Woo hoo! Hallowe’en is on it’s way! Spooky! Wandering into a shop this morning to pick up some supplies, I noticed that the place was stacked high with Hallowe’en goodies – witches hats, pumpkins and even bats pasted to the windows (not real ones, I hasten to add…). With each year that comes, we seem to be getting more and more into Hallowe’en and trick or treating. When I was a kid I loved Hallowe’en but it wasn’t anything as popular as it is nowadays. I used to get dressed up as a witch and once I even sat in the great big chestnut tree in front of the house in the dark and tried to spook the passersby! I’m not sure how convinced they were though as I was only about eight and not very scary.
That said, I’m not a big fan of trick or treating. A lot of people do it now around our way but it can be a nuisance and also I think dangerous for young children unless they’re accompanied by an adult. It’s one of those things that I’m not entirely sure I approve of, even though the kids love to do it in Ireland where my folks live. My mum even keeps a plastic cauldron of goodies by the door at this time of year. So maybe I’m just a big spoilsport!
Anyway, I do love Hallowe’en pumpkin lanterns. My neighbour loves to make them and they are so much fun. Unfortunately we didn’t grow any pumpkins this year, which was a great shame. A few years ago I grew a couple of good ‘uns, which are pictured above. By the way, while I remember, here’s a link to my great friend and local journalist Sylvia Kent’s recent blog entry on Wendy and Keith Petty’s Atlantic Giant pumpkins. I’d love to grow some of these!
We do have a couple of squashes which Doug grew but they are very small – far too small to carve out, so we may have to buy a pumpkin this year. If you’re making a lantern and you don’t know what to do with the pumpkin innards, my great friend Nina gave me the following recipe a few years ago, which is really delicious, for pumpkin brownies.
Nina’s pumpkin & chocolate brownie recipe
150g pumpkin peeled & cut into chunks
1tbsp golden caster sugar
75g plain chocolate
250g soft light brown sugar
175g self-raising flour
15g cocoa powder
Boil the pumpkin until tender, then drain. Puree and sweeten with the caster sugar. Preheat the oven to 180 deg c/ gas mark 4. Grease and flour a 180cm x 30.5 cm tin. Melt the butter & chocolate together in a saucepan and then add the other ingredients. Stir everything together thoroughly and pour into the prepared tin. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Leave to cool in the tin and cut into bars. Enjoy!
I made these and gave half of them to another friend a few years ago who was pregnant. She was travelling home by train and, by the time she got there, she’d scoffed the lot!
Got any good Hallowe’en recipes? If so, I’d love to hear them. Otherwise, have a spooky time of it! 🙂
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