Fang-Tastic Recipes…Tales from Halloween…


Halloween-Pumpkins- witches-

I hope you enjoyed last Friday’s post on Halloween… The shops and online stores are now full of fancy costumes and decorations for Halloween it is a big business… I would love to go somewhere like Salem for Halloween where would you love to go???

Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts is famous for its witch trials of 1692… It is both a residential and tourist destination everything about Salem screams witches and witchcraft…Police cars are adorned with witch logos, a public elementary school is known as Witchcraft Heights, the Salem High School athletic teams are named the Witches, and Gallows Hill — originally believed to be the site of numerous public hangings — is currently used as a playing field for various sports.

Tourists know Salem as a mix of important historical sites and a vibrant downtown that has more than 60 restaurants, cafes, and coffee shops. In 2012, the Retailers Association of Massachusetts chose Salem for their inaugural “Best Shopping District” award.


I would not only want to go for the shopping but the history …Has anyone been to Salem? Does it have that sort of spooky atmosphere or is it just like a regular place?

Did you know?

London Town is known as the most haunted capital in the world?

Highgate Cemetery is one of the spookiest burial places and has featured in many films over the years…The Abominable Dr Phibes, From Beyond The Grave and Taste the Blood Of Dracula, it is also said that Fantastic Beasts was filmed there…

Tower of London with its resident ghosts of Anne Boleyn, The white lady and the poor Princes in the tower…

London Dungeons where you can experience the horror of the Demon Barber himself otherwise know as Sweeney Todd or the infamous Jack the Ripper…I took my boys there when they were little and neither of them would eat there as they said it was dirty it isn’t it is just very authentic and they were having none of it especially food…

Bethnal Green Tube Station used as a bomb shelter in the war and it often was overcrowded and many people died there. Staff say that when the station is closed they can hear running and screams…

Trick or treating was something as kids that we were not allowed to do or a penny for the guy our parents deemed it as being akin to begging…


But trick or treating, or ” guising” (from disguising) was a tradition which began in the Middle Ages, children and sometimes poor adults would dress up and go door to door during Halloween begging for food or money in exchange for songs or prayers which were mainly said for the dead. This tradition was called ” souling” and the children “soulers”

It wasn’t until the 1920s and 1930s that trick or treating had a revival with a lull during WW2 because of the sugar rations and now it is big business and very commercial.

In Britain however, Halloween was slow to take off and many householders turned off their lights and pretended to not be at home… and I am sure many still do that….lol

I still think that we lack behind other countries as regards Halloween…

Now for a recipe…

Thai Pumpkin Soup:

This lovely soup would look equally at home in your hollowed out Halloween pumpkin shell and add a bit of Thai spice to your table. If you have little pumpkins it would look beautiful served as individual portions.


  • 400 gm  pumpkin peeled and diced into 2 cm cubes
  • 1 tsp white peppercorn
  • 2 coriander roots
  • 2 stalks of lemongrass  very finely sliced
  • 3 small shallots diced
  • 1 tsp fermented shrimp paste…You will be able to purchase this from most Asian stores or online.
  • 300 ml of prawn stock….I always keep my prawn heads and bits in the freezer until I have enough to make some stock.
  • 700 ml coconut cream
  • 1 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 tbsp roasted chilli paste
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp coconut sugar
  • 16 prawns /shrimp, peeled and deveined or crab meat
  • A handful of fresh Thai basil leaves save some for garnish
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil to stir-fry

Let’s Cook!

Firstly pound the peppercorns and the coriander root into a smooth paste. Then in a large saucepan, over a medium heat stir-fry the peppercorn/coriander root paste, pumpkin, lemongrass, onions and shrimp paste, stirring all the time for about 3 minutes until all those lovely Thai flavours are released.

Reduce the heat to very low, cover the pan with a lid and cook very gently for about 20 minutes until pumpkin is soft, stirring occasionally.

Next, transfer the mixture to a food processor and blend with the shrimp stock until smooth. Pour back into a saucepan and add the coconut cream and bring to a slow gentle boil.

Add your seasonings, lime, fish sauce, sugar, chilli paste and stir to combine, add your prawns/ crabmeat and cook for 1-2 minutes…Now taste and adjust seasoning if required.

Remove from the heat and pour into serving bowl or bowls. Stir in the basil leaves and garnish with extra leaves.


The true Thai way is to also garnish with spring onions or garlic stems, some fried crispy garlic or chicken skin and it always looks so vibrant and you just want to dive in and drown in the lovely flavours.


I hope you have enjoyed reading this post on Halloween and if you have any Halloween recipes or tales then please share and I am happy to add to a future post and give you credit xxx


About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Carol is a contributor to the Phuket Island Writers Anthology:

Connect to Carol



Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a great weekend 🙂 xx





18 thoughts on “Fang-Tastic Recipes…Tales from Halloween…

  1. Pingback: Fang-Tastic Recipes…Tales from Halloween… — Retired? No one told me! – Kristalin Davis' Musings on the Human Condition

  2. Invisibly Me

    I kind of wish I’d gone trick or treating as a child, I feel I missed out on that one back when it felt more of a ‘done thing’ than it is today, perhaps. I remember going to to London Dungeon, but that was years ago… wouldn’t mind a revisit, and to check out the cemetery as I had no idea about it being such a hot film location!
    Great recipe share 🙂
    Caz xx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. tidalscribe

    I love writing short stories for Halloween; when it gets nearer the time I shall get them out for my blog. One inolved a very sharp knife and a very tough pumpkin, my favourite was about an obnoxious boy who didn’t believe the witch was real at the local library Halloween party… We buy lots of sweets for trick and treat, then eat the rest ourselves.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      Haha…that sounds like a plan…Halloween isn’t celebrated here so I just get to eat the sweets…lol… I look forward to reading your spooky stories 🙂 Enjoy your weekend 🙂


  4. Victoria Zigler (@VictoriaZigler)

    Yes, a lot of people turn off their lights and pretend not to be home over here in the UK. It makes me sad, because I love Halloween.

    I only got to go trick-or-treating a couple of times. My Mam didn’t mind, but my Dad considered it begging, so we got to go a few times when he could be persuaded, but other years didn’t because he wasn’t having it. A couple of times, to avoid the issue even coming up, my parents arranged a joint birthday party for me and my brother (his birthday is mid October, mine is mid November; he’s 13 months older than me) and aschduled it for Halloween with the excuse it was half way in between our birthdays, so a perfect date.

    I’ve carved both pumpkins and turnips as jack-o-lanterns. In fact, we took turnip lanterns with us one of the times we went trick-or-treating.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      It’s funny isn’t it how some parents saw it as begging we were never allowed to have a penny for the guy either we made one for our bonfire but were never allowed to sit on the street asking for a penny for the guy…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Victoria Zigler (@VictoriaZigler)

        We got to do penny for the guy one year. When Dad was working late. Mam let us (on the condition we didn’t tell him when he got home that we’d done it). She didn’t mind so long as we were having fun, and not causing too much trouble. Dad considered stuff like that begging, and said he wasn’t having his kids begging in the street. He let us go carol singing one year though. Apparently that was OK because at least we were giving something back by singing for the people.

        Liked by 1 person

    2. tidalscribe

      When my daughter was young she longed to go trick or treating with her friend and friend’s big brothers, the mother assured me she would be safe – she came back safely, but with a worryingly large amount of coins!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. CarolCooks2 Post author

        Yes, I am not convinced that it is an age old tradition which should still be honoured… Safety apart from anything else I have friends who just used to take their children to selected friends they knew and didn’t just knock on any door..which is better idea 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. koolkosherkitchen

    Dear Carol, as my son lives 5 minutes away from Salem, I’ve been enjoying it every year for the last 30 years, and I can tell you that it has steadily been turning commercial, but it still has that “witchy” feeling to it. It is also my favorite place to go antiquing and explore the seagoing history of the Northeast.
    Love your recipe – thank you for sharing!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      Hi Dolly, I think like everywhere commercialism creeps in but good to know it still has that witchy feeling…and thank you that soup is lovely and with crab it just adds that extra to the flavour 🙂 Salem sounds just the place to shop and explore although I probably will never get to find that out first hand although I would love to 🙂 Have a lovely weekend 🙂

      Liked by 1 person


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