Cooking

Wicked Good

Turn your Halloween cocktail hour into witching hour
Halloween Cocktail Party
Candy corn bark, spicy popcorn and kimchi deviled eggs | Photo: Tasting Table

It's one of the few days where kitsch is completely acceptable–nay, encouraged. It's totally okay to put on your best polyester get-up, eat more mini candy bars than humanly possible and repeat "spoooooky" in your best Count Dracula voice.

It's okay to have a little fun with your Halloween cocktail party spread, too. So we came up with one that tips its (witch's) hat to the holiday's campy spirit while satisfying monstrous appetites.

Since candy is a must, we decided to combine the greatest hits in a sweet-and-salty candy bark (see the recipe). Kit Kat bars, Peanut M&Ms and candy corn (of course) are sprinkled into bittersweet chocolate to create a one-bite version of a stellar trick-or-treat haul.

Savory snacks should be devilishly delicious, like a twist on the classic deviled egg (see the recipe). Set them upright (a sliver off one end does the trick) and mix kimchi into the filling for kick and a festive orange hue.

Top freshly popped popcorn and nuts with a mixture of bacon grease and Worcestershire sauce (see the recipe) and crisp in an oven for a smoky treat your guests will be eating like, well, candy.

Of course, no masquerade party would be complete without a cauldron of something enchantingly boozy to gather around. Make Drinks Editor Jim Meehan's Applejack-o'-Lantern your centerpiece: It's an autumnal mixture of apple brandy, pumpkin beer, maple syrup and citrus, plus a grating of cinnamon to garnish (see the recipe).

Expecting a gaggle of ghouls? Add duck-fat Chex Mix, spicy pumpkin-seed brittle and homemade Snickers-style bars to the mix.

String up fake cobwebs, and you've got yourself a frighteningly good time (we couldn't help ourselves).

Get the recipes:
Candy Corn Bark
Popcorn Party Mix
Kimchi Deviled Eggs
Applejack-o'-Lantern

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