Today nine of my favourite food, craft and lifestyle bloggers await behind nine haunted houses (undoubtedly catching up on their sleep) with an array of scary holiday treats created just for you. At the end of this post you’ll find links to the next houses on the block, which will in turn direct you to the next, and so on. It’s like real trick-or-treating, isn’t it? Except that you won’t accidentally eat a dozen mini chocolate bars or need to bundle a snowsuit under your costume, and in fact we won’t even know if you don’t put on a costume at all. (Or hey-if you’ve eaten way too many mini chocolate bars you can always blame it on the “bulky snowsuit” under your clothes.) Just curl up with your laptop and a mug of something warm (and/or boozy) and come visit the people in our neighbourhood.
I have to admit I like the idea of candy apples much more than the apples themselves; the caramel variety is almost impossible to get a grip on, the caramel slipping across the smooth apple skin as you plow it with your teeth. And I’m never quite sure how to approach the hard red candy kind; there is no way to be delicate when sweet shards are shattering all over your face, sticking to your cheeks. That said, I can’t let Halloween go by without making them.
While we’re being honest, I may as well admit that I don’t generally make the caramel kind because those little square caramels and I have a history; namely I was completely and all-encompassingly addicted to them a few years back. It was right after W was born, when people kept saying to me “you’re breastfeeding – you can eat whatever you want and you’ll totally lose weight!” Bollocks. I of course wanted to believe this and so put it to the test, downing my own weight in caramels daily. Their little wrappers were everywhere, even though I grabbed them and stuck them in my pockets anytime I went from room to room. I got panicky whenever my stash ran low. When I got a batch that were on the hard side, I carried them in my pockets until they softened up. Two months and 25 pounds later (I’m not even exaggerating) I had to quit cold turkey.
Even if I made the caramel from scratch, which is easy enough, I don’t trust myself not to overdo the taste testing – I have been known to singe my tongue licking out the pot. (Yes, using a spatula.) Besides, I love the look of red candy apples. I can admire them, and let the kids go bonkers for them, and not feel like I’m missing out on actually eating them.
Sponge toffee was my favorite treat (OK, one of many) when I was a kid – my Mom would buy little blocks of it wrapped in cellophane for my sisters and I at the grocery store, and when we went skiing we’d always stop in Banff for chocolate covered chunks of it. (My sisters were always lured in by the candy apples.)
Whooo’s Next? To see what our other blog hosts have cooked up for your creating / eating / decorating pleasure, click on one of the haunted homes below!