Just as its legacy incorporates traditions from various festivals that celebrate harvest and honor the dead, October 31st is known for many festive Halloween activities and foods. On All Hallow’s Eve, one of its alternate names, children go trick or treating in full costume (including bags for the candy and confections they will be collecting along the way) while adults attend costume parties. Such events call for meals and delicacies that reflect the spirit (pardon the pun, intended) of the holiday.
For trick or treating, candies, chocolates and confections are expected to be given out. While one can easily buy these commercially, the home cook may prefer to serve or share homemade treats for guests. This may include chocolate-inspired treats, caramel apples, candied corn-topped cupcakes, and the like. Caramel apples are favorite Halloween treats, with a chewy or thick caramel coating that shatters as one bites into the apple. These are easily made at home using ready-made caramel coatings, caramel candies or one’s special caramel coating recipe. In similar fashion, these delicacies can be served at gatherings with Halloween themes. The idea is to use ingredients typically associated with Halloween—apples, chocolates, pumpkin, corn (caramel or candy).
Creative cooks also use novelty shaped candies like eyeballs, skulls, worms, and other creepy designs to make Halloween-inspired confections. Children in particular are fond of these treats and delight in the “scary” foods which are merely yummier representations of the real thing. For example, a cup of soil with a glowing worm emerging from underneath is a common design. Crushed chocolate cookies become the soil while the glow worms are just jelly candies complete with the wormy skin.
The treats you can do are limited only by your imagination—make ghostly meringue cookies, spooky pies, mummy potatoes, and more. Cupcakes are also perfect vehicles for fun and ghouly expressions—candied corn, licorice, cherries, sugar sprinkles, jellybeans, Halloween-inspired pipings and other edible decors can be piled on them to create the ultimate Halloween mini-cake. Make at least one of these delicacies in addition to your typical Halloween menu. Both kids and adults will love them.On the other hand, traditional delicacies also abound during Halloween. An example is the spiced soul cakes, which are given to visitors during All Saint’s Day or All Soul’s Day. Others make unfilled cream puffs, pumpkin pie, pan de muerto (bread of the dead) and other recipes that remember and nourish the living and from beyond.