Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.
William Shakespeare The Tragedy of Macbeth
For the past few years, my family meets up at my house for our annual Halloween howl. We usually set up a crime scene in our living room and in the guest bathroom. The dining room is haunted and infested with rats and spiders. A graveyard, ruled by the living dead, dominates the backyard. Everyone is in costume, and we all have a great time.
And, yes, food and drink abound.
Planning the party and transforming my house and yard into a horror mecca is a daunting task, so I try to design fun Halloween party food without creating additional stress. Usually, I’m working right up to the last-minute preparing for the party, so this year I decided to use our normal recipes and mold them into something fun and interesting.
On the menu: witches brew, wicked chocolate martini, chilled brains, swamp salad, devilishly ghouled potato salad, meat head, spider eggs, skull cake, pock face, peanut butter oak bars, cheese dip, and cup cakes. I made a dark chocolate skull cake, but we hacked it up and ate it before I could take a photo. Maybe next year.
Halloween Fun Food Recipes
We usually make this punch recipe whenever we have holiday celebrations, which is why we usually call it holiday punch.
- ½ gallon orange sherbet
- 32 ounces orange drink
- 2 cans ginger ale
- 1 can 7-up
- 1 orange (optional)
- gummy worms, spiders, or eye balls
Put orange sherbet into a small cauldron, and pour orange drink, ginger ale, and 7-up over sherbet. Slice orange very thin and add to punch. Serve in 4-6 ounce cups. Garnish with gummy candy before serving.
I use my mom’s famous crab or shrimp mold for the chilled brains.
- 1 recipe crab or shrimp mold
- black food color
- brain mold
Make the crab mold per the recipe. Add one drop of black food color and mix well. Repeat until the mold has a grayish tint similar to brain matter (about 3 drops). Pour into a buttered brain mold and refrigerate overnight. Serve with crackers.
My dad had fun with this dish.
- 1 recipe red potato salad
- 4-6 long sweet red peppers
- 1 black olive
Make the red potato salad according to the recipe. Chill until ready to eat. Before serving, cut two peppers for the devil horns, one for the nose, and one for the tongue. Use the remaining pepper to cut pepper strips for the ears and mustache. Slice the olive in half; one for each eye. Fill the hole with a small piece of pepper or pimento.
Everyone has fun with deviled eggs at Halloween. Spider eggs are easy to make and fun.
- 1 recipe deviled eggs without the paprika
- 18 black olives
Prepare the deviled eggs according to the recipe, and refrigerate for about 1 hour. Do not garnish eggs with paprika. Slice six black olives in half. Press one half into each egg to form the body of the spider. Slice the remaining olives into 6 strips per olive. Press 3 strips on each side of the spider body. A separate strip can be turned upside down and pressed at the end of the body forming a scorpion tale.
A different take on my mom’s carrot and raisin salad.
- ¾ pound carrots, peeled and shredded (about 2 very large carrots)
- ½ cup raisins
- 1½ tablespoon cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 8 gummy worms
- 4 gummy eyeballs
Combine carrots and raisins in a bowl. Mix vinegar, sugar and mayonnaise thoroughly and add to carrot and raisin mixture. Mix well and refrigerate until chilled. Before serving add gummy worms and eyeballs.
I think everyone who throws a Halloween party has a version of meat head. Makes sure the meat is sliced paper-thin to give the skull a “fleshly” look.
- 4 or 5 tablespoons cream cheese
- 8 slices prosciutto
- 1 pound mortadella
- 1 pound hard salami
- 1 pound ham
- 1 pound provolone
- 2 extra-large olives
- roasted red peppers
- hard rolls
- 1 plastic skull
Spread cream cheese over skull and face. Place prosciutto on cream cheese and layer. Use a dab of cream cheese to hold the olives in the eye sockets. Arrange remaining meats and cheese around the skull. Serve with roasted red peppers on hard rolls.