Halloween

A (Foodified!) Eleven O’Clock Halloween

by Becky on November 1, 2012 · 1 comment

in Food, Fun

As the sun went down last night, my husband was deep in a meatloaf-making effort in the kitchen, which has become his new favorite place.  What he does with meat ought to be considered immoral, it’s so obscenely good.  I can tell you that this dish involved ground beef, Italian sausage, cooked rice, grated potato, onions, a poblano pepper, a red pepper, some Worcestershire sauce, some apple cider vinegar, and who knows what else.  The proportions?  He probably couldn’t even tell you.  When it comes to cooking, he’s an off-roader, following recipes only for very general inspiration and then putting it in four wheel drive, so to speak.
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I make a good meatloaf, thank you very much, and one I’m proud of.  I follow the recipe with precision.  So it was rather surprising to see my girls just slaking down last night’s main course like they’d been starved for months.  Honestly!  They just ate and ate.  You would have thought they were getting caloried up for a sumo wrestling match today or something.  And even Goose, who normally chokes down one bite, if we’re lucky, ate two and pronounced the food tolerable.  I had two servings as well.  Then I thanked the cook heartily, went to work on the dishes, and proposed that we all watch The Nightmare Before Christmas, one of my all-time favorites.

In the absence of friends or tricks and treats, we decided it was going to be a family, food, and media night.  Goose and I broke out the cookies (more on those in a sec), grabbed the laptop, and got cozy on my bed, the computer and speakers placed just so.

So I never pick up store-bought cookies.  Never.  But here?  Hmm.  How can I describe the ones that have conquered us?  And there are several different brands, in fact.  Seems lots of folks wanted to try their hand at the concept, and none of them, surprisingly, have failed.  So:  you take a thin, crispy, toasted butter cookie.  Then you add a delightful layer of milk chocolate on top.  Not another layer of cookie.  It’s important for us all to establish that the layer we’re talking about is a layer of pure milk chocolate, and highly decent chocolate at that.  The brand “Milka” makes an excellent version of this cookie, but theirs is pricey.  The store Carrefour makes an equally nice, though different tasting, version for half the price, but that store is a mile’s walk, and while I always pick up several boxes when I go, they don’t last, they just don’t.  Our favorite store nearby carries yet another brand, same price, and I decided that I alone probably account for half the inventory that has to go back on their shelves each week after I’ve been there.  I’m waiting for the moment when the checkers start smiling knowingly as they ring up my purchases.

But back to the movie.  Ahh–what fun!  I don’t know when I last tucked in to watch a movie!  We begged our teen girls to join us, but one was deep in a Shannon Hale book (more coming up on that in another post), and the other was slaving on a college application, muttering that she just didn’t have enough extracurricular activities on her resume (patently untrue, by the way).

Perhaps the crowning touch to the evening were the Trolli candies my husband had picked up.  After all, you can’t have a serious Halloween evening without a tub of gummi candies in nuclear colors and fashioned to look like witches, spiders, skulls, cats, vampires, skeletons, ghosts, etcetera, etcetera.  Disgusting, but they worked.

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Down on the Ramblas, in the old part of town, street performers and artists abound. Last Saturday, we collided with some of the Halloween sort. The spectacle particularly impressed our youngest (the caboose!), who often goes by the nickname Goose. I was honestly blown away by the imagination and effort that went into these costumes and the absolute stillness their display demanded. Some of these guys–though there was a woman or two in the mix–seemed hardly to be breathing. And all of them woould remain completely still until you put a centavo or two in their bucket. Then, totally in character, they would spring to life, dazzling the crowd, then falling silent again. Quite a show, and highly entertaining to our nine-year-old, who, as he wants to be an inventor, really liked the tableau of Thomas Edison.

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But the Devil was impressive, too. His eyes . . . freaky! You’ve never seen anything like this! I was half afraid he was going to spirit Goose away to some Halloween netherworld and turn him into a Boy Devil.

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Oh, wait! He’s already a boy devil. (Wink wink.) Happy Halloween!

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