As I mentioned when I made my pumpkin favors, I decided to have my first official "dinner party" with a Halloween theme - primarily themed with the color black. Although it was lots of work and took up most of my weekend, I really enjoyed putting this together. Here are some shots from the evening:
I decided to make a nice, cold-weather comfort food, with a nice red tomato-juice-based sauce to resemble blood (just a bit...nothing realistic). It's the Brisket with Carrots & Onions by Ina Garten of Barefoot Contessa. I also served it with spinach dip (from The Fresh Market) and roasted potatoes:
Roasted Potatoes Recipe
1-3 lbs small, red-skinned potatoes
4 garlic cloves
1 TBSP Italian seasoning (or other dried herb of choice)
2 TSP salt
1 TSP pepper
4-5 TBSP olive oil
Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees Farenheit. Peel rough parts of skin and eyes from potatoes (I like a little skin left on, but feel free to peel the whole thing). Slice potatoes into 1/2-1" chunks (the smaller the chunks, the faster they'll cook). Put potatoes in baking dish. Top with garlic, spices, salt, pepper, and drizzle olive oil on top. Toss potatoes to cover and distribute seasoning and oil. Potatoes should be lightly covered. Bake for 40-60 minutes until to desired tenderness.
I went with an all black table setting...well, except for the plates. A black, sparkly table cloth from target, 3 black candles, & the black flowers/vases I crafted earlier
A closer look
An armoire in the living area got a scary makeover with these Michael's skull luminaries, red/black candies, and black web-covered branch
I wanted to do a themed dessert since the dinner wasn't too scary looking, so I chose the spider "creep-cakes" from the Martha Stewart mag and re-created them without the fangs.
Unfortunately, one snuck away and we haven't seen him since.
We even had some "Witches Brew" complete with spooky dry ice effects. The dry ice didn't last long though...I'll have to get a bigger piece for next year. Anywho, if you check out the recipe, I subbed Kool-Aid for the soda packets, and I opted for the dry ice effects over the "frozen hand"...I'm sure either is scary. The spiders seemed to enjoy the special effects, watching carefully with their beady, red eyes.
This rustic, hearty dinner was served on a candle-lit table.
I even had time to make little name cards for each place setting.
After dinner was over, the spiders were served up. Unfortunately, the black sugar on top turned everyone's mouths black (lips, teeth, tongue), but them seemed to think it was pretty funny, even reaching for a second spider snack. Hey, it could be a good prank if you want to get one of your friends.
All in all, I'd say it was a successful dinner thanks to special help from my honey. Thanks babe. Hope everyone enjoyed.