FOOD+DRINK Hellish Halloween Recipes Go on, admit it; you’re just as excited about Halloween as the kids – perhaps more so because whilst they can only dress up and go trick or treating, you can create the ultimate spooky dinner party for a more grown-up (but just as entertaining) Halloween party. Put “Thriller” on the iPod, dim the lights, pull the curtains, make sure everyone is wearing suitable (black) attire, and enjoy the most sophisticated of Halloween feasts. Make your guests shiver and shake with your strange and gruesome (gruesome looking, of course, but delicious tasting) offerings; perfect for werewolves, witches, ghosts, ghouls, and friends and family too! BY LISAMARIE LAMB Spooky Bread Rolls Bread rolls and soup go together like Morticia and Gomez, like Scooby Doo and Shaggy, like Frankenstein’s Monster and his Bride. So here is a fabulous recipe for Halloween bread rolls – these are great fun and will bring a smile to everyone's lips!! This recipe makes six rolls. Ingredients: • 225g strong plain wholemeal ﬂour • 1 tsp salt • 1 tsp sugar • 15g butter (softened) • 6g dried yeast • 150ml warm water (make sure it’s not hot or boiling) • 240ml balsamic vinegar Method: 1. Combine the ﬂour, sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and mix together (ﬁngertips work wonders here, but a mixer will do the job too). 2. Once combined, add the yeast and stir in. 3. Next, pour in all the water and stir again, this time using a wooden spoon to start with. Once the dough becomes harder to move around, go in with your hands (if it’s really sticky, make sure to add a little more ﬂour as you mix). 4. Turn the dough out onto a ﬂoured surface and knead it for around 5 minutes. 5. Pull the dough apart to make six round rolls and place on a greased baking tray. Blood Curdling Beetroot Soup with Feta Cheese The blood red colour of this sumptuous soup sets the tone for your Halloween bash! The garlic will keep you safe from any nearby vampires, and the salty feta is a great way to keep those troublesome demons at bay! Ingredients: • 500g beetroot (cooked and cut into chunks) • 250g tinned tomatoes • 1 large onion (diced) • 1 garlic clove (crushed) • 2 tbsp sunﬂower oil • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar • 750ml vegetable stock • 125g feta cheese Method: 1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (or gas mark 6). 2. Find a large saucepan, add the oil, and throw in the diced onion. Leave it to ‘sweat’ for around 8 minutes, but keep checking on your pan, as the onions shouldn’t be allowed to get too brown. 3. Once the onions are ready, throw in the garlic, leave for just one minute, and then add the beetroot, vegetable stock, tomatoes, and balsamic vinegar. Whack up the heat, bring to the boil, then simmer for 2 minutes. 4. Next, either transfer your soup (being very careful of the hot liquid) into a blender, or use a hand/stick blender, and blend the mixture until it’s totally smooth. 5. Just before serving, crumble feta cheese on the top of the soup. 36 6. Put a clean tea towel over the top and leave to prove for around half an hour. 7. Once they are ready, very slightly ﬂatten the rolls with the palm of your hand, and then using a sharp knife, cut 8 vertical slits around the roll (see photo below - the end result will look like a ﬂower before baked). Pop the rolls into the oven (preheated to 230ºC or gas mark 8) for 20 minutes 8. Whilst they are cooking, it’s time to make the balsamic vinegar reduction for the decoration. Put the vinegar into a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Leave it simmering over a low heat for around 15 minutes until the vinegar has thickened and reduced. You need it to be at a good consistency for decorating, so make sure it’s thick enough – the longer it simmers, the thicker it gets. But if it goes too far, you can always add water to bring it back. 9. When the balsamic vinegar reduction and the rolls have all cooled, decorate them with whatever spooky designs you like.