Whether you’re hosting a blowout party or just entertaining a few neighbors after the trick-or-treating is complete, here are a few ghoulish and festive ideas including décor, specialty drinks and hors d’oeuvres. Happy Halloween!!
Clip branches of bittersweet and swag them down the middle of your table.
Add branches of freshly cut fall leaves, apples, pumpkins. Gourds.
Spray paint some long cut branches black, stick them in a tall urn. Buy a few black crows in the Halloween store and clip them to the branches. Maybe add some cobwebs for an eerie effect.
Hang fishing line in your foyer at different levels. Attach orange, white and red Japanese lanterns at different levels for a beautiful entranceway.
Rubber snakes on sofa backs and tabletops.
Attach plastic spiders to hurricanes filled with black sand (pet store aquarium section) and black pillar candles (these are hard to find- buy on line!)
Bunches of dried corn, bales of hay, cornstalks, gourds, ivy, primeval candelabras with black taper candles, bunches of grapes, any old tapestry you may have around, burlap, plastic/rubber worms, insects, mice. Line a tray with candy corn for passing drinks.
The key to décor, I have found, is to make it look abundant. In this case, more is better!
Orange Satin Cosmo- makes 20 drinks
8 c. vodka
2.5 c. mango juice
2.5 c. cointreau or triple sec
1.25 c. fresh lime juice
7 T. superfine sugar
Shake and strain into frosted cocktail glasses
Garnish with black licorice stick and black plastic spider
Dry Ice- see note below
5 lady apples
1 bunch green seedless grapes
1 bunch red seedless grapes
2 bottles of dry white wine, chilled
2 cups sparkling apple cider
6 T. Poire William (pear flavored eau de vie)
Follow directions below for placing ice in the cauldron. Then, place apples and grapes in large plastic black cauldron (or silver punch bowl)- can purchase at party stores. DO NOT USE GLASS SERVERS IF USING THE DRY ICE.
Pour in wine, cider and poire William. Gently stir and serve with ladle into festive glasses.
5 lbs. of dry ice. Brookline Ice carries it. 617-423-2823. It will last 24 hours in a cooler.
You have to be very careful when using dry ice. It has a standing temp of 180 degrees below zero! Use rag or tongs to handle. First drop the ice to crack it. Place pieces (with rags or tongs) in cheesecloth and tie well. Place in cauldron or silver punch bowl and pour above ingredients over the ice. It will begin smoking immediately.
If you just want a smoking cauldron with no drink, just place the ice (no cheesecloth needed) in the cauldron and pour some hot water over the ice and watch the fog roll in.
Prodigy’s Always Outnumbered, Never Outgunned (Maverick)
Michael Jackson’s – Thriller
Paloookaville by Fatboy Slim
I use foods that bring to mind Halloween themes, either in color, or in texture or theme.
Toasted Orange Pecans, black and orange caviar toasts, sweet potato chips, guacamole with chips, brown bread served with a big wedge of white cheddar, a log of fresh goat cheese rolled in black sesame seeds, tamales (available at a Mexican grocery) with salsa, mini mustard crusted lamb chops, soup served in tiny carved out pumpkins, mini carrot cupcakes, caramel apples dipped in nuts, Halloween themed cookies.
Here are a couple of easy and fun hors d’oeuvres to serve along with your own ideas!
“Fancy Fingers”- Prosciutto and Fontina “en carozzo” drizzled with White Truffle Oil
10 Slices Pepperidge Farm White Bread- thin
Fontina Cheese- 1/2 lb.
20 Thin slices of Prosciutto
White Truffle Oil
1 stick Unsalted Butter
Egg wash- 2 eggs mixed with splash of milk
Top ½ of bread slices with thin layer of Fontina, 1 thin layer of prosciutto, another thin layer of Fontina and remaining slice of bread. Heat large frying pan on medium high and add 2 T. butter. Melt. Dip sandwich in egg wash quickly and when butter is bubbling add sandwich to pan. Pan fry until golden brown. Flip sandwich to other side and panfry until golden brown. Take out of frying pan and let sit for a minute or so before cutting. Drizzle with a little truffle oil. Cut off crusts then cut into 4-5 finger sandwiches and serve!
12 large eggs
1 c. mayonnaise
2 t. Dijon mustard
1 t. Kosher salt
½ t. ground pepper
½ t. paprika
¼ t. cayenne pepper
1 t. hot sauce
red bell pepper- small tiny triangles cut from for garnish
2 scallions- dark-green parts only, cut into small triangles, for garnish
fresh chives, cut into ½ “ pieces, for garnish
Put eggs in medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Cover. Let stand 12 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer eggs to ice water bath.
When eggs are cool, peel, cut in half lengthwise. Carefully remove yolks, keeping whites intact. Refrigerate whites on platter.
Add mayo, mustard, paprika, salt and pepper and cayenne and hot sauce to yolks. Mash with fork until smooth. Cover, and refrigerate until stiff, about 30 minutes.
Mound yolk mixture in each egg-white half.
Put two triangles of red pepper in yolk near top edge of yolk mixture (to resemble devil ears. Place two pieces of chive in each yolk to resemble whiskers. Place one triangle of green pepper on bottom of each yolk to resemble a fang.
16 medium mushrooms
small grated onion
4 T. butter
¼ c. seasoned bread crumbs
½ t. salt
¼ t. pepper
1 t. parsley
1 ½ t. worstershire sauce
Break off and mince stems. Saute stems and onion in butter. Add paprika and bread crumbs, salt and pepper, parsley and worstershire sauce..
Fill mushroom caps with stuffing.
Broil 7 inches from flame for about 5 min. until sizzling.