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November 1, 2012

Ghost cake pops & other Halloween must-haves!

Halloween fuss hasn't been around for too long in Finland, but every year you can see more and more spiders, pumpkins and witches decorating store windows. The Halloween bug (spider in this case?) bit me 5 years ago, when I got to spend it in the USA. There's something magical about the whole celebration, even though the idea of the souls of the deads hanging around isn't exactly that, um... tempting.

Based on conversations I hear at coffee tables, on bus or wherever, we don't really know which weekend Halloween should be celebrated in. In most countries Halloween happens on October 31st, on the eve of All Saints Day, so the "right" time would be the last weekend of October, not the first of November. Anyhow, the Finnish style to solve this dilemma is to celebrate both weekends, which doesn't get any complaints from me :). 

Ghost cake pops.
I decided to throw a small Halloween party for friends last weekend, and wanted to serve something yummy in the spirit of the holiday. I've made a vanilla pumpkin pie for Halloween two years in a row now, and this weekend was no exception. This recipe is simply amazing, beats many cheesecakes (my favourites cake-wise) if you ask me. I only skip the cooking-the-pieces part because I use more of the soft inside, not the hard flesh, and mash it as raw. The funniest part begins when the pie is in the oven: carving the pumpkin! I'll make another post about that soon.

For other treats to serve I went through some googling and ended up with the following menu (find recipes below pictures):

Pumpkin pie served with whipped cream and maple syrup
Ghost cake pops
Breadstick bones with pesto "blood" dip
Cheese bones with apple/cinnamon "brain" jam
Halloween spirited candies 
Purple punch


GHOST CAKE POPS (around 20, variation of this recipe, decoration inspired by this recipe)

2 tubes of Domino/Oreo mint cookies

100 g cream cheese
200-300 g white chocolate

Smash the cookies until fine. Mix with cream cheese. Put in fridge for about 1 hour until the dough is a bit harder. Roll small balls of it and put in fridge for a few minutes. Melt the white chocolate, dip the other ends of the sticks in it, stick the stick into the ball and roll in chocolate. Let dry in fridge and paint the faces preferably with black pasta colour or other powdered colour mixed with water. 

The baking store had run out of black pasta colour, so bought an edible ink pen, which turned out to be a fiasco: the colour just didn't come out of the sharp end, so I had to go back and forth with the sides of the head. I overpainted the scary little faces with dark green powdered colour I happened to have. That's why my ghosts have blurry faces!

Vanilla pumpkin pie with whipped cream and maple syrup.

VANILLA PUMPKIN PIE (for 12, find the recipe in Finnish here.)

400 g of refrigerated shortcrust pastry


2 dl crushed pecan nuts

5 dl mashed pumpkin
4 eggs
2 dl vanilla quark
1,5 dl cane sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
0,5 teaspoon ginger
hint of powdered clove
0,5 teaspoon salt

whipped cream and maple syrup


1. Melt the pastry, roll it a bit thinner and press it on the bottom and sides of a pie tray.

2. Crush the nuts and roast them on a dry pan until they get some colour. Be careful not to burn them. Pour the nuts on the pastry.
3. Cut the "hat" of the pumpkin off, remove the seeds, gouge the flesh and boil it until soft and smash it (I never boil the flesh, just smash it raw).
4. Whip the eggs until soft foam. Mix all the ingredients together and pour over the nuts. Bake at 200 C for about 40 minutes. When done, let the pie cool down completely befor cutting it.

Serve with whipped cream and maple syrup.


Breadstick bones.
BREADSTICK BONES (in Finnish here)

PASTRY

70-80 g grated parmesan cheese
3 cloves of garlic
5 dl milk or water (I used water)
1/4 pckg yeast
11-12 dl flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 dl olive oil
2 tablespoons dried herbs (eg. basilica, rosemary, thyme)

ON TOP

olive oil
grated parmesan cheese
sesame/poppy seeds
sea salt

1. Heat the milk/water until warm, crumble the yeast into the liquid. Add 8 dl of flour after the yeast has dissolved. Knead the pastry until elastic and go on for about 15 minutes.

2. Add cheese, garlic, olive oil, salt and herbs. Mix until even. Cover with a towel and let rise for half an hour. Press the pastry and let rise for another half hour. Heat the oven to 225 C.
3. Divide the pastry in four. Use a rolling pin to roll the pastry into a rectangle (15 cm x 25 cm) and cut it lengthwise into 8 pieces. Roll the pieces between hands until finger thick sticks. Place on a baking tray, brush with olive oil and sprinkle other ingredients on top.   
4. Bake for about 15 minutes or until slightly brownish. Preferably serve right away.   

I made a red dip for the sticks by mixing sour cream with red pesto.


Chocolate (pumpkin) balls, cheese boned with apple/cinnamon jam. With a bone-shaped mold these were super easy to make.

PURPLE PUNCH

Almost a whole bottle of Parfait amour liqueur (the purple one)

1/2-1 bottle of dry white whine
Red soda (eg. Fanta Exotic)
Sparkling water


Wow, that was a lot of recipes for one post! Happy and creepy Halloween! It's time for this witch to park the broom and go to bed.

8 comments:

  1. Mahtavat nuo kummitustikkarit! :S

    ReplyDelete
  2. Pakko vielä kommentoida.. mun sanavahvistus äsken:

    22 hooperse

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kun siis sulla on asetuksissa Bloggerin sanavahvistus ennen kun voi kommentoida. Niin tuo oli kysytty sana, mikä mun piti naputella. Oli joskus hauska, nyt ehkä vähän kuivu. :DD

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    2. Buhhahhaa.. sanavahvistus, jaa sillä nimellä sitä kutsutaan -> otanpa pois käytöstä. No, eipä kumma ku ei tää kankkujuttu auennu. :D

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