Halloween is fast approaching! As you plan your spooky celebrations, you may want to think about including a few ... monsters. They’re not all scary! In fact, most monsters are quite affable. Really, it’s time you started including your non-human friends in All Hallow’s Eve parties. These fiendish friends may include vampires, werewolves, pixies, fairies, and ghouls. Even the neighborhood banshee will want to celebrate!
Before you send out the invites, you need advice. After all, entertaining for humans is one thing. You put a cheese plate together, some drinks, decorations, and you’re done. Entertaining monsters is another matter. For tips on celebrating the Day of the Dead with the undead (and other monsters), we turned to Annabella Worthingham, author of The Monster's Cookbook: Everyday Recipes for the Living, Dead and Undead, which has recently been translated for humans. With entertaining tips as well as advice on everyday monster life, the book is a handy guide. It appears vampires are great conversationalists, werewolves have a voracious appetite during the full moon, and Twister is not a good game to play with zombies. Read on for advice on entertaining monsters, cocktail party etiquette, and the monster lifestyle!
Is it okay for monsters and humans to fraternize on All Hallow’s Eve? We know there’s a checkered history there.
A human/monster dinner party does have it’s potential dangers but luckily, it’s considered very rude among Monsters to eat a fellow dinner guest.
However, after a few Gallstone Martinis things can become more, er, challenging. Just stick with the golden rules of entertaining - such as never seating a Cyclops next to a giant spider and ensuring Dragons and Yetis sit at opposite ends of the table (for obvious reasons). This will give the best chance at a successful evening.
Say I were to host a pack of werewolves for a cocktail party. What should I serve?
We wouldn't generally invite Werewolves to a cocktail party, they’re more of ‘down some beer, out all hours’ type of group.
However, other monsters love a cocktail gathering. If Vampires are invited, make sure to prepare some Very Bloody Marys, minus the garlic of course. If Swamp dwellers RSVP, have some Unfiltered Swamp Cider on hand, ideally fermented from local swamps as they’re very ‘green footprint’ conscious. Yeti’s love a Snowball year round, so keeping Advocaat and maraschino cherries in the cupboard is a must.
5. What topics should I avoid when enjoying small talk with werewolves? With vampires? With zombies?
Werewolves aren't the best at small talk. Polite conversation can often be returned by a series snarls, barks and teeth gnashing. However, maneuver them on to fur care and you’ll be conversing for hours. Make them feel extra special by asking what conditioner they use, they always know the best brands for a beautifully glossy coat.
Zombies are naturally slow conversationalists. It’s very rude to rush them or finish their sentences. Give them time and space to speak and offer questions that only require monosyllabic replies.
Vampires on the other hand are charismatic raconteurs and enjoy all small talk, especially salacious gossip. Try to keep your conversation topic relevant to the last 100 years though, Vampire’s can be quite touchy if you suggest they are over 250 years old.
6. I'm hosting a werewolf and a vampire over for dinner. What should I prepare and how should I set the table to avoid any underworld-ish disputes?
Do be aware of your Werewolf friends’ lunar cycle. Inviting them over in their human form could be tempting for any vampire guests. If they are attending as human, politely request they wear a turtleneck sweater and keep a Very Bloody Mary in vampire guest hands at all times.
If your party does fall on the full moon, make sure to provide at least three times the usual amount of food. Werewolves have an insatiable appetite. Also keep plenty of napkins on hand for the drool and offer your Werewolf friends lots of opportunities to ‘go outside’ for relieving purposes.
Make the Bloodiest Mary:
7. A friend of mine (a friend) is dating a dragon. What's a good date night recipe?
As you know, from your friend, dating dragons can be a fiery affair. We suggest taking an evening stroll together and building a fire pit. Get your friend to lay out a blanket, while their dragon date gets the fire going. We then recommend rotating Small Intestine Skewers over the flames. These saucy meat treats will soon see things hot-up between you ... I mean them.
Do vampires have a sweet tooth? If so, what are their favorite sweets?
It is well known that vampires enjoy a little something sweet. They particularly like Blood Pastilles and Blood Sucker lollypops. Unfortunately, this wrecks havoc on their fangs; to avoid cavities, every respectable Vampire has a packet of Fang Floss in their cupboard.
Here at Martha Stewart, we take our pantry essentials very seriously. What are some monster pantry must-haves'?
“Meat is a basic essential for most monsters. Flesh eaters are very discerning and wouldn't dare to start a meal without consulting their ‘How to carve a human’ chart and ‘Seasonal Humans’ directory.
Humans can differ greatly in quality. For instance, orphans can be a little gamy being underfeed but very active. Office workers tend to be a tad fatty, due to years of sedentary behavior. A prize human is a free range one: these prime cuts usually live outside the city and work up some good flesh doing things like gardening, walking briskly, and wrangling small humans.
Most culinary discerning monsters will also have to hand a couple of dragon eggs, different blood types, and maggots (ideally organic and reared at home) on hand. If they're real ‘foodies’, staples can also include mashed fairies, toenails, and battery acid.
Of course, Swamp dwellers are one of the few vegetarian monsters and for them essentials consist of pondweed, foul smelling sludge, and swamp slugs (sustainably sourced of course).”
What is the etiquette to follow when entertaining monsters?
Carefully plan your cave games before the evening event. It’s very impolite to ask Zombies to play Twister for example. They may go home completely limbless and you’ll be left to clean-up the mess.
Always be aware of the guests you're mixing. If you have small humans, think carefully before inviting Under-the-Bed or In-the-Cupboard Monsters to your soiree. Although they very rarely mix business with pleasure, sometimes the urge to scare children witless in the name of light entertainment is too much to resist.
On a non-Halloween note: the cookbook really indulges whimsy and the fantastical. How do you think this relates to cooking and entertaining?
Any time you entertain, you’re using creativity and ideas to bring a great meal to life. At Hoxton Street Monster Supplies we love storytelling and food felt like a great fit to have fun with stories, tastes and imagination.
For additional monster recipes and advice, get your copy of The Monster's Cookbook: Everyday Recipes for the Living, Dead and Undead. Due to a rather inconvenient curse, all profits from the book go to the Ministry of Stories, a London-based creative writing and mentoring charity for young humans.