Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Goblins, clowns, owls, and black cats

It's easy to find jillions of cute Halloween recipes today. There are usually a few holiday cook-booklets with ghosts on the covers by the checkout in every grocery store. There are Halloween Chips Ahoy and Yummy Mummy cereal, and Halloween Pop Tarts that will tell you how to make tart graveyards right on the back of the box. It was harder to find cute Halloween food in the '50s, especially with fewer packaged foods and special holiday editions.

That's not to say that there were no cute Halloween recipes, though. The 1959 Better Homes and Gardens Holiday Cook Book had a few after its directions for jack-o-lanterns.

I guess these are goblins to keep the idea family-friendly, but the black-and-white photo makes me think of them as skulls with their brains popping out:

They're very CUTE skulls with their brains popping out, though. And their maraschino cherry topknots make them quite jaunty!

I think the next treats are supposed to be cute as well, but anyone other than a '50s homemaker knows the correct reaction to a clown is to be creeped out rather than amused:

Their vacant stares and tiny, upturned mouths just prove my point. Creepy Halloween, everyone!

The last set of treats look quite grumpy, but too sweetly grumpy to be taken seriously:

I'm not sure why the owls are called "jolly," as the knitted eyebrows and bulging eyes suggest they at least WANT to look menacing. I just wish that the cookbook had a picture for the "Spooky Cats" variation too! I love that everything on the cats is edible except the colored toothpick whiskers. I can just imagine some child thinking the toothpicks are bits of hard candy-- and as revenge starting the "razor blade in the apple" legend that survives to this day.

Those cats are more than spooky.

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