Halloween Recipes 2004

Crispy Rice Jack-o-lantern

This is an easy way to make a Jack-o-lantern you can eat!

1 Stick Butter
2 (10 oz). pkgs. Marshmallows
12 c. Rice Crispy Cereal
1 tsp. Yellow Food Color
1/4 tsp. Red Food Color
Green Decorating Icing in Tube
Black Decorating Icing in Tube
Decorating Tips
12 c. Bowl (not plastic)

Melt butter on low heat and add marshmallows. Stir marshmallows frequently. When marshmallows have dissolved, add food colors and mix well. When the marshmallow mixture is uniform in orange color add cereal and stir and mix until rice crispies are completely coated.

Pour mixture into the bowl that has been well sprayed with a non-stick spray. Carefully press down cereal (spray the spoon or your hands when pressing the cereal, this helps so the cereal will not stick). Place into the refrigerator until completely chilled and firm. When the pumpkin is chilled remove from refrigerator and invert onto a plate. Remove bowl and decorate with leaves and stem. A great jack o lantern smile will be the finishing touch.

The Jack-o-lantern makes a great centerpiece and a delightful treat.

Crockpot Carmel Apples

2 (14 oz.) pkgs. carmels
1/4 c. water
8 apples
8 sticks
Mini chocolate chips
candy decorations

In crockpot, combine caramels and water. Cover and cook on high for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, stirring frequently. Wash and dry apples. Insert stick into stem end of each apple. Turn control on low. Dip apple into hot caramel and turn to coat entire surface. Holding apple above pot, scrape off excess caramel from bottom apple. Place on greased wax paper to cool. Once the carmel has set, roll the apples in the toppings of your choice.

Frozen Hand

(This is a great addition to punch!)

1 qt. water
food coloring of your choice (red, blue, green)
1 rubber or sturdy plastic glove
1 rubber band

Make sure you rinse the glove well if you intend to put this into something that will be consumed. Do not use rubber gloves come with a fuzzy lining inside!

Place 1 quart of water in a bowl, and add food coloring of your choice. For a witch you might want to add green, or for a space alien you might want to add blue. Pour colored water into glove, tie off glove with a rubber band. Lay glove on its side in your freezer, and freeze overnight. It is a good idea to put the glove on a cookie sheet, or in a large flat container, as a bit of the liquid may leak. When frozen solid remove, and place into punch.

Salted Pumkin Seeds

2 c. Pumpkin Seeds
1-1/2 T. melted butter or oil
1-1/4 tsp. Salt

Separate the seeds. Spread seeds on a flat shallow pan. Pour melted butter over seeds and sprinkle with salt.

Bake in a slow oven (250) until the seeds are dried out and crispy brown. Stir occasionally to toast evenly.

Caramel Corn

(Carmel Corn makes a wonderful Halloween treat and is easier to make than you might think. Make a couple of batches and serve in large black and orange bowls. You can even bag some up to hand out for treats! This recipe uses white sugar instead of brown to let the buttery taste come through!)

14 c. popped popcorn
2 c. sugar (packed)
1 c. butter
1/2 c. light corn syrup
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda

Combine the sugar, butter, corn syrup and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Once it begins to boil, stop stirring for 5 minutes, or until mixture reaches 255 degrees on candy thermometer. (You may have to adjust according to altitude and humidity). Remove from heat and stir in baking soda. The mixture will start to foam, so stir well until blended.

While the caramel mixture is cooking, pop the pop-corn either in a hot air popper or microwave. Once you have popped the pop-corn, remove any unpopped kernels. Now place the popcorn in a large (buttered) metal bowl. Pour the hot mixture over the pop-corn and toss gently with well buttered forks to distribute evenly.

Spread onto 2 ungreased baking sheets and bake at 200 degrees for 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. if it starts to look too golden it may be time to take it out! Oven temperatures vary not only with model but with altitude, so you'll have to adjust time accordingly.

STORAGE & SERVING: Remove the caramel corm from the oven and allow to cool completely. Once cool, break it into clusters, and store in a tightly covered container. For a Halloween party, serve on on a large serving tray or in decorative bowls. For treats, fill those little paper Halloween bags.

Double Chocolate Caramels

(The better the quality of chocolate used in these caramels, the more delicious the result)

4 c. heavy cream
2-1/2 c. light corn syrup
4-1/2 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 lb. plus 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped small>
2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces
Vegetable-oil cooking spray

Spray an 11 3/4-by-16 1/4-inch baking pan with vegetable-oil spray. Set aside in a spot where it will not be moved. In a heavy 4-quart saucepan, combine 2 cups cream, corn syrup, sugar, and salt. Clip on candy thermometer. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, 15 to 20 minutes. Wash down sides of pan with a pastry brush dipped in water to remove any sugar crystals.

Cook, stirring constantly, until temperature reaches 220 degrees, 6 to 8 minutes; watch so mixture doesn't boil over. Continue stirring, and add chocolate and butter; keep mixture boiling, and slowly add remaining 2 cups cream. Cook, still stirring, until temperature reaches 240 degrees (soft-ball stage), about 60 minutes, keeping mixture at a low boil.

Without scraping pot, pour mixture into prepared pan. Let stand uncovered at room temperature for 24 hours without moving.

To cut, spray a cutting board with vegetable-oil spray. Unmold caramel onto sprayed surface. Using a large knife, cut into 1-by-1 1/4-inch pieces or other shapes. Wrap each piece in cellophane or waxed paper.

Makes about 150.

Golden Caramels

(Caramels should be individually wrapped in cellophane or waxed paper so they keep their shape)

4 c. heavy cream
1 c. sweetened condensed milk
4 c. light corn syrup
4 c. sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces
1 T. plus one tsp. pure vanilla extract
Vegetable-oil cooking spray

Spray an 11 3/4-by-16 1/2-inch baking pan (this is a half-sheet pan) with vegetable-oil spray. Set aside in a spot where it will not be moved. In a 2-quart saucepan, combine cream and sweetened condensed milk; set aside.

In a heavy 6- to 8-quart saucepan, combine corn syrup, 1 cup water, sugar, and salt. Clip on candy thermometer. Over high heat, cook until sugar is dissolved, stirring with a wooden spoon, 8 to 12 minutes. Brush down sides of pan with a pastry brush dipped in water to remove any sugar crystals.

Stop stirring, reduce heat to medium, and bring to a boil. Cook, without stirring, until temperature reaches 250 degrees (hard-ball stage), 45 to 60 minutes. Meanwhile, cook cream mixture over low heat until it is just warm. Do not boil. When sugar reaches 250 degrees, slowly stir in butter and warmed cream mixture, keeping mixture boiling at all times. Stirring constantly, cook over medium heat until thermometer reaches 244 degrees (firm-ball stage), 55 to 75 minutes. Stir in vanilla. Immediately pour into prepared pan without scraping pot. Let stand uncovered at room temperature for 24 hours without moving.

To cut, spray a large cutting board generously with vegetable-oil spray. Unmold caramel from pan onto sprayed surface. Cut into 1-by-1 1/4-inch pieces, or other shapes. Wrap each in cellophane or waxed paper.

Makes about 150.

Nonpareils Candies

(The French term for button candies is nonpareils, which means "without peer." No one who remembers them from their youth would argue with that. Nonpareils dark chocolate buttons topped with sugar beads are the caviar of childhood)

8 oz. bittersweet chocolate
1/2 tsp. pure vegetable shortening
1/4 c. white or colored sugar beads

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In the top of a double boiler or in a heat-proof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, melt the chocolate and shortening, stirring with a rubber spatula until smooth.

Spoon the melted chocolate in nickel-size circles onto prepared baking sheet. Cool for 20 minutes; sprinkle with sugar beads. Let nonpareils harden in a cool place for 4 hours before serving.

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