For the past two years, I have been holding a pumpkin carving party prior to Halloween. It’s a great event for everyone to get together, eat, drink and show off their creative sides, AND you get to leave with your very own pumpkin. Here’s how I threw it together…
Chili bar with toppings: I recently went vegetarian, but am known for having delicious chili at my fall parties. I decided to trick everyone by using extra beans and Boca ground crumbles, and just not saying anything until people started saying it was really good. I put out cheese, sour cream, jalepenos and tortilla strips for toppers, and one of my guests brought an amazing pumpkin cornbread. As my friend Steve said upon arrival, “I NEED a beer and a bowl of chili.” After I pointed out the cornbread, he said, “Okay, I need another bowl of chili.”
Craig’s mom gave me this really cute three-burner mini-crock pot device, and it was perfect for putting out some hot snacks. I filled one side with spicy BBQ mini meatballs, and the other with a sweeter version. (Yes, I used turkey meatballs– sorry turkeys, but I didn’t eat any, so we’re still cool, right?) In the middle I put homemade macaroni and cheese. I made a big pan the night before and kept in the oven during the party so that I could easily refill the crocks.
I also made a spinach dip with pretzels and candy corn themed veggie trays.
Pumpkin fluff dip: 1 can pumpkin, 1 tub whipped cream, 1 package vanilla pudding mix, served with apples, vanilla wafers and graham crackers
Pumpkin and cider donuts
Apples slices with caramel
Hard cider: 1 gallon apple cider with a fifth of Smirnoff green apple vodka
Water, of course
I’ve been collecting scoops and carvers over the past few years of having this party, so I put out everything I had, tape and big knives. Max helped, as usual. To avoid a huge mess, I covered my tables with cheap tablecloths and kept several small grocery bags around to put the guts in. Usually I have a supply of templates and stencils because everyone depends on me to be creative. No, I’m not being egotistical, my friend Jared literally said, “Uh I just thought you’d get one for me.”
Joe even brought a drill, showing how seriously people take this event.
Aimee, Kate and Brittany got pretty maniacal when it came to using the drill. Maybe next year I’ll invest in a first aid kit.
Candles/silica gel packets: This year I discovered a cheap bulk supply of electric tea lights, but normally I send everyone home with a little candle, and some silica gel packets (that I stole out of shoe boxes over the past year) to help prevent future rotting.
Cuter owl and disco ball
Pumpkin Party !!!!
And of course…the pregnant Kim K pumpkin.