Halloween Candy Secrets Revealed

Halloween Candy Secrets Revealed

I love Halloween candy. I claim to buy it for the trick-or-treaters, but the truth is that my sweet tooth goes wild at the prospect of mass-produced candy in small packages.

When Halloween ends and there are still bags or bars of candy in the bowl near our front door, I have to look deep into my soul to decide their fate. Should I squirrel those precious candies away for future clandestine snacks or to get them out of the house as soon as possible, so I won’t eat them?

As a missionary for food label-reading, it seemed only right that I should investigate what’s in the candy I crave – and give out to the youngsters at my door on Halloween. And so I did.

5 Halloween Candy Secrets

Everything I cite below comes from the “nutrition facts” and the ingredients listed on the packages of "fun-size" servings of these candies:

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Pumpkin Black-and-White Cookies

Pumpkin Black-and-White Cookies

 

As Halloween approached, I agonized over whether to join in. Not to be a grouch or anything, but it’s not my favorite holiday. Yet, failing to acknowledge it seemed downright un-American.

My past Halloween posts have been a bit, shall we say, “serious” - healthy snacks (roasted pumpkin seeds and pumpkin butter) and tips on how to avoid – or get over – a hangover from too much adult-type celebrating. This year I decided to edge closer to the sugary side of the holiday, with a pumpkin version of black-and-white cookies, a sweet that is near and dear to my heart. 

I even like these plain – a light pumpkin-infused snack that goes well with a milk, tea, or coffee. Of course, without icing they aren’t black-and-whites. But if that’s the way you roll, who am I to criticize?

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Cosi Signature Salad (Copycat)

Cosi Signature Salad (Copycat)

Sometimes, great taste is about combinations not fancy techniques. When the combinations are memorable, flavors blend but also contrast, work together and yet remain distinguishable.

My friend Jill introduced me to what she called her “Cosi salad.” I love it because of the combination of dried and fresh fruit, soft lettuce and crunchy nuts, and the savory-sweet contrast of fruit and blue cheese. She named it after the Cosi Signature Salad, which she tasted and loved. I don’t think I’ve ever tasted the Cosi salad, but I definitely did a take-off on Jill’s version. So if she copied Cosi’s salad and I adapted hers, you can decide what that makes mine – I call it delicious.

The recipe below provides specific ingredients and measurements so that you can understand how the salad gets “built.” However, creativity and using ingredients on hand are the order of the day in making this salad. In my book, some type of blue cheese is essential because of the tart "bite" it provides, especially when mixed with the oil and vinegar, but my husband prefers it without; in the fall I use grapes but in summer, I’ve been known to switch them out for strawberries.

Cosi Signature Salad (copycat)

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