Ghoulishly grown up Halloween entertaining for adults

Think Halloween is tacky? Think again.
Enjoy all the ghoulish fun you remember from your younger days, but take it up a notch. So why not swap out the bags of rockets and boxes of raisins for Risotto Pumpkins and Ghostly Cheesecake Truffl es or whip up some Halloween cocktails like Gory Be! and Snake Bite?

This Halloween, it’s time for the grownups to have some fun. So sit back and relax. Our guide to throwing a fantastic Halloween soirée has you covered.

JUST FOR STARTERS

Why not make Halloween a gourmet affair? It’s a great excuse for couples and empty nesters to get together for an evening featuring seasonal falls fl avours. After an evening passing out candy, why not plan on a post trick or treating dinner party? Sit down with friends and enjoy a Halloween themed meal featuring these devilishly good appetizers.

CLASSIC VAMPIRE MOVIES

Nosferatu (1922, Directed by F.W Murnau)
This silent fi lm is a cinematic landmark as it’s a precursor to all vampire movies that have come since. Who says you need sound to create drama or a sense of horror? The fi lm made actor Max Schreck’s performance feel so eerily real that many people, as seen in the movie Shadow of the Vampire (2000, Directed E. Elias Merhige) question if the actor was, in fact, indeed a vampire or the ultimate method actor.

Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992, Directed by Francis Ford Coppola)
Gary Oldman’s sinister yet humanistic portrayal of Count Dracula and Anthony Hopkin’s compelling performance as vampire-hunting Professor Abraham Van Helsing, along with the fi lm’s stunning cinematography, makes this an epic motion picture regardless of genre.

Interview with the Vampire (1994, Directed by Neil Jordan)
Few critics predicted that pretty boys Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt could pull off their roles as aristocratic vampires. The movie, based on the novel by Ann Rice, showcased the lives of the vampires from their point of view, exposing the inner turmoil of living a life of immortality.

Others worth watching include: The Lost Boys (1987, Directed by Joel Schumacher), 30 Days of Night (2007, Directed by David Shade), Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter (2012, Directed by Timur Bekmambetov) and John Carpenter’s Vampires (1998, Directed by John Carpenter).

SPIRIT-LESS DRINKS

For the designated drivers, you can easily exorcise the spirits from your Halloween cocktail routine. A dash of perfectly bloody looking Grenadine goes a long way to satiating the other worldly thirst of young trick-or-treaters. Simply fi ll glasses with orange juice. Pour an ounce of Grenadine down the side of the glass for a blood streaming-like effect and top with soda. Alternatively, punch bowls full of a gory mix of cranberry and
pomegranate juices complete with fl oating eyeballs (lychee fruit* fi lled with maraschino cherries) should get the appropriate “that’s creepy” reaction. *Fresh lychees can occasionally be found at Asian food stores. Canned lychees in syrup are regularly available in the international food aisle of most grocery stores.

THE WITCH’S BREWS

This Halloween, put a spell on your guests by serving them seasonal brews. You can’t go wrong by serving festively packaged brews such as Boneshaker Unfi ltered IPA, or if you prefer to take a more global seasonal
approach, opt for a selection of Germaninspired Oktoberfest beers. By tradition, the latter are beers brewed in spring that were kept in cool caves or cellars and allowed to slowly ferment during the summer months. While
German versions have grown paler overtime, most North American craft brewers keep the tradition of a malty, richly coloured lager like the original German versions. Other seasonal brews to include in your Halloween party planning include Pumpkin Ales, which veer from sweeter edge versions with a pumpkin pie filling flavour to more balanced attempts such as Propeller Pumpkin Ale.

Occasions Recommends

Boneshaker Unfiltered IPA, 6 x 355 ml, $16.99
Propeller Pumpkin Ale, 6 x 341 ml, $13.74
Samuel Adams Oktoberfest Ale, 6 x 355 ml, $15.49

Risotto Pumpkins
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Risotto Pumpkins
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  1. Place chicken stock in a pot and warm. Place another pot over low heat. Add olive oil and onion. When the onion is soft and translucent, add the Arborio rice. Sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the cider. When the cider has been absorbed by the rice, add a ladleful of warm stock. Repeat until all the stock is used. Add the Parmesan, butter and pumpkin pie mix. Remove from oven and let cool. Place in a refrigerator overnight. The next day, form into balls. When ready to serve, place risotto balls on a baking sheet and place in an oven preheated to 400°F for 8 to 10 minutes. Top with a piece of parsley before serving.
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Squash soup with Amaretto Cream web
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Squash soup with Amaretto Cream web
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  1. Preheat oven to 400 °F. Brush squash with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and place on a baking sheet. Roast for 40 minutes, or until the squash is tender. When cool, scoop out the squash and roughly chop. Set a large pot over medium-low heat; add remaining olive oil, onion, carrot and celery. Sauté until the vegetables are soft and then add garlic, chilies and curry powder. Continue to sauté for 2 to 3 minutes and then add apple cider. After half the cider has evaporated, add the chicken stock. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 30 to 40 minutes and then purée until smooth. Make an Amaretto cream by combining the heavy cream and Amaretto. To serve, ladle warm soup into bowls. Place cream in circle patterns and then using a toothpick, drag lines from the centre of the bowl to the edge to create a web-like appearance. For a festive garnish, add a spider to the soup. Cut a pitted black olive in half. Use one half for the body and then slice the other half in strips to create the legs of the spider.
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SIPS & BITES

Channel your inner vampire with these spooky sips and bites.

Vampire Shot
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Vampire Shot
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  1. Add 2 to 3 drops of red food colouring to 1/2 fluid ounce Tequila Rose Strawberry Liqueur. Pour 1/2 fluid ounce Kahlua into a shot glass. Slowly pour Tequila Rose Strawberry Liqueur over the back of a spoon into the shot glass to create a layered effect.
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Ghostly Cheesecake Truffles
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Ghostly Cheesecake Truffles
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  1. 1/2 cup cream cheese, 1/4 cup pumpkin pie mix, 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 1/2 cups Graham Cracker crumbs in a bowl; mix thoroughly. Roll into balls and place in refrigerator for an hour. Spread white icing (2 cups) over balls. Place balls on parchment-lined baking sheet and return to refrigerator until ready to serve. Add eyes to your truffles by adding dabs of red cake decorating gel to the balls.
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HALLOWEEN COCKTAILS

Snake bite
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Snake bite
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  1. Pour cider into a chilled highball glass. Gently pour Stout into the glass. To create a layered effect, gently pour the Stout over the back of a spoon.
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Glory Be!
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Glory Be!
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  1. Place beets and apple juice in a blender. Purée until smooth. Strain through a fine mesh strainer to remove solids. Place beet, apple juice, ginger simple syrup, lemon juice and whisky in an ice-filled cocktail shaker. Shake and then strain into a highball glass.
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Vampire’s Delight
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Vampire’s Delight
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  1. Put corn starch in a bowl. Slowly whisk in the corn syrup. Work slowly to avoid lumps. Whisk in the red food colouring until desired colour is achieved. Add vodka and chilled orange juice to a highball glass. Using a spoon, pour the “fake blood” down the side of the glass.
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Bloody Mary
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Bloody Mary
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  1. Fill a highball glass with ice. Add vodka, Tabasco, lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce. Top with tomato juice and garnish with lime wedge.
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