Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Ghostly Hollows Dip

This dip is a fantastic way to kick off your Halloween Dinner Party, bring to an office celebration, a pot luck,  or add to the party buffet. It's full of everything everyone loves; salsa, cream cheese, guacamole and ghost chips!
Ghostly Hollows Dip 

To make ghost chips:
20 Flour Tortillas
3/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
3/4 teaspoon Ground Coriander
3/4 teaspoon Paprika
1/4 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
Ghost Cookie Cutter

To make Salsa:
4 Roma Tomatoes
1/2 Large Onion
1 Serrano Pepper
1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Fresh Cilantro
Dash Salt

To make guacamole:
 2 Avocados
1 Small Tomato
1/4 cup Onion
Dash Lemon Juice
1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder

You also need:
8 ounces Cream Cheese~softened
2-3 tablespoons Sour Cream

To make the ghost chips, cut out the chips with your
cookie cutter. I got 4 ghosts out of every tortilla.
  Keep the scraps and bake them to use in tortilla
soup or in another recipe.
Place the ghosts on a cookie sheet covered with parchment
paper. You could also spray the sheet with pan spray
instead of using the parchment. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a small bowl, mix together the garlic powder,
ground coriander, paprika, and pepper.
Lightly spray the tortillas with pan spray.
Sprinkle the ghosts with the dry mix. I sprinkled half with
the dry mix and half with garlic powder only.
Both taste great!
Bake for 5-8 minutes or until just a little brown on the edges.
Let's make Salsa!
Cut the 4 roma tomatoes in half.
Cut the halves in quarters.
Chop the quarters into bite size pieces.
Put the chopped tomatoes in a bowl, and cut the
ends off of the onion.
Peel the onion, and cut the onion in half. Take the half
and cut 3-4 slices from it.
Chop the slices into bite size pieces.
Chop the top and bottom off of the serrano chili.
Wear gloves if possible, and be careful of inhaling the
aroma of the pepper. It is extremely strong, and it can
make you cough, and feel as if it is in your throat. You
also should be careful to not get any pepper
juice on your skin. It itches!!
Cut it down the middle.
Wash the peppers under cold water. This is where you
need to be careful of the aroma. While you hold the
pepper under cold water scrape the seeds and the
insides until the inside of the seed is bare.
It should look like this. Slice each piece down
the length of it.
Chop each piece into very small pieces.
Cut about 7 leaves of cilantro. Roll them together
and chop into very small pieces.
Now, our guacamole!
I didn't take a lot of pics for this, but it is pretty
much what we did for the salsa.
Peel 2 avocados.
Place in bowl.
Smash them down with a fork.
Chop your small tomato, and put it in with the avocado.
Chop your onion, like we did when we made salsa.
Add it to the tomatoes and avocados.
Add the lemon juice and garlic powder.
Mix or smash together.
Add the cream cheese to the salsa.
It should be soft to mix easy.
Place the salsa cream cheese mix in a pie plate.
Level it across the top.
Add the guacamole on top of the salsa.
Add a circle of sour cream.
I wish I would have made the sour cream in the shape
of a tombstone. It would have looked
great with ...
the dancing ghosts!!
(Scary music here!)

Thanks for joining me today.
See you next time for our
Creature from the Deep Soup!

I'm Off To See The Grocer!

It's Tuesday, and I am already running to catch up! The story of my life lately! Anyway, here is the menu and grocery list for this week. It's all about Halloween!


Appetizer~Ghostly Hollows Dip
10 Flour Tortillas
Garlic Powder
Ground Coriander
Ground Pepper
8oz. Cream Cheese
4 Romas Tomatoes
Large Onion
Sour Cream
2 Avocados

Soup~Broccoli Cheese
1 1/2 cups Chicken Broth
4 cups Broccoli Florets
2 cups Milk
4 oz. Shredded Cheddar Cheese
Black Pepper to taste

Entree-Yummy Mummy Calzones 
 2 loaves of Frozen Bread -1lb each
8 ounces shredded Mozzarella Cheese
1/2 cup Pizza Sauce
small Onion
1 Egg
2 Olives

Side Dish-Family Recipe Pumpkin Bread
Baking Soda
Corn Oil
4 Eggs
2 cups Pumpkin
Cream Cheese

Dessert-Candy Corn Shooters
Candy Corn M and M's
Heavy Whipping Cream
Sweetened Condensed Milk
Yellow, Orange Food Color
4 oz White Chocolate

Thanks for joining me!

Hope to see you this week!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Club Baked~Sawdust Pie

Today at Club Baked, as we work our way through the cookbook, Baked Explorations, we are making Sawdust Pie. That's a great name, isn't it? The pie is similar to a pecan pie, but with a twist. This book we have been using, written by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito, constantly surprises me, as all the recipes appear to be classic, but with a twist. That must be what makes it all taste so good. Because it is all good! I haven't been disappointed yet!
 I made a couple changes to the recipe. First, I used sweetened coconut, and I cut it down to 1 cup. It's what I had on hand. I also took note of a small side bar to the recipe that stated that adding some chocolate might not be such a bad idea. Well, I didn't think it would be such a bad idea either, so I added 4 ounces of Scharffen Berger semi sweet chocolate.  This is the first time I have used this chocolate. I prefer the Callebaut whenever I need a high end chocolate, but this was great tasting.  This is a delicious pie! Very fall~ish, and perfect for a dinner party or Thanksgiving!
   For the complete recipe, stop by and see Tessa, our hostess for this recipe.  Her blog, The Cookin' Chemist, is full of wonderful recipes. 

Thanks for joining me today!
The Freshman Cook is all moved in and ready to celebrate
Halloween with a week long menu and  holiday tablescape!

Stop by tomorrow to see our menu!


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Ghost Kitchen!

The Freshman Cook has been busy moving. I won't be posting this week due to a kitchen malfunction, but  I will be back next week with a fun Halloween menu and party plans to soothe even the most restless of spirits!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Halloween Haunted House

The first time I made this Halloween Haunted House my son was 5.  He was my little helper, and he still remembers working on this house with me. He will be 22 years old this week! This Halloween Haunted House is what memories are made from. I hope it becomes special to you and your family too!!
Halloween Haunted House
5 Bags of Milk Chocolate Candy Melts
Chocolate Rocks
Stick Pretzels
1 Sugar Cone
2 Cake Cones
Graham Crackers
Mini Nilla Wafers
Box of Reese's Pieces
1 package of Black Twizzlers
1 package of Black Licorice Bites
4 Mini Kit Kats(like from a Halloween Candy Bag)
Orange Gum Balls
Orange and Green Jelly Belly
1 package Orange Wafer Cookies
you will also need:
16 oz of Powdered Sugar
1 teaspoon Vanilla
3 Egg Whites
1/2 teaspoon Cream of Tartar
Aluminum Foil
2 Decorating Bags
3 Cookie Sheets
2 Wilton Tips~#2 and #2A   
Wilton Color Violet
 You can build this house over as many days as you want.
So you can stop at any spot in  the directions.
Measure out foil to  the size of your cookie sheets.
Loosely crumble the foil. This is your design for the
walls of the house. Don't crumble too tight because
the foil might tear when you unwrap it.
Carefully unwrap the foil and spread it in the cookie sheet.
Repeat this for all 3 cookie sheets. Set aside.
Start melting the chocolate candy melts.
Each cookie sheet should 1 1/2 bags of melted chocolate
on each one.
Pour the melted chocolate over the foil.
Repeat this for all three cookie sheets.
After I poured the chocolate, I realized that
chocolate was not deep enough for the pieces
we would be cutting out. I made the foil smaller to accommodate this.
You can fix this problem by using more chocolate
on each cookie sheet, but I was using the
largest pan available to me at the time.
After the chocolate is dry in the cookie sheet, place
a pattern on the chocolate. You need 2 of each pattern
except the door, which is cut later from graham crackers.

Score the chocolate around the pattern. I used a small
paring knife. It seemed to give me better control.
Here is you scored piece. Because we are working with chocolate
there is nothing we won't be able to fix, so don't be to bother with
Cut the chocolate along the scored lines.
Here are your two top side pieces.
This is what is left after I took out the 2 pieces.
The leftover can be remelted and used again.
Gotta love that candy melt!!
Here is the large pattern of the front of the house.
Continue to cut out the other pieces until you have
2 fronts, 2 bottom sides, 2 top sides.
 Make the icing. In a mixing bowl, place the egg whites,
the powdered sugar, the vanilla, and the cream of tartar.
Mix on high speed for 7-10 minutes until very stiff.
Color the icing with the Violet color.
When I was cutting out the large piece, the edge broke.
No worries.
Melt some of the chocolate melt, take a little and put it
on the edge of the large piece, and put small piece
on to it. I guess you could say you are
chocolate glueing it!
You can't even see it. Give it few minutes to dry.
I did not take pictures of this, but take the cake
circle, melt more chocolate. and spread the
chocolate on the circle. Give it about 1 hour to dry.
Set the large piece back on to the circle. Set it a little towards the
back of the circle so it gives you a front yard.
Attach a bottom side piece by piping  icing along the side seam.
Attach the front piece of the house with the piping.
Attach the other side piece.
Here is what I was talking about when I said that
mistakes can be fixed. This piece of chocolate was not cut
right when I originally cut it out. So I used the paring knife
to shave the edge. I just sawed a little at a time so as not to
crack the piece.
See the crack in the back. I just ignored it.
Icing is a wonderful fixer. Besides, it's a haunted house.
It can have a few holes.
Attach the top sides with the frosting.
Don't worry if it doesn't match up perfectly.
Attach the graham cracker pieces to the top to create the roof.
Run a bead of icing along the open space above the
bottom side.
Attach a graham cracker piece to the piece above.
Attach a piece to the other side.
In the front of the house put the kit kat.
Attach them with icing or chocolate.
Put 3 strips on the bottom, 3 on the top of those,
and 1 more on the top of that.
Cut out the graham cracker door with the pattern.
Pipe around the door with the #2 tip , and pipe a window.
Attach to the front above the steps.
Cut away a section of the cone to fit the roof of the house.
Attach the cone. Don't worry about the icing on the roof.
Attach a black gumball on top of the cone. Cut off the tip of the
sugar cone, and attach to the top of the gumball.
Decorate like the picture, or add your own touch.
Close up!
Cut 2 cake cones to fit on to each front corner of the house.
Decorate with icing and jelly bellies.
Another view.
Attach licorice pieces to the top front and the bottom front
seams. Do the same to the back of the house.
Attach the vanilla wafers to create roof shingles.
Decorate around the tower.
(Please ignore the mess behind the haunted house!!)
Attach a licorice bite to each side of the door.
Add the top swirl before attaching.
Attach chocolate rocks to the edge of the house, wherever
you want. There is no wrong way. Make the windows by
cutting the orange wafer cookies to just use the top piece.
Pipe the window to look like panes.
Use the other piece of the wafer cookie to make the shutters
 Cut it in half. Pipe a design. Attach the shutters with frosting.
Put a window and shutters on each side bottom.
Attach the top window on both sides.
Take the wafers apart  just like above.
Shutters should run long ways.
Attach a Reeses pieces to each window top.
Add an orange gumball to create a pumpkin.
Here are a few pictures so you can see placement of things.
Here are the pattern pieces for the house:

These need to be enlarged by 4 times the size.
Happy Halloween!

This Halloween Haunted House is participating in the
Howl-oween Trick and Treats Craftathon 
at the Rhinestone Beagle.
Drop  by and check out all the really cute,
Halloween ideas and crafts.
It's all month long!! Don't miss it!!

The Freshman Cook is also participating in
Wickedly Creative Halloween Ideas Party.
Stop by for lots of great ideas!

Stop by Monster Mash Bash  to see all the
fun and wonderful Halloween ideas! The Freshman Cook
is there also!

If you have any questions or problems with my 
directions, please don't hesitate to contact me at
I will be glad to answer anything you need to know,
if I can.