Hocus Pocus Cookbook: Book Review

It’s Halloween season, and for many of us of a certain age, there is one movie that captures the very essence of this season better than any other; the modern classic Hocus Pocus. And what do we love more than a good movie binge? Why, a cookbook that goes along with the movie to create your own full immersive experience at home!

Enter “The Unofficial Hocus Pocus Cookbook”. This cookbook is authored by Bridget Thoreson, whose other works include “XOXO: A Cocktail Book”; and consulting for “Are You My Wine?” and is clearly written by someone with a deep love for the film.

I would like to thank Pacific & Court, Bridget Thoreson, and Ulysses Press for sending me a copy of this cookbook for review.

The recipes in this book are loosely organized and seem to focus more on the macabre naming of the recipe as opposed to what the recipe is actually for. The first three sections are thematic in nature; fall favorites, “townspeople” curated food, and “macabre” named items (which were my favorites). The last three sections are for alcoholic beverages, nonalcoholic beverages, and miscellaneous items that you might need to go with previously mentioned dishes. It’s great if you’re planning a menu, but gets confusing if you’re looking for something for dinner.

You can’t really review a cookbook without doing some actual cooking; so that is what I did. I picked four recipes from the various sections to test. All were super quick and easy to put together. They were also easy to modify based on what was available at the store.

@fabkiwi06

Cooking my way through the Hocus Pocus Cookbook! Review on glitterandprofanity.com #cookbooktiktok #hocuspocus #hocuspocuschallenge #nashvilleblogger

♬ original sound – Kieran ‘Kiwi’ Bailey

First up, we had the Bones of 100 Chickens, which is a take on wings. I made it using the pre-cooked wings from Publix because I was tired. These got rave reviews from both my partner and myself; a great flavorful spicy as opposed to a heat spicy. Just make sure you check your spice blends for salt before you add more to the mix.

Next, I made a big batch of the Cinnamon Pecan Syrup. I’m a Yooper living in the South… I love my maple and I love my pecans. This was delicious as is. Wonderful on pancakes, waffles, and the lot. But as a coffee syrup? To die for.

Moving on to the weakest of the lot, A Spell For Flayed And Crispy Breast of Chicken. This tasted a lot better than it looked; my oven did not want to toast this bad boy up. I’d make it again, but probably pan-fry to get it to the golden perfection it deserves.

Lastly, I had to try breakfast and I made A Little Child… On Toast, which wins the best recipe name in my opinion. You can’t go wrong with a classic egg toast like this. Would probably also be delicious with some of the leftover wings from above after a night out.

The Unofficial Hocus Pocus Cookbook is a loving tribute to the world the Sanderson Sisters stepped into when they were awoken in modern-day Salem in the mid-90s. These recipes are a fun way to create a mini-immersive experience while you have the movie on a constant loop for Halloween or any time of year; It is always Hocus Pocus season, after all.

Final Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Book & Publishing Info:

The Unofficial Hocus Pocus Cookbook by Bridget Thoreson
Published Sept. 2021 by Ulysses Press
Author Website | Ulysses Press | Goodreads | Amazon

“Leftover” Candy Cake Mix Cookies

One of the best things about Halloween is the candy.

If y’all haven’t done the Box Cake Mix cookie, y’all are missing out. This recipe is a great one to tuck in your back pocket for any last minute baking emergencies or potluck panics. Next time you’re at the grocery store and you see cake mix on sale, grab a few to stash in the pantry. You’ll thank me later.

The real beauty of these kinds of cookies is that you can do pretty much anything to them and they’re delicious, but I think they really shine around the holidays. Especially when you’re looking at the bottom of the candy bucket and have the stuff you’re less than thrilled about left. For example, I have never looked at a Baby Ruth and thought, “I want to eat that.”

Now, for these cookies in particular I ended up going with my favorite Halloween candy combos; chocolate, caramel, and peanut butter. Think Kit-Kats, 100 Grand, Reese’s, Rollo, Butterfingers, and even the much maligned Babe Ruth. Give the candy a rough chop (I used the food processor) and toss it in the mix. How much candy? Measure with your heart. You can bake them naked or give them a roll in some seasonal sprinkles before tossing them in the oven.

A couple things that are worth investing in for your kitchen in general, but this recipe in particular, are a cookie scoop and a silpat. Things can get a little gooey.

I did not inherit my family’s genetic predisposition for proper cookie dough portioning and this scoop has made it easier to crank out pretty uniform cookies that wouldn’t get me a death glare from Paul Hollywood. Silpats, or silicone baking mats, are also PH approved. If you are baking anything gooey or cheesey or just don’t want to deal with stuff sticking to your pans, these are a must. Parchment paper also works if you’d rather, but it’s really not the same.

10-12 minutes later and you have your dish to bring to your awkward office Halloween lunch thing.

Leftover Candy Cake Mix Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 Box of Cake Mix
  • 1/2 Cup of Oil
  • 2 Eggs
  • Leftover Halloween Candy
  • Sprinkles

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Combine Cake Mix, Eggs, and Oil in bowl and mix well.
  3. Chop leftover Halloween Candy into bits and mix in to the dough.
  4. Scoop large tablespoons of dough and roll into balls
  5. Optional: Roll balls in sprinkles
  6. Place on lined cookie sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes

Have you tried these cookies? Leave a rating in the comments below!

Easy DIY Halloween Shadowbox Shaker

It’s Spooky Season, y’all! Time to embrace your inner glitter goth and get crafty!

Halloween is a celebration of so many things I love – the macabre, playing dress-up, sugar highs… a perfect mix of dark gothic aesthetic and bright shiny baubles. It’s a perfect playground for some crafty fun. And, as with any holiday, nothing gets me going like some arts & crafts DIY mess making.

I’ve seen holiday themed shadowboxes on Pinterest for years now, and have been meaning to make some. What I’ve discovered is that this is a near perfect craft.

  • Low on mess, high on visual impact
  • Easy to adjust to fit any occasion or holiday
  • Great way to use up some of your stash items
  • Can get most of these supplies on the cheap at dollar stores
  • Depending on the frames you use, can be done with younger ages
  • You can swap out the filler to fit your decor or tastes as they change – or if you want to use the beads for another project

3 items. 3 steps. It’s practically fool-proof. There’s no reason to not to give this one a try.

The Supplies:

This is a super easy DIY: you really only need 3 things.

Shadowbox Frame: This is a generic one I found on Amazon – I bought a bunch for a super secret Christmas project I’m cooking up. Realistically, any size/shape will do. Just know that the bigger the shadow box, the more beads you’re gonna need.

Vinyl Decal: I found some super cute SVG sets on Esty by Twingenuity Graphics, and used my Cricut Joy to cut one out. Alternatively, it’s pretty easy to design some snazzy text and clip art on Canva if you’re feeling inspired. If you don’t have a cutting machine of some sort, there are shops that sell pre-cut vinyl options.

If you don’t have access to vinyl or a cutter or just want another option, I suggest stickers. Shop your stash.

Beads: I don’t know how or why pony beads became a hot thing again, but I’m so here for it. The combo I ended up with is particularly beautiful. Roll that beautiful bead footage!

These are all from Amazon. You can find the pumpkins here, and the purple “berry” mix here. I also ended up dipping into my rainbow collection to bring in a little more orange and green to the party.

The Assembly:

Y’all. This is stupid easy to put together.

  1. Apply vinyl to clean glass (carefully!)
  2. Cover the back panel of the shadow box with some suitable background (I used black paint)
  3. Dump in beads until it’s as full as you want it (more is better imo)

The hardest part of the process was making this TikTok.

@fabkiwi06

DIY Halloween Shaker Shadowbox 🎃. Put those pony beads to use! Links to supplies used on my blog: glitterandprofanity.com #halloween #haloweencrafts #ponybeads #spookyseason

♬ Halloween Party – MaxMusicMax

The Finished Product:

I mean… I think it’s pretty damn cute. Even my boyfriend admitted it was “dope”. Plus, if I decide on a different color scheme for next halloween, it’s easy to open up the back and swap out the beads for different colors – or use a different filler all together.

What other DIY crafts do you want to see? Let me know in the comments below!