Every year my neighbour and I celebrate Halloween by having excellent drinks and lovely comfort food for dinner on the 31st October. It's such a fun time; decorations go up, and we dress up. The tradition of dressing in costume for Halloween has both European and Celtic roots. We have a good catching up time too. Halloween falls right in between autumn and winter, it's a time of magic, mystery, celebration and superstition.
It is thought that Halloween originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in), people would light open-air fires and wear costumes to fight off roaming ghosts. Pope Gregory III appointed November 1 as a time to honour all saints and martyrs. The holiday, All Saints’ Day, was incorporated some of the traditions of Samhain in the eighth century.
The evening before was known as All Hallows’ Eve and later changed to Halloween. Over time, Halloween developed into a non-religious, community-based event with child-friendly activities such as trick-or-treating. In some countries as the nights get colder and the days grow shorter people welcome the winter season with gatherings, costumes and sweet treats.
On Halloween eve, when it was believed that ghosts came back to the mortal world, people thought that they would encounter ghosts if they left their homes. To avoid being recognised by these ghosts, people would wear masks when they left their homes after dark so that the ghosts would mistake them for fellow spirits. To keep ghosts away from their houses, people would place bowls of food outside their homes to appease the ghosts and prevent them from attempting to enter.
But back to reality of 2016....Last month I was given a bottle of Captain Morgan's spiced rum to come up with a cocktail for Halloween. This is what we are going to be drinking for our Halloween gathering this year:
Sparkling thriller, a Halloween cocktail recipePrep Time: 5 minutes
Serves : 1
50ml Captain Morgan Spiced Gold Rum
25ml of hibiscus syrup
20ml fresh lime juice
1 - 2 drops of chilli spice drops, optional
Champagne to top up
Fresh small Chilli to decorate
1) chill a martini glass with ice
2) In a cocktail shaker mix the Rum, hibiscus and fresh lime with ice cubes and shake for a minute.
3) Discard the ice in the cocktail glass and strain the mixture into the chilled martini glass, add chilli drops (optional) and top with champagne.
4) Serve immediately
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Disclosure : I was sent a bottle of Captain Morgan Original Spiced Gold to make a Halloween cocktail. All options are my own.