Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Halloween Half Term Family Fun

Family Days out this Half Term and Halloween.

This half term why not treat your family to some spooky fun? There will be child and family friendly activities held up and down the country to entertain your little terrors during the school break, look out for things happening near you, or consider the activities listed here.....

For a truly authentic Halloween fright, take the family to a real haunted castle. Warwick Castle has lots to offer for a big day out. There are dungeons to explore and both daytime and evening spooky goings on – depending on how brave you're feeling!

Alton Towers Theme Park is hosting Scarefest for Kids and will be open from 10am until late throughout the event. All the family's favourite rides will be open as usual and there will be stageshows, a halloween playland and mazes for younger children.

In York, join the Ghost Walk York tour, running every night of the holidays from October 26 to November 2nd. Starting at York's famous Roman Column at 7pm, the walk will take you back in time to experience York's murky past and to the site of some gruesome and unearthly events of days gone by.

If you're feeling particularly adventurous, what could be better than telling ghost stories around a campfire whilst toasting marshmallows. Many campsite options are available, or simply pitch up in your garden.
Breck Farm Caravan and Camping Park at Weybourne, Norfolk allows campfires (operate with care!)

Haunted York and camping fun

If you're planning on staying at home, spend some time in the kitchen and cook up some treats! If you're buying pumpkins for carving, you might like to try this simple pumpkin soup recipe, using;

  • 2 tbsp's olive oil
  • 2 onions finely chopped
  • 1kg pumpkin, de-seeded and chopped into chunks
  • 700ml vegetable or chicken stock
  • 142ml pot of double cream
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and gently cook the onions for 5 minutes until soft but not coloured. Add the pumpkin and continue to cook for 8-10 minutes until starting to soften and turn golden. Pour 700ml stock into the pan, season with salt and pepper, bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes, until the pumpkin is very soft. Pour in the cream and bring back to the boil and then puree with a hand blender. For an extra smooth consistency, push the soup through a fine sieve into another pan.

How to carve a pumpkin.

Pumpkin carving kits are readily available in supermarkets, usually displayed near or with the pumpkins, but if you have a small, sharp serrated knife you can easily do this at home.

  1. Choose a large pumpkin and use a serrated knife to cut off the crown.
  2. Using a serving spoon scoop out the seeds and fibres and discard. Then remove some of the flesh.
  3. Use a marker pen to draw the outline of a face, or the pattern you wish to create, onto the pumpkin. Using the small serrated knife, cut around the pattern ensuring you cut away from your hand incase the knife slips.
  4. Pop a tealight inside the pumpkin, light it and replace the crown.

Try your hand at creating some simple halloween fairy cakes. There are many cake decorating kits available to help you add the finishing touches to little sponge cakes, take a look at these for inspiration...

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