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Happy Haunting

Posted: October 26, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: October 26, 2011 1:55 a.m.

From upper left: chicken pastelitos, devil’s dip, great balls of fire and curry chicken stars

 

This Halloween, don’t let the kids have all the fun — scare up your own good time with a Halloween party for grown up guys and ghouls.

Phantasmic party themes
Set the mood with a theme for your party, then carry it out with invitations, decorations, food and fun.

* Upscale gothic — Think stylish haunted mansion, dripping with vintage looking black and white décor. Create an eerily elegant centerpiece by spray painting interesting branches black and securing them in an old silver vase or pitcher so they look like a tree in a planter. Then hang cut-out ravens and owls from the branches.
* Monster mash — Go old-school by celebrating the old monster movies from days gone by. Have Dracula and werewolf movies playing on the TV, or project them onto a wall or a sheet in the back yard. Use fake cobwebs and mummy gauze to dress tables and chairs, and freeze plastic body parts into ice cubes for some truly chilling drinks.
* A haunted twist — You can put a good fright into just about any fun theme. How about a haunted luau? Or a haunted hoedown, carnival or cruise? Start with the usual décor, then give it a good scare with fake blood, grossed-out goodies and weird little touches.

Frightful fun
* Have guests bring their own carved jack-o-lanterns to enter in a contest. They can be carved any way guests like, or you can specify that carvings should be related to your theme. Let everyone vote, then give the winners a fun prize.
* Good old-fashioned costume contests don’t ever go out of style. In addition to Best Costume awards, give out prizes for Best Undead Bride or Most Likely to End Up in a Bad Horror Movie.

Devilishly good dining
Keep party food simple to make and easy to eat. These recipes are alarmingly easy and will have your guests howling for more. You can scare up more recipes at www.underwoodspreads.com.

Curry chicken stars
1     can (4.25 ounces) Underwood chicken spread
1/4     cup sliced almonds
1/4     cup red bell pepper, sliced
2     tablespoons green onion, chopped
1     tablespoon Polaner Fancy Fruit apricot spread
1/4     teaspoon curry powder
1     can (8 ounces) frozen crescent dinner rolls

Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a small bowl, combine all ingredients except crescent rolls. Unroll crescent roll dough, fold in half and then roll into a 10-inch square. Cut into 16 (2 1/2-inch) squares.
Make one-inch cuts diagonally from the corners of each square.
Place one heaping teaspoon of filling into the center of each square.
To form stars, fold in every other dough tip toward center. Insert a wooden tooth­pick into the center of each star to hold dough.
Bake on greased baking sheet for 10 to 12 minutes.

Chicken pastelitos
1     tablespoon olive oil
1     chopped onion
1/2     green bell pepper, chopped
1     celery stalk, chopped
2     cans (4.25 ounces each) Underwood chicken spread
2     tablespoons raisins
2     tablespoons B&G Spanish-style salad olives, drained and chopped
1     tablespoon tomato paste
1     teaspoon Trappey’s Red Devil cayenne pepper sauce
1/4     teaspoon oregano, dried leaves
2    tablespoons bread crumbs, if necessary
1     package (14 ounces) frozen white or yellow dough for turnover pastries, thawed
1     egg, beaten

Preheat oven to 400°F. Line large bak­ing sheet with nonstick foil.
In large skillet over medium heat, in hot oil, cook onion, pepper and celery, covered for 10 minutes or until tender but not brown.
Stir in chicken spread, raisins, olives, tomato paste, pepper sauce and oregano. Stir in bread crumbs to thicken filling.
On lightly floured surface, with floured rolling pin, roll one dough round into six-inch circle.
Spoon 1/4 cup filling on one side of circle. Brush egg along edge of circle; fold dough over to cover filling. Seal edges of turnover with fork; brush with egg. Place turnover on prepared baking sheet.
Repeat, using remain­ing filling and dough rounds. Cut small slit in top of each turnover.
Bake 15 minutes or until golden brown and puffed. Cool slightly, serve warm.

Devil’s dip
8     ounces cream cheese, softened
1     can (4.25 ounces) Underwood Deviled Ham Spread
1     cup green onions, chopped
1/4     cup pimiento, finely chopped
1     teaspoon Trappey’s Red Devil Hot Sauce

In a small bowl, mix cream cheese, ham spread, green onions, pimientos and hot pepper sauce.
Chill, covered for about 30 minutes.
Serve with crackers, chips or vegetables.

Great balls of fire
1     cup (4 ounces) cheddar cheese, shredded
3     ounces cream cheese, softened
1     can (4.25 ounces) Underwood Deviled Ham Spread
2     tablespoons green onions, finely chopped
3     tablespoons green chili peppers, chopped
1/3     cup walnuts, chopped

In small bowl, combine cheddar cheese, cream cheese, ham spread, onions and chilies; mix well. Shape mix­ture into a ball. Roll in chopped nuts. Wrap in plastic wrap; refrig­erate two hours.
Let stand at room tempera­ture 30 minutes to soften slightly before serving.
Serve with crackers.

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