Monday, November 10, 2008

Halloween Recipes

This years halloween buffet had some great successes and some absolute failures. Enjoy.

Goblin Eyes

This simple treat is one of the most disturbing. Simply buy a can of lychee fruit in syrup. Fill pit hole in each fruit with some raspberry jam and then place blueberry in the hole for a pupil.

Brittle Bones

2/3 cups sugar
pinch of salt
3 egg whites (at room temp)
large pinch of cream of tartar
1/2teaspoon of vanilla extract

preheat oven to 200

Beat egg white with cream of tartar in a mixer until soft peaks form
add sugar & salt slowly beating until stiff peaks form and meringue is shiny
add vanilla and beat just until blended
fill a pastry bad or sandwich bag with the tip cut off
form bones on baking sheets lined with parchment paper
bake for about an hour and then turn off the heat and leave the bones int he over for a few hours until they are very hard.
I stored mine in tupperware for about 5 days. I think you can keep them for at least a week in an airtight container.
Next year I think I am going to sandwich them together and fill them with a marrow like substance.

Witch Fingers

1 cup Butter, softened
1 cup Icing sugar (powdered sugar)
1 Egg
1 tsp Almond extract
1 tsp Vanilla
2 2/3 cups Flour
1 tsp Baking powder
1 tsp Salt
3/4 cup Almonds, whole blanched

beat together butter, sugar, egg, almond extract and vanilla. Beat in flour, baking powder, and salt. Refrigerate dough for about a half hour so it is not melty when you try to form the fingers.
Use about a teaspoon of dough for each finger...This is all about trial and error. Form what you think looks like a finger. Make a couple of knuckles. Press the almond onto the top to make the fingernail. Then use a small knife to make slits in the knuckles to add detail.
Bake at 325 for 20 minutes.
You can add blood or dirt if you want but after making about 5 dozen fingers I was done.

baked maggot cocoon

This is just baked Brie. I cut a large round into 3 parts and wrapped each in puff pastry. Use the scraps to make decorations ont he top. Brush with an egg wash and bake at 350 for about a half hour.


In March I ordered a brain mold that was on sale. I forgot that I had it until about a day before the party. I went back and forth on what to put in it and finally decided on a shrimp paste because it would actually look like brain matter. It was gross!! I don't mean it looked gross I mean it tasted absolutely disgusting! No one ate it, which sucks because the shrimp were the most expensive part of the halloween buffet but I can not blame anyone. It was truly horrible. Next year, cheese ball.

Vampire Repellant

Roast some garlic and serve with crusty bread to keep away the bloodsuckers.

Bat Wings

you would think chicken wings would not be a good party food but these went fast. Serve them with your favorite hot sauce for dipping to cut back on the mess. Make sure you have lots of napkins.

Spider Cider

There is not much of a recipe for Spider cider... it changes each year depending on what liquor I have sitting around. The key is to use spiced rum as the main liquor. Mix about 3 parts cider to 1 part liquor of choice. Throw in some cloves, cinnamon sticks and star anise. Add spiders to the batch and serve.
As the night goes on feel free to mix it up. I think at the end of the night we had gin, vodka and whiskey in this...

Next year will have an even more bountiful display as I am beginning my planning now!

Monday, November 3, 2008


Like many people who refuse to act their age, I am obsessed with Halloween. It enters my thoughts sometime in July and steadily takes over for all of October. This year my thoughts were shared with this election but I was able to get it together and get my Halloween on.
Halloween Decor can be cheesy or creepy and in this house we like to lean towards creepy. I guess leaning is an understatement. Most serial killers would feel at home in our house. If you only knew Sean and I through our Halloween parties you would fear for your life and the mental stability of our friends. Here are some examples of this years decor.... enjoy.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Conclusion of the Quest

Upon arriving in New Orleans I met my group at Daisy Dukes, a cafe near our hotel, for some Gumbo. Little did I know that that was the last authentic New Orleans food I would have for quite some time.
After eating middle of the road gumbo we headed to the Voodoo Fest venue and set up camp for the weekend. The Fuse dome would be my home for 14 hours a day for the next 4 days.
I scoured the festival food for a muffaletta thinking I could at least get a low rent version while stuck there each luck.
Every night after leaving, my co-worker Angie and I would search for any place still selling Muffalettas at midnight. This proved to be much harder than we imagined as finding any food in this town after midnight was a task. The only hope we had were post midnight runs to Burbon street to watch groups of 21-yea-old girls make out, flash their boobs and then hurl bright red hurricane puke into ever corner of Pat O'Brians. After not eating all day and spending 14 hours working this was not the scene I was looking for. It got so bad that we actually walked into a 24 hour Arby's next to our hotel because the hunger pains were preventing us from walking any further. As we looked upon the shaved pressed meat sandwiches we both looked at each other and ran out faster than you could say "show your tits!"
With no chance of finding the Muffaletta, we aimlesslly walked until coming upon Cafe Du Monde. Their famous bignettes would have to do. A fried ball of dough mounded with powdered sugar. When I say mounded I really mean it. These pastries had enough sugar to throw you into a diabetic coma on the spot. These were good but the magic was lost on our defeated minds and bodies. We sat in bed that night wired on sugar and looking like we had engaged in a good old fashioned baby powder fight.

Eventually we reached Sunday with no sign of a Muffaletta anywhere. Maybe it was all a dream, Italian meat fairies dancing in our heads. Maybe there was a vast conspiracy to hide them from me. Maybe it was a sign of something bigger, something I could not understand nor would want to... I decided that one Muffaletta would have to do. I had a free day on Monday and would get up early, see the city, find my Muffaletta and go home happy. This was the plan. This would work. Glory would be mine.
As I loaded the conversion van with equipment Sunday night, the thought a full day to find the Muffaletta raced through my mind. As I was dreaming of the olive salad and packing a road case into the van I pants got caught on the door of the van... I fell out of the van landing on my back while my foot remained stuck....with a violent swing my foot snapped back and smashed on the bumper. I laid there stunned and in pain until Angie ripped my pants to free me. OUCH!
I stood up and instantly knew it... "I just broke my fucking foot!" Seriously. This is not happening to me. I have one day in this swamp and I needed to get out and enjoy it with my Muffaletta. What has poor Jenny done to deserve this?

I spent the night in the hotel feeling destroyed and icing my foot. Maybe I would be able to walk...maybe I wasn't really hurt...maybe I should find religion and pray.... there was nothing I could tell myself to make this better. I still ordered a wake up call for 9am in the hopes I would be better.
Well, I wasn't better but I did decided- who cares, I work from home. I can easily do more damage but I don't really need to get around... So I got up and left, limping like Kevin Spacey in the Usual Suspects. People stared but I didn't care. I would walk to Central Grocery, get my Muffaletta and then go back and ice my foot until the pain numbed.
As I was a block away I began to salivate. I couldn't believe with all the hurdles I was finally going to get my Muffaletta, just hours before leaving New Orleans. Soon I would be sitting at a small table by myself, enjoying this Muffaletta in solitude. A perfect ending!


Central grocery is closed on Monday. I sat on the curb in front of the store, foot throbbing in pain holding back tears. I could not believe this. I stared quietly as others approached the store to see it closed but wanted to yell, "You do not deserve to be angry! I have been trying to get here for days. I have a broken foot and a righteous heart!"
In my angry meditation something sparked in my mind. I remember reading an article about a place near central grocery that had perhaps a better Muffaletta..
At this time Angie showed up to help me get home. I pleaded with her to help me find anywhere that sold a Muffaletta. She casually says, "This place has one." Without realizing it we were sitting right in front of Franks, a small restaurant with a history of great Muffalettas. This is the place that I read about. I quickly sat down ordered my Muffaletta and sat waiting quietly to finish this day! Finally, I was getting my prize.

It was just okay.