The care and feeding of ghosts and goblins

 

These savory witches' hats are flavored with sun-dried tomatoes, fresh basil and garlic powder, but a sweeter version made with chocolate chips is an equally tasty treat for this coming weekend.

These savory witches' hats are flavored with sun-dried tomatoes, fresh basil and garlic powder, but a sweeter version made with chocolate chips is an equally tasty treat for this coming weekend. Photo by: tasteofhome.com

 

Pineapple, mandarin oranges and apples are all that's needed to conjure up fruit candy corn.

Pineapple, mandarin oranges and apples are all that's needed to conjure up fruit candy corn.
Photo by: superhealthykids.com

 

Frankenstein, anyone? Add some fall fun to a filling pasta dish.

Frankenstein, anyone? Add some fall fun to a filling pasta dish.
Photo by: superhealthykids.com

 

 

Jan Swoope

 

 

As the witching hour draws nearer, festivity-starved souls are counting the days until All Hallows' Eve. Weatherfolk predict the holiday will come suitably wrapped in crisp fall temperatures and clear skies -- just right for tall tales around a fire pit and toasting a marshmallow or two. Last Wednesday, we looked at ways to more safely adapt our Halloween to this frightful 2020 and also included ideas for healthy-ish themed snacks. Today, we're harvesting some heartier recipes to fill up whatever costumed characters haunt your house. Whet their appetites with crescent roll witches hats or fruit candy corn. Warm them up from the inside out with monster spaghetti, Frankenstein pasta or spooky chicken noodle soup.

 

As for appetizers, make your fruit candy corn by getting together large toothpicks, pineapple rings, mandarin oranges and apples (or bananas). Cut the fruit into pieces of descending curved or triangular size (pineapple larger, orange smaller, apple as the smallest triangle). Spear them together on toothpicks to form your "corn," says superhealthykids.com. For the dip, combine 1 cup plain Greek style yogurt, 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter and 1 tablespoon honey.

 

Pick up a couple of packages of crescent rolls because you just may want to make two versions of witches' hats -- savory and sweet. A savory recipe from tasteofhome.com is included on page 6B. For the sweet option, try this one from pillsbury.com. You'll want 1/4 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips and 2 teaspoons of powdered sugar or unsweetened baking cocoa. Put crescent roll dough triangles on an ungreased cookie sheet and then sprinkle a heaping teaspoon of chocolate chips across the wide end of the crescent triangle; roll it over once to form the brim of a hat. Form the rest of the crescent triangle into a hat shape, curving the point. Bake your hats 9-11 minutes, or until they're golden brown. Use a fine mesh strainer to sprinkle powdered sugar or cocoa on top and then serve these treats warm from the oven.

 

 

Make the most you can of this holiday season opener. May it be filled with far more treats than tricks.

 

 

SAVORY WITCHES HATS

 

Prep/total time: 25 minutes

 

Makes 16 rolls

 

 

2 tubes (8 ounces each) refrigerated crescent rolls

 

1/4 cup butter, softened

 

1/4 cup minced fresh basil

 

2 tablespoons oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, patted dry and finely chopped

 

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

 

 

  • Preheat oven to 375 F. Unroll each tube of crescent dough; separate each dough into eight triangles. In a small bowl, mix remaining ingredients. Spread 1 teaspoon filling along the wide end of each triangle; carefully roll up once to form brim of hat.

     

  • Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Rotate halfway through baking to ensure even browning.

     

    (Source: tasteofhome.com/Mara Fletcher)

     

     

    FRANKENSTEIN PASTA

     

     

    1 cup basil, fresh

     

    2 cloves garlic

     

    1/3 ounce (167 kernels) pine nuts, dried

     

    1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

     

    1 dash salt

     

    1/3 cup olive oil

     

    16 ounces whole wheat pasta shells

     

    3 medium cucumbers

     

    4 ounces mozzarella cheese

     

    1 cup black olives, canned

     

     

  • In a blender or food processor combine basil, garlic, pine nuts, Parmesan, salt (you can add pepper if you want as well) and olive oil. Taste and add more salt, pepper or garlic if desired.

     

  • Bring a pot of water (about 5 cups) to a boil and add whole wheat pasta. Cook according to box instructions. Drain and add pesto sauce. Stir well and let cool.

     

  • Peel and chop up 1 1/2 of the cucumbers and stir into pasta.

     

  • Pour out onto a platter and make a rectangle out of the pasta. Cut two slices of mozzarella and make them into circles using a cookie cutter or knife. Use olives to create Frank's hair, pupils and mouth. Use the rest of the cucumber to make "bolts" in the side of his neck.

     

    (Source: superhealthykids.com)

     

     

    MONSTER SPAGHETTI

     

     

    1 box whole grain spaghetti

     

    1 tablespoon black food coloring

     

    Stuffed olives, or olives of your choice

     

    Your favorite spaghetti sauce

     

     

  • Begin cooking whole grain spaghetti as instructed on the box. As soon as you add the pasta to the boiling water, add one tablespoon of black food coloring into the boiling water. The spaghetti should absorb the food coloring and turn black.

     

  • Prepare the spaghetti sauce, but do not mix it in with the pasta just yet.

     

  • Next, monsterize your meal: This step is the most fun because the whole family gets involved. Put a serving of spaghetti on a plate and top with sauce of your choice. Place olives on top of the sauce to give your spooky spaghetti some eerie eyes.

     

    (Source: extension.unh.edu)

     

     

    SPOOKY CHICKEN NOODLE SOUP

     

     

    Your favorite chicken noodle soup recipe

     

    3 carrots

     

    1 package bow tie pasta

     

    1 tablespoon black food coloring

     

     

  • Wash and peel the carrots and cut into discs. Turn the discs into pumpkins by cutting out little stems and rounding the top edges. Start the soup.

     

  • Cook the pasta separately from the rest of the soup. Begin by following directions on the pasta package. Once the water is boiling, add the pasta and food coloring. Once cooked to your liking, drain the pasta and add to the soup. Serve the soup in a festive witch's cauldron (or a bowl) to hungry ghouls and ghosts.

     

    (Source: extension.unh.edu)

     

     

  • Jan Swoope is the Lifestyles Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.

     

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