For the first time in a while, it seems that Fall activities are returning full speed ahead for many communities, schools and churches. And that’s a good thing. I love seeing the roadside signs this time of year and local event listings for Fall Festivals, Corn Mazes, Trunk-or-Treat, (Boone-Boo!) and similar opportunities for families and friends to get back out and enjoy life together. While Halloween itself often has different, if not more sinister connotations for some, the majority of us here in the High Country have usually observed it as a fun and innocent occasion for kids, as well as adults, who like to step out of their usual persona and into that of another character for a day or even a few hours. I recall one year, my husband and I were invited to a “dress-up” party, so we went as a priest and a nun, all the while fully respectful of our Catholic friends who approved of our attire and said there was still hope for me, especially. It should all be in fun, from the costumes down to the decorations and food. Let’s dig back in the archives and bring back a few favorites from the past for this year’s Halloween celebrations.
Kool Witches Brew
1 pack orange Kool-Aid, unsweetened
1 pack grape Kool-Aid, unsweetened
2 cups sugar
3 qt. cold water
1 qt. bottle chilled Sprite, 7-UP or ginger ale
Mix Kool-Aid packets together with the sugar and water in large pitcher. Before serving, add beverage of choice. Serve over ice.
Tip: Serve the drink in a large black bowl to simulate a cauldron. Add a “frozen hand” ice cube to creep out your guests: Freeze some of the punch or Mountain Dew in a clear plastic food service glove and tie tightly with a bread-wrapper tie.
Or use water tinted with your choice of food coloring to make it really stand out in the punchbowl. Carefully cut iced “hand” from glove after frozen; place into punch bowl when ready to serve.
Halloween Spiders(Recipe makes one spider, repeat process as desired.
2 Tbs. smooth peanut butter
2 Tbs. powdered sugar
2 Tbs. graham cracker crumbs
2 Tbs. coconut
Mix peanut butter, sugar and cracker crumbs together and form into a ball. Divide ball into 2 parts to form 2 balls, 1 slightly smaller than the other. Roll balls in coconut and place smaller ball on top of larger one. The smaller ball with be the head, the larger one the abdomen. Add licorice for legs and raisins for eyes.
Spider Web Dip
1 (16 oz.) jar black bean dip
1 (12 oz.) container guacamole
¼ cup sour cream
1 cup shredded lettuce
1 cup cheddar Cheese, shredded
½ cup chopped tomato
Spread bean dip onto center of large platter, leaving 1 to 2 inches around edge of platter. Carefully cover bean dip with guacamole. Spoon sour cream into resalable plastic food bag. Snip off corner. Pipe sour cream in 4 concentric circles onto guacamole. Drag toothpick or knife through sour cream from center outward to make spider web design. Layer lettuce, cheese and tomatoes on edge of platter. Serve with tortilla chips.
1 pkg. white chocolate chips
1 pkg. Nutter-Butter Peanut Butter Cookies
Small pack of mini chocolate chips
Melt chips in double boiler (or small pan over larger pan of simmering water), stirring occasionally. Dip cookies into chocolate, covering completely. Place on waxed paper to cool. You many need to brush ends with pastry brush dipped in coating to cover entire area. While coating is still warm, place two small chips on each cookie for eyes.
5 medium size Red Delicious apples
¼ cup orange juice
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 pkg. miniature marshmallows
Core and cut each apple into wedges; brush each wedge with orange juice to keep from turning brown, and spread one side of each wedge evenly with creamy peanut butter. Press four marshmallows into peanut butter on half of wedges; top with remaining wedges, peanut butter side down. Makes about 35 servings.
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
12 pretzel rods
Orange and/or white candy melts
Line baking sheet with waxed paper. Melt semisweet chocolate in top of double boiler over hot, not boiling, water. Remove from heat. Dip pretzel rods into chocolate, spooning chocolate to coat about ¾ of each pretzel. Place on prepared baking sheet. Refrigerate until chocolate is firm.
Melt candy melts as directed. Remove from heat. Dip coated pretzels quickly into melted coating to cover about ¼ of each pretzel.
Place on baking sheet. Immediately top with sprinkles. Refrigerate until chocolate is firm.
Tie ends with ribbons.