Slumber Party Massacre Event and Recipes Part 1

                                                        It was a Slumber Party Massacre at our place for Halloween.

      This year, I couldn’t wait to dig out this truly awesome 80’s gem of a slasher flick that inspired our annual Halloween party. This greatness graced my VCR back in 1982, and became a birthday party sleepover staple for years thereafter. I subjected my squeamish friends and younger cousins to plenty of good (and bad) horror, but I think this is the one that made the memory books. I know it always brings back “the good ole days” for me…

As I mentioned, we chose this as our Halloween party theme, but you could just as easily copy my ideas for any type of big girl slumber party/ horror movie night. I had so many cool ideas and great recipes going with this party that I had to break this blog into two sections. An original post that talks mostly of the party details and a sequel that will offer you some insight into what makes this film so righteous.

Invites: Aside from social media event creating, I looked high and low for some simple Slumber Party invitations that I could bloody up for this party, but eventually gave up and made my own. I just cut pink card stock into simple squares and rubber stamped an old vintage telephone image on the front. Okay, so the phone image totally invoked naughty memories of a few prank phone calls we made back in the day at some of my notorious sleepovers.

In the Massacre font on my handy computer, I typed the heading “This is no prank! You are invited to a Slumber Party Massacre.” and then scribed the party details on the back. Once the invitations were complete, I gave them each a good splattering of red tempera paint blood by just thinning the paint with water and tapping a small paint brush over them. (Being a preschool teacher has its perks when it comes to getting crafty).

What to Wear?  Duh. It’s a slumber party. Wear pajamas! We had a white trash hubby wear his stained wife beater under a dirty bathrobe and cowboy boots. We had “grown up” Superman underoos, a cute little Cindy Loo Who in pigtails, and the ultimate in dorky-Angry Bird full footie jammies. But if I do say so myself, I stole the party dressed in my Daryl Dixon pajamas. My ensemble was fully complimented with my homemade DD swag-crossbow earrings, zombie/crossbow bracelet, and zombie heart hair bows for my piggy tails.

Setting the Scene: I wanted a bloody mess! Everything that stood still was drenched in white vinyl tablecloths splattered with the red tempera blood I used on the invites. I even spent the cash on a blood splattered shower curtain for the bathroom. Our local dollar store had vinyl blood drip wall borders and various paper instruments of torture that I implemented into our gory décor. A good horror buddy of mine sent me a huge batch of chilling horror soundtracks to play, and I incorporated some of my 80’s stash to mix. After all, this is a movie of the 80’s.

I got my Daryl Dixon swag on…

White candles dripping blood, candy filled glassware smudged with bloody fingerprints, and blood soaked body parts scattered haphazardly along the table suggests the Driller Killer crashed the party. But the real prize was my sickening centerpiece-a stack of pizza boxes oozing with blood and body parts. Severed limb pizza anyone??  To pay homage to the holiday; the reason for the celebration, I slathered corn syrup-based blood over different sized pumpkins. And keep in mind, in my world, anything looks appetizing on a tattered blood-soaked tablecloth.

Corn Syrup Blood recipe: Add 1 small bottle of light corn syrup and 1 small bottle of dark corn syrup to a nonstick pot. Add an entire 2 ounce bottle of red food coloring, stirring with a wooden spoon. This makes a bright slasher movie red. If you want more gore, add about 12-20 drops of black food coloring and a couple drops of blue.

         

            Other Fun Stuff: We played Human Scavenger Hunt. I made a list of slumber party related statements and guests had to find people at the party that either agreed or matched the statement. Who has played Bloody Mary or a Ouija board, the lame person at the party who didn’t wear a costume, someone who had attended a slumber party before, someone who had made/eaten “special brownies”, etc. I took a lot of guidance from the movie and my own slumber party experiences when creating the list. Whoever had the most names on their paper was named winner.

Something else fun…I found Sweet Tart candy teeth and gummi body parts at Walmart of all places!

Snacks and Goodies: Reminiscing about food typically found at slumber parties and, of course, consulting the movie, I came up with a pretty gruesome and fun menu. Savory snacks included Pizza Crescent Rolls, Deadgirls in a Blanket, assorted chips and dips, and a popcorn bar featuring three flavors of popcorn-Bloody Mary, Apple Cinnamon, and Chocolate Caramel. Sweet treats included Driller Killer cupcakes, Root Beer Float pillow pies, Deadblondies, and Scary Berry Pizza. Our signature cocktail of the night was called Truth or Dare.  (You will find the recipe for Bloody Mary popcorn in an upcoming blog…muwahahahaha)

The Recipe: Deadblondies

See what I mean? Dead blonde…

Nothing says 80’s slasher flick than a bunch of dead blondes strewn around. I’ve deviated from the traditional blondie recipe to make more sinful and sensuous bars because aren’t the bad girls the ones that get hacked up first? The answer is yes, and these treats were the first to go…

Deadblondies

(Makes 24 naughty little treats)

Ingredients:

2 cups flour

2 cups brown sugar

½ tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

2 sticks (1cup) melted butter

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla

1 cup chocolate English toffee baking bits (Heath brand sells these, but if you have trouble finding them simply add ½ cup regular toffee bits and ½ cup mini chocolate chips)

13×9” baking pan

How to Make Em:

Obligatory Reminder: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.

1. Prep your baking pan with non stick spray or veggie shortening.

2. In a large bowl, stir together the hot melted butter with the brown sugar. Cool slightly.

3. Add the eggs and vanilla.

4. In a small bowl, mix together the boring white stuff: flour, salt, and baking powder.

5. Add the boring white stuff to the butter mix. Fold in the baking chips.

6. Spread evenly in the pan and bake for 30 minutes at 375 degrees.

*Cool and enjoy!

Deadblondies are dangerous close to the Severed Limb pizza.

The Recipe: Pizza Crescent Rolls

You can’t have a slumber party without something to do with pizza, but frozen pizza rolls from a bag are too unoriginal for a Deadgirl shindig. This simple variation is super easy and versatile as you can add whatever pizza toppings you’d like. I stuck with budget-friendly basics.

Pizza Crescent Rolls

(Makes 16 slumber party yummies)

Ingredients:

2 tubes of 8-count refrigerated crescent rolls

1 jar pizza sauce or 1 large can of tomato sauce

1 7ounce bag shredded mozzarella cheese

1 package pepperoni

1 small can diced black olives

1 small jar chopped mushrooms

Spices: garlic powder, onion powder, Italian seasoning (use these as desired to spice up your sauce)

2 cookie sheets, parchment paper

How to Make Em:

Obligatory Reminder: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees

1. Prep your pans by lining both cookie sheets with the parchment paper.

2. Add the pizza/tomato sauce to a small bowl. Add the spices to desired flavor. Set aside.

3. Crack open each tube, tear each piece of dough at the perforation, and unroll each crescent flat.

4. With a regular eating spoon, smear a spoonful of sauce across the dough.

5. Add a pinch of cheese, 1-2 pepperoni slices, a pinch of olive, and one sliced mushroom.

6. Roll according to tube directions. I just start at the large end and roll my way to the small end, and it works fine for me, but many people are anal and want to follow explicit directions. I then say-consult your tube.

7. Pop in the oven and bake for 15-20 mins or until lightly browned at 350 degrees.

*These are best served warm unless your crowd is partial to cold pizza.

The Recipe: Apple Cinnamon Popcorn

More dead action courtesy of The Driller Killer!

A scary movie night without popcorn is like a serial killer without a body count-pointless. But nobody wants to eat your boring white buttered popcorn either. I chose an unusual fall flavored recipe that is just as appropriate in February as it is in October. Giving credit where credit is due: This recipe was stolen from the Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade: 20 Minute Meals Part 2 cookbook, but added to the section titled Awesome Movie Night Popcorn in my recipe box.

Apple Cinnamon Popcorn

(Serves a whole freaking bunch)

Ingredients:

2 bags of microwave popcorn, popped and cooled ( I have the best luck with Pop Secret Homestyle brand)

1 ½ cups dried apple slices, finely chopped (too gooey for the food processor. Just do it by hand.)

4 Tbsp butter (1/4 cup)

3 Tbsp water

¾ cup brown sugar

2 tsp cinnamon

Bowl, saucepan, wooden spoon

How to Make It:

1. Sift your popcorn for any leftover unpopped kernels. Breaking your teeth on popcorn kernels may seem appropriate during a horror movie, but believe me, your friends will not like you for it, and you won’t like the dentist bill.

2. Combine the popped corn and the apple bits in a large bowl. Set aside.

3. In a regular saucepan, melt the butter.

4. When the butter is completely melted, add the brown sugar, water, and cinnamon. Bring it to a full boil. Cook and stir for about a minute.

5. Oh so carefully pour the molten hot mixture over the popcorn in the bowl. Use a wooden spoon to gently toss the mixture until well smothered.

*Choose your favorite horror movie and enjoy!

Okay, so that does it for Part 1. Tune in next time, kiddies, for more Slumber Party Massacre commentary and recipes!

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The Creepy Masquerade Mingle Remembered: Spooky Whoopie Pies

To me, a theme party is just another form of artistic expression; an open window offering a glimpse into our creative and imaginative selves. It’s also an unlocked door, inviting others to step through and experience the ingenuity and generosity of all we bake, make, sew, paper craft, food craft, paint, create, and construct.
            I’ll admit I labor over every shallow detail. I want everything I set onto the table or onto a plate to coordinate somehow, some way with my chosen theme. I want cool props and accents that spark conversation and food that ends them. I try to choose innovative themes or at least add my own unique touches and personality to an already tried-out motif.
            This year, the corpse groom and I gained Halloween party inspiration from a rack of inexpensive and usually overlooked Victorian era masquerade masks. You know, the kind you might find the ghostly guests at The Overlook Hotel donning during a chilling New Year’s Eve Gala in The Gold Ballroom. I chose something a bit glitzy in gold and black while my groom went with an eerie Scaramouche mask and ebony cloak that was more Kubrick’s Eyes Wide Shut than The Shining.
            Party Stuff: I’m not too flashy. I like basic colors and shades that are easy to coordinate with things I have around my house. (Because I’m kind of cheap, too, and whatever I can’t make myself or buy for small coin, I alter from my stash). I chose a black, white, and silver color scheme. I bought a pack of black and white cardstock and a silver pen. I was able to create many invitations and food markers for a nominal price. Black and white paper ware was found in abundance at our local dollar haunt, and I coordinated with my own clear and white glass serving dishes.
            My prize decorating ideas: After a quick jaunt around my attic, I also seized the opportunity to incorporate the cool Silver set my corpse groom inherited from a deceased aunt years ago. I’ve been too lazy to actually polish it, but lucky me, it worked to my advantage as the grimy, unpolished look added that slightly gothic touch I was going for. Also, my silver painted pumpkins the corpse groom carved with his power tools received a lot of compliments. But my favorite idea was a silver tray serving poisoned candy apples (completely edible) and slimy rubberish worms. Tip for ya-food can and should always double as decoration.
            My most beloved part of setting up a party is always the food. Of course. This year’s menu was designed for an Open House. Guests were invited to a Creepy Masquerade Mingle snacks and sweets feast, and a feast it was! I wanted my six feature foods to follow the color scheme as much as possible so I chose three signature desserts-Chocolate Macabre cupcakes bejeweled in silver and translucent sugar and skeletal hands, an indulgent chocolate fondue bar featuring two dark dips, a ghostly white chocolate choice, and too many yummy things to dip. I also stacked a tray of spider-infested classic whoopie pies I whimsically labeled Spooky Pies. For savory snacks, I made a seven layer bean dip frosted with sour cream and sprinkled with chopped black olives; a batch of biscuit encrusted cocktail sausages, and roast beef & provolone tortilla wraps. I also added a sweet variety of black, silver, and white candies to the table and sidebar- like metallic-wrapped Hershey’s nuggets and Kisses, black licorice whips in opaque glasses, Junior Mints and white dotted chocolate nonpareils, and black dipped marshmallows rolled in silver sugar. By the time everyone had stopped in with their snacks/sweets offering, every nook and cranny of the dining room was filled with festive food.
            The Recipe: I’d never made a whoopie pie until recently. I know they are gaining tremendous trendy speed in the world of Oven and will probably outbake the cupcake in another year or two, but I had not tried them out until I came upon a totally adorable cookbook only for whoopie pies at Omaha’s Chocolate Festival this fall. It wanted to be mine so I brought It home to live with us. It is quickly becoming my favorite addition to my ridiculous cookbook collection. Also, the whoopie pies gave my stand mixer something to do other than just stand around. Haha! (I prefer to use my hand mixer most times).  All I can say is “move over, Cakester, you imposter! The Real Deal has FINALLY arrived to the Kitchen Macabre”. Cookie-like buns with a not-too-sweet pillowy filling that you can make any size you are craving, and so good it’s just downright spooky…
Spooky Classic Whoopie Pies
(Can make up to 48 2” spooksters)
1 pastry bag fitted with any round tip you choose/have (for the buns) OR a spoon for you pastry bag-less losers
1 pastry bag fitted with a decorative tip (for the filling) OR use the spoon again.
Stand mixer works best, but a hand mixer will do, too
1 2/3 c flour
2/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder
1 ½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
4 Tbsp butter (softened for the kill; unsalted for your baking pleasure)
4 Tbsp vegetable shortening (or what I refer to as good ole lard)
1 c brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 c milk
Prep: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. By the way, these babies bake best on the middle oven rack. Line a couple baking sheets with parchment paper for easy lifting. I prep four large sheets because I like to make my spooksters about 4” in size and rotate sheets one at a time through the oven.
In a medium bowl, get your flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt intimately acquainted. In the bowl of your stand mixer with the paddle attachment ready (or large mixing bowl with your hand mixer), paddle that butter, shortening, and brown sugar into fluffy and smooth submission (3 mins or so). Add the egg and the vanilla-beat some more (another two mins) until it plays nice with its ingredient friends.  At this point, begin adding the flour mix and the milk in alteration on low speed until just incorporated. Remember to scrape down the sides of the bowl because you don’t want to leave anyone out of the beating. Continue beating until the ingredients are completely combined.
Fill your pastry bag with batter or use a spoon to drop about a tablespoon size of batter onto the prepped baking sheets about 2” apart. (Mind this spacing detail unless you want Siamese whoopie pies). If you want them bigger, expect a lesser amount of pies and make the drops a bit bigger. Bake for about 9 mins or until the buns spring back after a soft poke. Allow to cool on the sheet for about 5 mins and then transfer them carefully to a wire rack for cooling. Make sure they are cooled completely before attempting to fill them or you will have filling that looks more like Elmer’s glue than Marshmallow Yumminess.
Marshmallow Yumminess Filling
(Makes an obnoxious amount of yumminess)
Stand mixer or your hand mixer will do the job fine, too
1 ¾ c marshmallow cream (I go for Marshmallow Fluff)
1 ¼ c vegetable shortening (that good ole lard again)
1 c powdered sugar (affectionately called confectioners’ sugar)
1 Tbsp vanilla
In the bowl of your stand mixer (paddle attachment, please) or a large mixing bowl for your hand mixer, paddle that marshmallow cream and shortening on low until you get its attention then increase your speed to the medium setting to beat it into a fluffy smooth submission (usually 3 mins is all it takes). Go back to a low setting to add the powdered sugar and vanilla, then give it another good beating until all is fluffy and well (another three minutes or so).
Fill your decorative tipped pastry bag with the yumminess, pipe it onto one bun and place another bun on top to make a kooky little spooky cookie-cake sandwich. Glop it on with a spoon if you have to, but I warn you-it won’t look as pretty. Oh well. It all ends up in the same place anyway, right? Enjoy!!!