With Anglo-Celtic origins, Halloween was brought to the United States and Canada by Irish and Scottish immigrants in the 19th century. Even though this is not included in the traditions of the rest of Europe, nowadays it is hard not to get involved. Or even to avoid any kind of Halloween decoration.
Whether you like it or not, there are several ways to get into the spirit of the spookiest holiday. Decorating with ghosts, blood and spider webs is a good starting point. Or, in a softer way, you can consider Halloween as the best way to celebrate autumn by bringing nature into your house.
While the first option is mainly for children who love scary games and collecting treats house by house, the second one is an idea for the whole family and for all ages. The choice is up to you!
Halloween decoration in black
When the time of thinking about decoration for the Halloween party comes, it is the moment to involve children, who will be thrilled about it. Place black lanterns at the front door and along the windows, lighting them with LED candles as a safety measure. Hang black balloons or cover them with black tulle throughout the house, indoors and outdoors. Use a clothes rail to hang disguises or black dresses in the hallway. Also, if you want to add spider web decorations on the windows, why not apply them using black suction cup hooks? They are reusable and easy to remove, perhaps to hang in the kitchen or bathroom once the party is over. For decorations, choose spider and bat figures that are easy to cut out on thick black paper. As an alternative, opt for black and white ghost figures, which are less scary for the little ones. A chocolate cake will be the most popular choice for snacks. In order to remain in theme, cover it with white icing in the shape of a spider’s web. In accordance with the traditional custom, it is best to have a stockpile of sweets of any kind in the house. You can store them in black boxes or baskets. And since you wish to organise everything in the best possible way, if you are afraid of germs, you can install a gel dispenser near the entrance. Children will love using it!
Natural decoration for Halloween
More cheerful, cosy and less terrifying, we are now turning our attention to pumpkins and the colours that most closely resemble them. Whether you decide to carve them into lanterns or not, try piling pumpkins of any kind at the front door and on the windows. And no problem about food waste, you can cook them in the following weeks in many different ways. Soups, cakes and sweets of many kinds… they can be preserved very well. Continuing on the theme of decorating for the day of Halloween, abound with candles and lanterns to create the proper atmosphere. Cut out mini pumpkins or bats on orange paper or cardboard to place on window frames. Or, more simply, collect fallen leaves in autumn colours and stick them on the windows for an extra natural touch. Add large bunches of branches and autumn foliage inside pretty wicker baskets. And for a late afternoon snack, try our recipe for a carrot cake. Of a lovely orange colour, you can sprinkle it with walnut icing and pumpkin seeds: it will definitely be a hit! To remain on theme, serve it with a glass of good orange juice and get some orange or natural baskets for the treats.
My Halloween recipes
Trick-or-treating is great, but a good cake will satisfy all tastes and all ages! Choose your favourite version according to the Halloween decoration you have opted for.
Chocolate cake for 6 to 8 people
- 200 g dark chocolate for melting
- 4 eggs
- 100 g butter
- 100 g sugar
- 50 g flour
Preheat the oven to 200° (Th.6/7). Melt the chocolate together with the butter on a low heat. Add the sugar, eggs and flour and mix everything together. Pour the mixture into a buttered or oiled cake tin. Bake it for 10 minutes. The cake may not look cooked enough, but it is a normal procedure. Leave it to cool so that it turns into a soft consistency. Unmould it and use your imagination to decorate it.
The carrot cake for 8 to 10 people
- 450 g grated carrots
- 100 pecans or walnuts
- 280 g flour
- 240 g butter
- 300 g brown sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 sachet vanilla sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- One teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 180° (Th.6). Chop the walnuts finely. Pour the flour into a bowl and add the baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
Beat the butter together with the sugar in a bowl until it becomes creamy. Add the eggs one by one and beat the mixture for 2 minutes. Add the vanilla and carrots and mix again. Mix in the flour and spices three times and add the nuts. Pour into a buttered or oiled baking tin and bake for 30 minutes. Turn out and leave it to cool.
For the icing, beat 250 g Philadelphia-type cream cheese with 50 g powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla sugar. Then add gradually 60 g of butter chopped into small pieces and beat vigorously.
Spread the icing over the cake and set it aside in a cool place. Sprinkle it with nuts and seeds of your choice before serving.