Quick look: The names of these recipes might make you want to recoil. But if you can get past the titles and images, they just might tempt you.
What’s inside: Of course, there really aren’t maggots in the Fresh Maggot Brownies, but the illustration leads you to believe there are. Same goes for the Toenail Macaroons, Clotted Blood Cakes and Fresh Pus Pie.
The 70 recipes in this cookbook carry decidedly unappetizing titles. But here’s food for thought – or at least something to sweeten the deal. Hoxton Street Monster Supplies raises money for the Ministry of Stories, started by writer Nick Hornby of “High Fidelity” and “About a Boy” fame. The program offers writing and mentoring programs for youths in the U.K. Buying “monster supplies,” such as this cookbook, raises money for the nonprofit.
Recipes are divided by types of treats: sweets and pastilles, biscuits and cookies, cakes and bakes, jams and preserves, Savory Snacks for Entertaining Monsters and Potions and Poisons. The chapters are sprinkled with advice and wisdom, such as How to Carve a Human, Cave Games and Golden Rules for Entertaining. For example, “If you have small humans, think carefully before inviting Under-the-Bed or In-the-Cupboard Monsters to your soiree.”
The cookbook is dedicated to Igor.
There’s plenty to satisfy your sweet fang. Look for Crunching Bone Toffee (popcorn drizzled with toffee and chocolate), Turkish Despair – get it? – with rosewater and strawberries, Gingerdead Men, Bump-in-the-Night Biscuits, Under-the-Bed Bars, Strawberry Shortdeads, Fee Fi Fo Fum Spread, Bursting Boil Biscuits, Mucus Tarts, Mashed Booger Tarts and Unicorn Pies.
Published at the end of September, just in time for Halloween, “The Monster’s Cookbook” is suitable for ghoulish entertaining needs – and reads. The text is terribly amusing.
What’s not: While illustrations accompany some of the recipes, there isn’t a single photo in this cookbook.
Mashed Booger Tarts
From “The Monster’s Cookbook”
1 sheet phyllo pastry, 19-by-9 inches, defrosted if frozen
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 ripe avocado
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 mild red chili, seeded and finely chopped, plus extra to garnish (optional)
1 scallion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro, plus extra to garnish (optional)
Salt and pepper
Unfold the pastry sheet, brush with butter, then cut into 32 small squares, each about 2 inches. Gently press 1 square into each of the 16 sections of 2-by-12-hole mini muffin pans, then add a second square of pastry to each at a right angle to the first for a petal-like effect.
Bake in a preheated oven at 387 degrees for 4 to 5 minutes until golden. Lift the phyllo cups out of the pans and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Halve and stone the avocado, then scoop the flesh out of the shell and mash with the lime juice or blitz in a food processor. Add the chili scallion and cilantro, season lightly with salt and pepper, and mix together.
Spoon the guacamole into the phyllo cups, garnish with extra chopped chili and cilantro, if desired. The avocado discolors, so serve within 1 hour of finishing.
Yield: 16 tarts
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