Souls day (31st Oct) present an opportunity to pay respects to deceased relatives by visiting graves and tombs. Older, alarmingly morbid practices are still carried out where church crypts are lit up and coffin lids are opened or removable glass panels taken out so that relatives of the decaying can see their faces, caress the corpses and make the sign of the cross over their head. This of course is no longer common practice and remains a ritual for the religiously devout.
In Napoli, every event calls for an edible homage. Around the time of All Saints & All Souls day, sugared skulls and skeletons appear and temp children for a pittance.
Here is my version of Torrone dei Morti (Torrone of the dead), in which layers of chocolate and nuts give a sweet taste to an otherwise bitter remembrance.
Slices can be wrapped and gifted – why not?! 🙂