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Halloween recipes 10/31/12

Get spooky with these Halloween-inspired recipes including Black Widow Cake and Slimy Snails.

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Black Widow Cake
Serves 8-12 slices

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 45 minutes

For the cake:
100g soft eating liquorice pieces
175ml water
250ml vegetable oil
165g self-raising flour
100g sugar
25g cocoa powder
50g walnut pieces, ground
2 tbsp gram flour mixed with 4 tbsp water
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp baking powder
Few drops vanilla extract

For the icing:
60g icing sugar
½ tsp food colouring (optional)
1 tbsp water

To decorate:
Black icing pen
1 piece of soft eating liquorice

1. Preheat oven to 180C/ Gas Mark 4. Chop the liquorice into small pieces and put in a small pan with 175ml water. Boil for about 5 minutes until the liquorice is starting to go soft and mushy. Remove from the heat and pour in the vegetable oil, stirring well.
2. Put the remaining cake ingredients into a large mixing bowl and stir in the liquorice mixture.
3. Put in a small (18cm) lined cake tin and bake in the oven for 35 minutes, or until a skewer comes out of the middle of the cake clean.
4. Leave in the cake tin to cool for about 10 minutes, then remove onto a wire rack to cool completely.
5. Mix together the icing sugar, food colouring (if using) and water, then spread over the cooled cake with a palette knife, gently and evenly. Using the black icing pen draw a web pattern on top of the icing. Then make a spider out of the spare piece of liquorice!


Slimy Snails

Makes 12 snails
Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 15 minutes
Can be vegan*

For the snails:
12 large conchiglioni rigati pasta shells (cook a few extra in case any split)
2 little gem lettuce
50g mangetout
200g cream cheese or vegan cream cheese*
3 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
3 tbsp fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
2 spring onions, finely chopped (including some green)
4 cocktail gherkins, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 lime, zest and juice
½ cucumber, sliced

For the slime trail:
5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp mixed green fresh herbs, chopped

1. Cook the pasta shells for 10-15 minutes. Once the pasta is cooked, but still firm, drain and cool down quickly under cold water. Set the shells aside.
2. Remove the larger of the little gem leaves and set these aside. Shred the remaining leaves. Make antennae for later by cutting two of the mangetout length ways (you need 24 slithers in total) and finely chop up the rest to go in the filling for the next step.
3. Combine the cream cheese, coriander, parsley, spring onions, gherkins, chopped mangetout, garlic, lime and 3 tbsp of the shredded little gem leaves.
4. Assemble the snails by stuffing the filling into the shells and place each one onto a slice of cucumber. Place each snail onto an individual little gem leaf. Add the mangetout antennas to the snails.
5. Make the snail slime by whisking together the olive oil and herbs with a fork. Drizzle this over the snail and leave to make a slime trail.
6. Serve on a big platter with any spare shredded lettuce, cucumber or slime in the middle of the plate for presentation. Guests should pick up a piece of lettuce, with a slimy snail on top, to eat!

© The Vegetarian Society 2012. Visit for more recipes and information.

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Laura Cooke is the editor and creator of the Veggie Bunch website and community.

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