Halloween Treats & Appetizers for a Boo-tiful Party

IMG_1853Halloween’s never really been my favorite holiday.  Deciding on a costume, procuring all the stuff needed for that costume without spending a fortune, then battling the crowds at the top parties…I was over it by about age 23, I gotta admit.

However, I do LOVE pumpkin carving.  So this weekend, we invited our nearest and dearest over for a little pumpkin carving fun, and that gave my the opportunity to make some super-fun Halloween themed treats, including ghost tea sandwiches, a guacamole graveyard, deviled egg eyeballs, and chocolate dipped pretzel rods.

Recipes for everything after the jump! (Press “continue reading” to see more!)

Ghost Tea Sandwiches

IMG_1847Ingredients:

  • 1 loaf thin-sliced white bread
  • 2 pkgs smoked salmon or lox
  • 1 small tub of cream cheese
  • fresh dill
  • black pepper
  • black gel decorating icing

Directions:

  1. At least two hours before you even begin to think about starting this recipe, do yourself a favor: take the cream cheese out of the fridge and let it start to thaw to room temperature.  You cannot do this with cold cream cheese, you’ll just end up with a lot of ripped bread.
  2. Once your cream cheese is properly thawed, spread a thin layer of cream cheese on two pieces of bread.
  3. Grind some fresh black pepper on your cream cheese, and tear some fresh dill  – maybe 2-3 sprigs per sandwich.
  4. Layer with your smoked salmon, and combine. Then, using a ghost shaped cookie cutter (we got ours at Wal Mart) press firmly down through the entire sandwich.  You may need to trace the edge with a sharp knife to cut through any stringy salmon bits.
  5. Remove the excess bread and release your ghost sandwich.  Then, using your gel icing, paint two “I”s for eyes and an “O” for a mouth. Voila!  This recipe makes about 10 large tea sandwiches.

Guacamole Graveyard

IMG_1848Ingredients:

  • 4 medium avocados
  • Juice of two large limes
  • 8 oz store made pico de gallo (if you can’t find store made, finely dice the meat of one large tomato–no seeds or juice–, a quarter of a white onion, 1 clove of garlic, 1 small jalapeno (cored and de-seeded), and chopped cilantro to taste)
  • 1/2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • black gel decorating icing
  • Pita chips

Directions:

  1.  Peel, core, and cube all the avocados.  Add the lime juice and spices, then mash with a fork until you reach the desired consistency.
  2. Fold in the pico de gallo until well combined.  Then, spoon into a square baking dish, and level out with the back of a spoon.
  3. Draw “graves” with the get icing by piping rectangles shapes onto the field of guacamole.  Then, pipe “epitaphs” onto the pita chips to serve as your “gravemarkers”.  Put a pita chip at the head of each “grave”.

Deviled Egg Eyeballs

IMG_1849Ingredients:

  • 1 Dozen Eggs
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsbp mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp sweet relish
  • 1/2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • salt
  • pepper
  • paprika
  • 1 small tin of sliced black olives

Directions:

  1. Put your dozen eggs in the bottom of a large pot and cover with one inch of water.  Add in your 1 tsp of baking soda and stir until dissolved.  Then, heat over high heat until the water comes to a boil.  Boil for 7 minutes, then turn off heat and let sit for another three minutes.
  2. Drain your eggs, and allow to cool.  Roll each egg on a hard surface to crack the shell, then peel.  (Including the baking soda should make this an easy job.) Slice eggs in half, length wise.
  3. Scoop out the yolk into a mixing bowl, and combine with the mayo, dijon, and relish until combined.  Season with salt and pepper until combined.
  4. Pipe your yolk mixture back into the center of your whites, and place on a plattter.  Sprinkle with paprika, then top each egg with a sliced olive to serve as your “retina”.

Chocolate Dipped Pretzel Rods

IMG_1850Ingredients:

  • 1 bag pretzel rods
  • 1 bag dark chocolate morsels
  • Halloween-themed sprinkles or colored royal icing

Directions

  1. For this recipe, you’ll want to use a double boiler.  Find a glass pyrex bowl or metal mixing bowl that fits snuggly on top of a saute pan.  Add a couple inches of water (not enough to touch bottom of top bowl) then bring to a boil.
  2. In the top bowl, add your melting chocolate.  Using a silicone spatula, stir regularly.
  3. Once fully melted, dip half of your pretzel sticks into the chocolate, using the spatula to wipe off extra. Place recently dipped rods on parchment or wax paper.
  4. If you’re using sprinkles, apply before your chocolate dries.  If you’re using icing, let the chocolate sit up a bit before adding.
  5. Let dry for at least 4 hours in the fridge.

Whitney