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Ghoulish Eats

With the last bit of sunlight still looming over the horizon, eager trick or treaters everywhere were faced with one last obstacle before taking on the night: Halloween Dinner. It was the one sacrifice we each needed to make to assure our parents that we would at least try to consume something with even the slightest hint of nutritional value before gorging ourselves on nothing but candy. For me this was Halloween’s greatest trick. A nightmare inducing, slow paced, monotonous waste of time where I was forced to consume vegetables against my will. Each minute I spent trapped at the table felt like an eternity.


Every mouthful of food I took in seemed to take longer to chew than the last. I could hear the slow ticking of the kitchen clock echoing in my brain as I reluctantly lowered my fork for more. “How many bites?” I would ask impatiently.


My mother, not one for games, would usually just sigh. For years this was our continued back and forth, an almost choreographed dance if you will. My mother eventually grew tired of fighting me and opted instead to bring in the big guns: my Nana. My Nana was a tough cookie who ran a tight ship. She didn’t take kindly to nonsense of any kind especially during dinner. This, my mother thought, was the perfect solution for our Halloween dinner fiascos. Personally I was in favor of later dinners, post trick or treating, when my adrenaline would have started to subside, but I was overruled. My grandmother’s first dinner as executive chef went no better than my mother’s had previously. Once again I sat reluctantly poking at my food counting down the seconds until I could free myself. My grandmother, undeterred, decided that for her second Halloween she would try something altogether different. Maybe, as it was All Hallows Eve, she could bend her own rules just once to make her dinner a tad more festive. Of course also knowing that I had a strange love for the macabre gave her a few new wicked ideas. Much to my mother’s horror, and my sheer delight, my grandmother turned Halloween dinner on its ear. What was once just an average supper on an anything but average night soon became a meal fit for a demon king. To start my grandmother carefully crafted miniature decapitated hot dog fingers served in a pool of ketchup blood. That alone was magnificent, but she didn’t stop there.



For our second course we were served a platter of deviled egg eyeballs with green olive pupils.



I’m not usually a fan of eggs, but these I giddily swallowed whole. My mother however found it harder to eat. This I found to be deeply amusing, but I kept it to myself. For her third and final course, my Nana saved the best for last. In carefully carved skeleton bread bowls my grandmother had prepared an American Chopped Suey brain served in a rich tomato blood sauce. By keeping the noodles slightly undercooked she was able to sculpt them into an almost disturbingly realistic brain shape.



My mother looked as if she was going to be sick, but I for one was ready to dig in. This was the first Halloween I can remember where I was actually sad to see dinner come to a close. My mother was thrilled, albeit still slightly disturbed, and decided from that point on my grandmother would be in charge of all future Halloween dinners. I for one did not object.


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Vaporman87 Posted on Oct 13, 2015 at 08:57 PM

@pikachulover: Me too, but unfortunately my house is not really big enough for something like that. Maybe an outside party would work, since we have our new deck. Then it would be a matter of getting enough people to come at the same time.

pikachulover Posted on Oct 13, 2015 at 08:17 PM

I've always wanted to throw a party and serve crazy Halloween food and drinks.

kidcoffee Posted on Oct 13, 2015 at 04:16 PM

I was probably one of the pickiest eaters of all time. I swear if it didn't have peanut butter on it, I wasn't interested, or at least I wasn't until meal times became interactive. There is something to be said for getting to play with your food that changes everything. Even food I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole otherwise became a joy to devour. Of course when Halloween was long over I found the same joy with tacos. Not quite as fun as Halloween dinner, but getting to build my own meal did have its own unique charm.

Vaporman87 Posted on Oct 13, 2015 at 03:47 PM

Wow. I might have to have my wife use some of these trick to get my kids to eat... well, anything really besides junk. What a creative Nana you had!

This was a great subject too... one of those that hasn't gotten any article love yet. Great choice for an article.

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