Halloween and Bonfire Night Food

Spooky food and delicious nibbles for cold winter evenings spent outside
  • Parkin

    Parkin is the easiest cake ever.....even if you don't think you can make cake, you can make this. It's traditionally served around Bonfire night
  • Vanilla Fudge

    Making fudge with someone who means a lot to you is a right of passage for any child, be it a grandparent, parent, auntie or family friend. Just don't eat it too often and always brush your teeth well afterwards.
  • Jelly Brains for Halloween

    These take around 20 minutes to set due to use of Geloozoon or Gellan Gum, a molecular gastronomy powder which makes instant setting jelly. If you don't have any of this in your kitchen (!) then you can use agar agar which sets pretty quickly or gelatine*.
  • Halloween cupcakes and glow in the dark icing

    The children at Splat Cooking's Saturday morning club decorated Halloween cupcakes this weekend and here are the amazing photos.  We also made glow in the dark icing, although it's not really glow in the dark as you need a black or UV light to really make it shine but it does work.  You will need:

    Powdered fondant icing sugar, the turquoise packet by Tate and Lyle or Silver Spoon and either Illuzoon which can be purchased from specialise molecular gastonomy websites or if you can't get hold of that you can use tonic water (it contains quinine which reacts with the UV to make it glow in the dark) and some lemon juice as the tonic water is bitter.

    Mix the illuzoon with water as per the tub instructions or mix the tonic water with some lemon juice and then use either liquid to make up a thick sticky icing, use on cupcakes and here's the effect, they're fab

    youtube.com/watch?v=vMsz3ETHT7g … http://fb.me/2ejsH37BQ


  • Beetroot and Walnut Hummus - great for Halloween

    Beetroot hummus is healthy, packed with vitamins and antioxidants and also brilliant for using at Halloween parties for a gruesome purple dip.
  • Soda Bread

    Soda bread has to be the easiest bread on the planet, no kneading, no proving and really quick to make, add sundried tomatoes and pumpkin seeds for extra flavour and crunch.
  • Pumpkin Soup

    A lovely warming soup, great for sharing on Halloween or Bonfire Night. If you can get hold of small squash or mini pumpkins try slicing the top off, scooping out the seeds and using them as a bowl to serve the soup in, looks amazing
  • Halloween Soul Cakes

    Ingredients: makes 12 cakes

    good pinch of saffron
    2 teaspoons milk, and a little extra
    150g butter
    150g caster sugar
    2 eggs
    500g plain flour
    1 tablespoon mixed spice
    1 teaspoon allspice
    3 tablespoons currants

    How to make soul cakes … WASH YOUR HANDS

    1. Ask an adult to put the oven on to 180c / Gas Mark 4.
    2. Crush the saffron to a powder in the pestle and mortar, add the milk and pound to combine.
    3. Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, add the eggs, flour and spices, beat the mixture well.  Stir in the currants and add the saffron and milk mixture.  Add a little more milk if the mixture is too dry, it should form a soft dough.
    4.  Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and shape into flat cakes around 5-6cm across.  Place on a greased baking tray.
    5. Ask an adult to put into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until lightly golden.  Leave them on the tray to cool for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.

    Soul Cakes originate from the Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced ‘Sow-in’), which means Summers End, more commonly known as All Hallows Eve or Halloween.  The festival was to mark the end of summer and the beginning of winter, offerings were made to their gods to thank them for the harvest and pray for sufficient food to keep people fed over the winter months and for the health of their families.  This was also thought to be the start of the Celtic New Year.   A little bit like our Harvest Festival now.  This was also the time of year when people who had died were remembered, stories were told about them to keep their memories alive.

    The tradition moved on through the centuries and developed into Soul Cakes. These were baked and left on the porch with a glass of milk or wine for the souls of loved ones who had died.  On All Hallows Day or All Saints Day, 1 November, children and poor people would sing the song below for their love ones to earn the treat of a Soul cake that evolved into the modern day version of trick or treating.

    A soul, a soul, a soul cake.
    Please god missus a soul cake.
    An apple, a pear, a plum or a cherry,
    Any good thing to make us merry.
    Up with your kettles and down with your pans
    Give us an answer and we'll be gone
    Little Jack, Jack sat on his gate
    Crying for butter to butter his cake
    One for St Peter, two for St Paul,
    Three for the man who made us all.

    Another version sung in parts of the Midlands and Lancashire is:

    Soul! Soul! For an apple or two
    If you have no apples, pears will do.
    If you have no pears, money will do.
    If you have no money,  God bless you!
    Often the children would be accompanied by a hobby horse (very much an echo of the ancient Celtic past here), which, typically, was called the Hooden Horse at this time of year.


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