According to research, half the UK population will spend money celebrating Halloween today.
That amounts to £419 million. Crazy or what?
It has now become one of the biggest festivals of the UK calendar, eclipsing Bonfire Night which given its history is astonishing
Not surprisingly, the food industry has also cottoned on that All Hallows Eve is now a big money spinner.
Visit any supermarket recently and you would see a weird and wonderful array of Halloween-inspired food. Asda, for example, have been selling a monster meltdown pizza which uses black BBQ ‘slime’ instead of tomatoes and ghost-shaped cheese. Not to be outdone, Morrison has upped the stakes (see what I did there?) and introduced a RIPizza which has a green ‘zombie’ base and a cheese infused with the world’s hottest chilli, the Carolina Reaper, which is 300 times hotter than the Jalapeño chilli and Tabasco sauce.
Asda is also selling ghost crumpets, Tesco has a cake which looks a zombie brain and Sainsbury’s are selling purple carrots branded as witches’ noses (yes, you heard me correctly).
We’re well past the stage now where Halloween was all about hollowing out a turnip (no wonder we reverted to pumpkins because that was back breaking work) and bobbing for apples, so if you can’t beat them, join them, hence this week’s recipe.
Savoury pumpkin cheesecake with crispy waffle and Korean chicken
For the cheesecake
200g pumpkin puree
200g mascarpone cheese
50ml single cream
Salt and pepper to taste
Mix all the ingredients above together to set up
For the Korean chicken
200g chicken inner fillets
45g guchochang (Korean chilli paste)
15g maize starch
Combine the ingredients above. In a deep pan or fryer heat the oil to 175C and deep fry for approx. 3 minutes and set aside.
For the waffles
100g ready-made waffles
Tempura batter to coat (ready to use)
Dip the waffles in the batter and fry for 2 minutes, again at 175C.
Place the waffles on the plate then scoop the pumpkin mix and add a piece of chicken. Repeat to form three layers. Drizzle with maple syrup and enjoy.