Halloween is a holiday truly beloved by all, regardless of age. What is there not to love? The food, the costumes, the decorations, or all those combined into a great Halloween Party.
No Halloween Party can be successful without a frightfully good selection of eats, drinks, and Halloween treats, so send out those invitations, these recipes will get your soiree off to a howling good start.
It isn’t Halloween without the pumpkins, so here’s a yummy good recipe for
MINI SPICED PUMPKINS
1-cup all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp. pumpkin pie spice
½ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
⅓ cup unsalted butter
½ cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
½ cup sour cream
Whisk flour with pie spice, baking power, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl, beat butter and sugar with a hand mixer on medium speed until fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and sour cream in alternating batches. Spoon into 12 mini Bundt molds coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Invert and cool completely.
Make glaze by mixing 1 ½ cup confectioner sugar, 2 tbsp. melted unsalted butter, 2 tbsp. water and orange food coloring to desired coloring. Pour glaze over pumpkins, spreading to gently cover completely, and allow to dry. Stick a licorice whip piece on top to make a stem.
My fondest childhood memory is when, as a 5 years old, I dressed as Mighty Mouse for Halloween. While this tiny avenger was before the time for most of you, suffice it to say he was THE GREATEST rodent crime stopper to ever live – and I was proud to wear his cape.
This next recipe is guaranteed to make whiskered fans of everyone. So, in the words of the great Mouse-keteer himself “Here I Come to Save the Day”… with
3 oz. cream cheese – softened
2 tbsp. unsalted butter – softened
1-cup confectioners sugar
3 ½ oz. semi sweet chocolate – melted and cooled
2 – 9 inch baked chocolate cake layers (store bought or home made) – warmed
4 oz. white chocolate – chopped
7 oz. extra-bittersweet chocolate – chopped
½ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
12 licorice whips – cut into 3-inch lengths
In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese with the butter, ½ cup confectioners sugar and the melted semi-sweet chocolate. Crumble and add 1 ½ of the chocolate cake layers and beat at low speed until incorporated. Roll level tablespoons of the mixture into 3 dozen ovals, tapering one end to shape the nose. Arrange “mice” on wax paper lined baking sheet, insert a toothpick into tail end, refrigerate until firm – about 30 minutes.
Crumble the remaining ½ layer of chocolate cake onto a rimmed baking sheet and bake at 275 degrees for 30 minutes – stirring frequently – until dry and crumbly. Finely crush crumbs.
In a bowl, heat the white and bittersweet chocolate in a microwave until ¾ melted. Stir until completely melted – cool to 90 degrees.
Working quickly, pick up each “mouse” by the toothpick, dip in the chocolate allowing excess to drip off, roll in the crushed crumbs, press 2 pumpkin seeds on for ears. Refrigerate 20 minute.
Combine remaining ½ cup of confectioners sugar with enough water to make a stiff glaze. Using a plastic bag with small cut in corner, pipe eyes onto each mouse. Remove toothpick and insert licorice whip for tail (HINT: slightly warm licorice in the microwave to make pliable enough to shape tail into cute twists).
WARNING: Highly addictive treat – Please enjoy responsibly!
Leave the apple bobbing for the kids and head straight for these
14 oz. caramel pieces – unwrapped
2 tbsp. milk
Remove stems from apples and insert sticks. Butter a baking sheet.
Place caramels and milk in a bowl and microwave 2 minutes on high – stirring once. Allow to cool slightly. Roll each apple quickly in caramel sauce until well coated – optionally roll in chopped nuts – place on baking sheet to set.
You know a cake is Spook-tacularly good when even a camera isn’t fast enough to catch them before they’re gone, but you’ll be haunted by how good they were!
GHOSTLY LEMON CAKE POPS
One 11-12 oz. plain pound cake
4 tbsp. unsalted butter – softened
1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
1 tbsp. lemon juice
½ cup confectioner’s sugar
18 Popsicle sticks
½ lb. white chocolate – chopped
Edible decorating pens
Crumble pound cake. Add butter, lemon zest, lemon juice and sugar and blend with hand mixer until combined. Divide into 18 mounds. Shape each mound into a ghost, ease Popsicle stick into bottom and refrigerate until firm.
Melt chocolate in microwave until ¾ melted. Stir until completely melted. Working quickly, dip each ghost into chocolate allowing excess to drip off. Stand upright in Styrofoam base until set. Use edible pens to draw faces on each ghost.
Dying for something savory after all those sweets? Try these wickedly good
SPICY CHEDDAR WITCH FINGERS
½ lb. extra-sharp cheddar cheese
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
1 tsp. kosher salt
½ tsp. cayenne pepper
1-cup all-purpose flour
1 large egg yolk mixed with 1 tbsp. water
36 almond slices
In a food processor, grate the cheddar cheese. Add butter, salt and cayenne and process until smooth. Add flour and pulse until incorporated. Turn onto a work surface and knead until smooth.
Divide the dough into 36 balls. Roll each into 4-inch finger. Arrange onto parchment paper lined baking sheets, use a knife to make “knuckles”, brush with egg wash and press an almond slice onto one end as a “fingernail”.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes until puffed and golden brown. Cool before serving.
And don’t forget to wash it all down with mug of apple cider – or for the over 21 set –
WARM HARVEST MARTINI
2 oz. apple cider
2 oz. vodka
½ oz. vanilla liqueur
2 tbsp. caramel sauce
Combine cider, vodka and vanilla liqueur. Microwave 1 to 1½ minutes. Dunk the rim of a glass into caramel sauce and let drip down sides (Want a spookier twist? Add red food coloring to sauce to give an eerie Halloween feel).
Add the warm liquid and sprinkle with a pinch of cinnamon.
Have a Boo-licious Halloween!
Karen Foley is a professional freelance photographer who loves sharing the joy of her art with others. See more of Karen’s work at karenfoleyphotography.com. Images copyright Karen Foley via Dreamstime.com.