Friday, October 26, 2012

Halloween Night of Frights: The Final Chapter

I feel like the holiday has already come and gone--have you all seen the Christmas advertisements already? Ridiculous. I do hope I get to see a few good trick or treaters! I was taking a walk around the Cherokee Triangle yesterday and I seriously want to stunt my growth, throw on a fun costume, and go trick or treating myself with such great decorations everywhere. Oh to have a heavy pillowcase full of candies and come home to dump them all on the floor, where the bartering begins. I was lucky to have a sister with opposite likes for candy, so we made out can deal with the cavities later, right?

Today ties up the Halloween trilogy with a few more recipes. I know everyone is psyched about the candies and baking recipes, but I'll have to get Benzie the Baker (my roommate) to contribute to that one. Until then, I will give you the links and later I can edit for notes. The recipes we have left today are the Hot as Hades Salsa, Witch's Concoction Dip and Crudités, and Sausage Balls. I'll also give you the link for the delicious Philadelphia Fish House Punch, which made plenty for the party.

Hot as Hades Salsa
2 cans of crushed tomatoes
1 tiny can of green chiles
1 tiny can of jalapeños (this is how you control the heat)
Optional: replace jalapeño with chipotle in adobo
1/2 Minced onion
3 Minced cloves of garlic
1/8 C Vinegar
1/8 C sugar (or more to taste)
Chimayo chili
Sour cream or crema for spider web decoration

As for any homemade salsa, you can adjust the level of heat accordingly. The major heat contributors are the Jalapeños, the chili pepper, and the onion/garlic combination. The onions and garlic tone themselves down after a day or two, when they are able to permeate their flavor throughout the entire salsa. However, if you are more of a mild person, you can just throw in a few jalapeños (don't omit them because you still need that flavor!). If you are more into picante I would seriously recommend substituting a chipotle in adobo in there--if you've never done this, do it one at a time and check the heat as you go...those hotties are potent!

As for the salsa's construction, you just need to blend all of the above ingredients and taste as you go, adjusting the seasonings to your taste. This way, the recipe is always going to be different, but a unique salsa recipe is a good way to judge a chef's I dare you! For the Halloween theme, draw a spider web on top with sour cream or crema (found in the Mexican supermarkets or "International aisle").

Witch's Concoction Dip and Crudités
8 oz or so Goat cheese
1/2 C Greek yoghurt
Jar of pesto
Squeeze of lemon
Cracked pepper
Smoked paprika (pimentón)

Jicama, cut into sticks
Bell peppers

I said that this dip repelled vampires on my little gravestone label, and it does have a nice garlicky punch. You can choose to make your own pesto, if you're into that, and I would say you could use about a 3/4 C of it to get the same mixture. Adjust the greek yoghurt and goat cheese to the desired consistency, thinner=more yoghurt, thicker=more goat cheese. Mix all of the ingredients in the first set, and you have your dip. As for the crudités, go outside the norm...find something fun that is in season, available at the store, looks cool and can be eaten raw, then cut them in different shapes and style the plate. The above vegetables are suggestions I thought would work everywhere. I myself had jicama, but it is not pictured in the photo...surprise!

Sausage Balls
16 oz. Country Sausage (without the casing)
3 C Baking Mix (like Jiffy or Bisquick)
2 C Cheese: cheddar is the go-to, but gruyère would be incredible!
Mix all of the ingredients together until well incorporated. The sage should be mixed in until you can see that beautiful contrasting green distributed throughout, but don't go overboard, a tablespoon or so should do it--use your good judgement. Then roll them into balls. At this point you can put them in the freezer and save for later use, or you can put them directly onto a baking sheet, me the sausage will take care of the fat factor for you, in an oven preheated to 400º for 15-20 minutes or until desired shade of golden brown. This recipe can be made ahead of time. The raw dough, not rolled into balls, will save in the fridge for 24 hours before you should roll it up and bake it.

As for the other recipes, here is what I found (these links will take you to recipes on other sites):
I made an ice ring for this in the bottom of our bundt cake pan (which is in the shape of cathedral spires, so it made an awesome ice ring. Instead of thyme and peaches, I put in orange rind and raspberries and it was beautiful!

Recipe from i am baker
We were going to put shards of sugar glass in there with the "blood" on them, but that didn't work out quite as planned. However, dripping puréed raspberries was a great idea, and looked a lot like blood. So slasher cupcakes were still a go!

From i am baker
These cuties are dark chocolate black velvet cookies with an orange fluff icing. So addictive! So awesome displayed as well!

This, dear friends, is the conclusion of the Halloween trilogy. Don't you both love and hate it when trilogies resolve themselves? I do!
Happy Halloween and I hope that your party is as much fun as ours was!!!

1 comment:

  1. I'm on board with the Hot as Hades Salsa! It sounds deliciously spicy. Happy Halloween! :)