Fiambre is a group of meat origin and already processed. Among the foods included under the term of cold cuts are sausages, sausages , meat pies, etc. As a rule they are cut into slices and eaten in the form of sandwiches or sandwiches and are also served on a sausage table (usually accompanied by boiled egg) as a snack. When accompanied with bread it can be called a companion. Also called cold cuts to the remains of a barbecue cut and served cold.


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  • 1 History of the Deli
  • 2 Guatemala
  • 3 Luncheon and religion
  • 4 Mortuary Rituals
  • 5 Traditional Cold Meat Recipe
    • 1 Ingredients
    • 2 Preparation
  • 6 Sources

History of the Deli

Meals from the time of the deceased are very significant in all cultures, because they symbolize the coexistence between living beings and beings from beyond. In Mesoamerica, the meals of the deceased were already outstanding in the [[pre-Hispanic era]], during the commemoration of the days of communication with ancestors and ancestors.

The Spaniards who conquered the territory commemorated these festivities on November 1 and 2, established by the Church around the 4th century. At that time, special meals were prepared, especially cold and with a strong heritage of Arab culture. With the process of crossbreeding and hybridization of cultural elements, the Guatemalan population of the late sixteenth century created a special cold dish, to be eaten during the annual mortuary celebrations: the cold cuts

In the middle of the seventeenth century, the cold cut was rooted throughout Guatemala as a meal for the day of the dead, it was already mentioned in cookbooks from the early seventeenth century. In particular, the cold cuts became established as “food of the dead” in the 19th century.


This food can establish the entire identity of the Guatemalan :

  • The use of vegetables and their seasoning is an evident inheritance of the pre-Hispanic world
  • The use of different types of meat and sausages, of Spanish descent
  • The use of cheeses, capers, olives and other spices, of authentic Arab heritage.

The custom of eating cold cuts is one of the characteristics of the gastronomy of Guatemala, and the creativity of the anonymous Guatemalan cooks has given it a special and national touch.

Luncheon and religion

Religions around the world commemorate the souls of the dead. They, even if they are not called that way, as spirit or breath, must come to inhabit a specific place, which can be heaven or hell, depending on the type of religion it is.

This ritual celebration symbolizes the beginning of all religion with its own and unrepeatable myths and rites. This commemoration implies a very deep worship, which has deep roots in the history of each civilization.

Like all religion, Christianity creates dogmas and in each of them the commemoration of the day of the ancestors-souls, the first and second days of November, is specifically manifested. The celebrations take place throughout the Christian world, from the Mediterranean region, the Mesopotamian part, including the countries of northern Europe, Asia and Africa.

Souls can be eminently good (the ethical) or malefic (the emic); that is to say, that when coming into contact with the individual they can help or reject him. These souls are formed by a fundamental process that is death.

When a person dies the anima can go to heaven or hell ; This is where the first great change occurs, death transforms the soul into a soul. The souls of the dead are wandering and the living want to contact them, from there the cult and the rite to the souls of the dead are born. In a rite to the dead what is important is the change from soul to soul and then in the process of the historical development of society, from soul to spirit. Thus, the individual soul becomes a collective spirit; In this sense, religion is what makes it collective, what is called in the language of the Anthropology of Religion, “it is loaded with mana.” A person laden with manna becomes a saint.

Mortuary Rituals

The oldest ceremonies are rituals to the dead performed in sacred places such as dolmens and menhirs, the Egyptian, Mayan, and Hindu pyramids. In Guatemala are the great Mayan caves. In this civilization, the rituals were aimed at seeking souls through special rites: prayers, food, drink and music dedicated to the souls of the dead.

The celebration of November 2, day of the deceased, is commemorated in Guatemala from the sixteenth century. One of the most deeply rooted popular expressions are the blessed souls, white and beautiful spirits that are the good saints, that is, the ethical ones. According to this Christian belief, the souls leave purgatory or heaven to look for their relatives to be with them. This allows the interrelation with the ancestors (the dead) and the living, those of the world of the sacred with those of the world of the profane. According to legend, the souls only appear that day, they go out with candles in hand, to stroll through the streets of the cities and fields, during the first two days of November at twelve at night.

Generally, people in their houses make small altars with the photograph of their dead, with water, flowers, cypress and the fire of candles and candles. The graves are adorned that day with flowers of the dead, cypress and waxed paper wreaths. Food in the grave is another important element in this commemoration of the deceased. In addition to eating, drinking and smoking in the grave, to share with those who “left.”

Among Guatemalan foods are mainly the cabeceras or Canshul, which is composed of vegetables, mainly: güisquil, perulero and güicoy. This plate is so named because it is placed at the head of the grave. The sweet of ayote, as well as the jocote in sweet are other dishes that they prepare for the deceased. They place candles or candles and a glass of water on the graves. The central axes of nature are: food, water and fire, and the extraordinary cold cut.

Traditional Cold Meat Recipe


  • 12 beets, 10 carrots, 1 cabbage, 2 cauliflowers, 12 pacayas, 2 pounds of peeled crab,
  • 3 pounds of green beans, 6 chiles chamborotes, 1 dozen radishes, 1 pound of ham, 1 pound of salami,
  • 1 pound of bologna, 1 pound of salted chorizo, 1 pound of red chorizo, 1 pound of black chorizo,
  • 1 pound of sausage, 1 pound of salted tongue, 1 whole chicken, 1 can of asparagus with water
  • 1/2 pound capers, 1 pound pickled onions, 1 pound stuffed olives,
  • 1 layered cheese, 1 pound of striped Zacapa cheese, 1 bottle of vinegar,
  • 1 foreign lettuce, 1 piece of fresh peeled ginger, 1 tablespoon of capers,
  • 1/4 teaspoon anise, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper,
  • 6 young onions with stem, 1 tablespoon of prepared mustard 1 bunch of parsley,
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder 1/4 teaspoon white pepper 1 celery stalk 1/2 onion,
  • 4 boiled eggs cut into slices,


One day before preparing the traditional cold cuts, prepare the tanning. Cook the beets. Peel them, cut them into squares and let them cool completely. Peel nine of the carrots, cut into 1/4 ″ squares. steam with little water. cool in cool water and drain. Cut the cabbage into 1/2 ″ squares. drown them in boiling water, cool in cool water and drain. Peel the pacayas, cut into 1/2 ″ pieces and cook like the other vegetables. Fade the green beans.

Remove the tips. cut into small pieces and cook. Cook the peas and cool in cool water. Make sure to drain the vegetables well and transfer them to a non-metallic bowl.

Boil the vinegar for five minutes in a non-aluminum saucepan, let cool and add to the vegetables. With the help of a wooden trowel, move the vegetables until they mix well with the vinegar. Cover with a clean blanket and let stand at room temperature, moving occasionally with the trowel.

On the day the meat is prepared, cook the whole chicken in a liter of water with the celery stalk. the half onion, the remaining carrot cut into pieces. salt and pepper.

Remove the chicken from the broth and reserve. Remove the gall, giblets, legs, and bone very carefully to remove the cartilage.

Cut the chicken into pieces and let cool. Degrease the chicken broth and strain it. Cook each chorizo ​​separately. Peel, cool, and cut into thin discs. With a salty tongue. Sausage ham and bologna in small squares.

Wash the tanned onions. olives and 1/2 pound of capers in enough cool water and drain. Prepare the “caldillo” by removing as much vinegar as possible from the tanning and place half in the blender bowl.

Add ginger, dried mustard, and prepared mustard. the two tablespoons of capers. parsley leaves. anise, black pepper, white pepper and water from the asparagus. Blend perfectly and strain into a separate container.

Return the solids from the strainer to the blender bowl, add half of the lettuce (save the rest for decoration). the chicken broth and the onions with stem. Blend again and if necessary help with more vinegar from the tanning.

Strain again and discard the solids. Mix the liquid well and season with salt. Add the cold cuts and chicken to the tanning, then the harvested olives, capers, and onions.

Mix with your hands trying not to break the vegetables and meats. Cut the cheese into layers and add them. Distribute the “caldillo” over the entire surface of the cold cuts and mix for the last time.

Serve on plates and garnish with chiles chamborotes, lettuce leaves. hard-boiled egg. chopped radishes. asparagus and cheese from Zacapa. Refrigerate immediately.


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