I think I’ve mentioned before that I am not, personally, much of a Halloween guy. It’s fun and all, but dressing up in goofy clothes and imposing on people is something that I am frowned on for normally. It’s just not cool anymore when everybody is doing it. I get into it for the kids sake and I manage to have a pretty good time. I mean, when there is candy involved how hard can it be to go with the flow. No matter how hard I try, however, I just can’t get into Halloween Cuisine.
By Halloween Cuisine, I don’t mean the candy. I have said that is great and my cardioligist will vouch for my enthusiasm for it. I mean actual food . . . kind of. I mean food that is made up to look like things that you would never, ever eat in a million years. I am talking about finger sandwiches that look like actual fingers and little meatballs covered with ketchup and made to look like bloody rats. Not only do I not get it . . . I take offense. This is food we are messing with.
Last year my mother-in-law had us over for “Halloween Dinner”. The fact that Halloween is actually staging it’s own dinner event is further evidence of it’s evil plan to try to move into the holiday big leagues with Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter. Mom served several courses of “eerie” foods dressed with bugs and “blood” other contrived grossnesses. The dessert is what took the cake. Get it? Dessert . . . took the cake?
Served in something made up to look like a cat box was a mixture of pudding, Tootie Rolls, maybe some Milk Duds and something to resemble kitty litter. She proudly presented her Kitty Litter Cake. I could only stare in disbelief. Really? I like pudding, I like Tootsie Rolls. But when you make the Tootsie Roll look like cat poop I am out.
I just don’t get it. Halloween is about being scary and spooky. Eating kitty litter or fingers isn’t scary. It’s gross. It’s like the ever present “Ax-in-the-Head” mask. You see a dozen of them every Trick or Treat expedition. It is a rubber full-head mask of an unattractive man with an ax in his head. Not scary . . . just gross.
So this year we had what I am sure will be an annual talk that will be entitled “Why is Dad a Jerk About Halloween Food?” My kids see spooky/gross food as pure fun. My wife feels the same way. I just don’t get it. It’s not scary. If you want to scare me with food. Jump out of the kitchen dressed as Sarah Palin, throw a turnip at my head and scream “IRS audit!”
Charlie is all about Halloween and scary food. This year he asked to make Mummy Dogs for Halloween Dinner. He took hot dogs and wrapped canned croissant dough around them. After coming out of the oven he decorated them with ketchup eyes. He was very proud. I can get behind the Mummy Dogs even though mine had a different level of spookiness/grossness because they were Mummy Tofu Dogs.
“What is scary about bloody finger food and that stuff?” I asked.
“I don’t know,” he said. “It’s just cool and funny.”
I firmly believe that food should be not funny. I am serious about not being hungry at dinner time. “Isn’t Halloween supposed to be scary?” I asked.
“I guess so,” he answered.
“But what if it’s gross and not so scary.”
“I know,” I said. “I can get some liver and some sweetbreads and we can have those for dinner on Halloween. If you are looking for questionable food, we can do it for real.”
“No way! Liver would be gross!” he exclaimed. “What are sweetbreads?” he asked. His face told me he was hoping for something doughnut-like. I explained what a thymus gland was.
“That’s not scary,” he said. “That’s gross.”
I guess we are stuck with finger sandwiches and Kitty Litter Cake.
Thanks for reading. Keep your little ghouls and goblins and Power Rangers safe this Halloween. We’ll talk again soon on This Side of the Diaper.
I guess we are stuck with Mummy Dogs.