Desserts

How to put together a Halloween Candy Board

A spooky and fun take on just what you can put on a "cheese" board
Filed Under > "Hostess with the Mostest"
halloween candy board

There are a lot of food and entertaining trends I CAN’T get behind, boards for everything is not one of them.

Collecting your classic cheese and charcuterie boards in all different shapes and sizes has become as popular as collecting matchbooks or blue and white chinoiserie pieces. Not only do these boards look gorgeous placed around your kitchen, but they’re extremely practical. Practical yes for your classic cheese plate obviously, but if you’re not thinking outside of the cheese board it’s time to start. And what better way than loading one with all the Halloween treats your stomach can handle for a Halloween Candy Board.

Crafting a Halloween Candy Board is truly easier than it looks. Personally, I like to start from the center and work my way out. Mix up colors and types of treats like chocolate pumpkins, cupcakes (I just added eyeballs to store bought cupcakes), homemade mallows, and cookies. For those local, Pum’s Sweets made these gorgeous mini sugar cookies!

Always include a bowl, or rather three if you’re doing more than one as odds always work better in this case. My pumpkin bowl is filled with a classic Autumn Mixture of mine, recipe coming on Friday! And if you feel like making your own bark I highly suggest this easy bark of mine. I make it every year!

Aesthetically make sure you’re angling treats all different directions so it doesn’t look like your Halloween Candy Board is tilting or moving in one specific direction. And try to make everything flow together so you have very few spaces or gaps showing. Lastly, have fun and don’t take it too seriously.

One more thought. I love a good grazing board as much as the next person, but based on everything that’s going on grazing is a no-no. To help make your Halloween Candy Board more socially distanced friendly grab plenty of inexpensive tongs and make sure everyone has their own that way they can pile the treats on their plate and simply place the tongs in a “dirty” bucket once they’re done for the evening. And grab some Halloween themed goodie bags so guests can take a few goodies home with them.

Happy Halloween friends, and if you need any Halloween decor ideas make sure to check out my favorite Halloween-themed post HERE! Truly, MKR

Photography Rustic WHite Interiors

Homemade Caramel Corn with Pecans & Candy Corn

A perfectly addicting, seasonal sweet snack
Filed Under > Desserts

Homemade caramel corn with pecans and candy corn, the perfect recipe for fall, @waitingonmartha

I get very nostalgic when it comes to homemade caramel corn.  Memories of my dad whipping up a big batch as soon as the leaves started to change.  Melting it all low-and-slow, and then shake-shake-shaking the mixture in a big paper bag before spilling out the warm, sweet, crunchy goodness on the table for Mom and me to devour until we literally made ourselves sick. 

Being one of my favorite fall treats, I wanted to try my hand at making homemade caramel corn myself this year.  It seemed simple enough…traditional stovetop popcorn (which in my humble opinion is the only way to make popcorn) + pecans + candy corn + homemade caramel sauce.  And it really is simple as long as you have a few tricks up your sleeve.  Tricks I’ve finally perfected after a few trial and error test batches.

First, you’ll logically want to put the candy corn directly into the popcorn, pecan, and caramel sauce mixture before baking it all together in the oven.  Don’t.  Since candy corn is essentially all sugar what ends up happening is the candy corn pieces completely melt leaving you with patches of yellow and orange dotted throughout your mixture. Instead, you’ll want to sprinkle on the candy corn pieces right when you bring the mixture out of the oven when it’s still warm.  That way, they stick in the mixture but don’t melt.  

Second, line your oven with aluminum foil to catch any rogue drips of caramel sauce.  If you’re heavy-handed with the caramel sauce like me, then your sauce will likely bubble over during baking.  Trust me when I say, sticky caramel sauce on the bottom of your oven is a major pain to clean up. 

Lastly, when making the caramel sauce, constant stirring and timing really is everything, so make sure you read the recipe at least twice before beginning and DO NOT walk away from the sauce.  It can all go terribly wrong in less than 30 seconds, just trust me on this!  Happy fall y’all!  Truly, MKR

P.S. When the homemade caramel corn comes out of the oven, it’s my favorite time to indulge since it’s so warm, gooey, and not too hard, but try to show a little self-restraint and set some aside to package up for neighbors, teachers, and coworkers!  xo

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Homemade Caramel Corn with Pecans and Candy Corn
Serves 8
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. 5 QUARTS POPPED POP CORN COOLED (1 PREFER STOVETOP, BUT MICROWAVE WILL WORK AS WELL)
  2. 1 BAG OF CANDY CORN
  3. 2-3 CUPS OF PECAN HALVES
  4. 2 CUPS BROWN SUGAR
  5. 1 CUP LIGHT KARO CORN SYRUP
  6. 1 CUP ORGANIC BUTTER UN SALTED
  7. 1 TEASPOON SALT
  8. 1 TEASPOON BAKING SODA
  9. 1 TABLESPOON VANILLA
  10. NON-STICK COOKING SPRAY
  11. INSTRUCTIONS
Instructions
  1. PREHEAT OVEN TO 250 DEGREES.
  2. SPRAY LARGE SHALLOW TURKEY ROASTING PAN WITH COOKING SPRAY. ADD POPPED POPCORN AND PLACE IN PREHEATED 250 DEGREES F OVEN WHILE PREPARING CARAMEL.
  3. IN A LARGE HEAVY SAUCEPAN OR DUTCH OVEN MIX BROWN SUGAR, CORN SYRUP, BUTTER AND SALT. STIRRING CONSTANTLY, BRING TO A BOIL OVER MEDIUM HEAT.
  4. BOIL 5 MINUTES WITHOUT STIRRING. REMOVE FROM HEAT. STIR IN BAKING SODA AND VANILLA; MIX WELL.
  5. POUR SYRUP OVER WARM POPCORN, STIRRING TO COAT EVENLY.
  6. BAKE FOR 45 MINUTES, STIRRING OCCASIONALLY. DURING YOUR LAST STIR ADD PECANS.
  7. REMOVE FROM OVEN AND SPREAD ON PARCHMENT PAPER. SPRINKLE IN CANDY CORN AND MIX LIGHTLY.
  8. LET COOL THEN BREAK APART AND STORE IN TIGHTLY COVERED CONTAINER.
  9. NOTES
  10. CHECK POST ITSELF FOR PLENTY OF TIPS TO MAKE SURE YOUR BATCH TURNS OUT PERFECTLY.
  11. BY WAITING ON MARTHA
Welcome by Waiting on Martha http://waitingonmartha.com/

Photography, Rustic White for Waiting on Martha

Pumpkin Spice Drop Cookies & Apple Cinnamon Fritters

The Trip to the Pumpkin Patch with Sweet Treats and Thermos, A Rye Family Tradition
Filed Under > Desserts

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This should come to most of you as no surprise, but I’m one of those people that look forward to pumpkin picking on a Saturday (or any day) in September just as much as waking up on Christmas day.  Well, okay maybe it’s not quite like waking up to Christmas coffee and a glittering tree chalked full of presents, but it’s definitely up there. And over the past few years, we’ve really turned the hunt for the perfect pumpkins into a full day adventure.  With the windows down and songs from Hocus Pocus playing in my head, we pile into our car, loaded up with a thermos or two of warm coffee and apple cider, and our favorite snacks en route to the pumpkin patch. 

To us, it’s the perfect amount of time out of the house, away from the computer, and the best way to breathe in the crisp fall air that’s finally here.  And of course, it’s an excuse to wear my favorite fall uniform (think a great plaid shirt and the coziest sweater) and break out one or two of my vintage plaid blankets.  Because I mean, what’s better than rolling out your blanket with a thermos and sweets in-hand after you pick out this year’s pumpkins?  All the feels. 

Since this annual ritual is meant to be a fun, enjoyable day, it will never do to be stressed in the kitchen before the trek to the patch.  So I usually pick up a good mix of treats from a local doughnut shop (Revolution Doughnuts or Sublime Doughnuts are my favorites).  When I do have a little time on my hands, however, I whip up some super easy cinnamon sugar doughnuts or stick to two tried-and-true recipes that cannot be beaten: pumpkin spice drop cookies and apple cinnamon fritters.

The second you bite into these, cake-like cookies with their warm, spicy pumpkin flavor, you’ll see why they’ve been some of my favorites for years now.  I’ve found they’re the perfect big-batch recipe this time of year…they’re seriously so simple to make and are ALWAYS a hit with a crowd.  And I’m not sure how golden brown apple cinnamon fritters with a white icing glaze could ever disappoint; they’re lightly fried to perfection with light, pillow-soft centers.  I use THIS recipe because why try to improve on something that’s already pretty dang fantastic?!  

Tell me friends, have you made a trip to the pumpkin patch?  What fall treats are always on your list?  Truly, MKR

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Photography, Kathryn McCrary for Waiting on Martha

Outfit: plaid shirt | wool hat | jeans | thermos | blanket | socks 

Baking: copper cooling racks | copper measuring cups 

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