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Kid-friendly recipes for Halloween [Google+ Hangout]

October 26, 2012|By Noelle Carter | This post has been corrected, as indicated below.

Caramel apples! Tomato soup with ghost toasts! Spooky cupcakes... and more! Dim the lights and cue the spooky music while you -- and your little ghosts and goblins -- whip up festive treats just in time for Halloween!

RECIPES: Click here for 13 kid-friendly ideas for Halloween!

We've compiled an unlucky 13 recipes for your frightful pleasure, both sweet and savory! Get creative with pumpkin-shaped quesadillas, bake up a Dia de los Muertos-style cake, or conjure up a rich spiced hot chocolate to warm everyone up after trick-or-treating. Continue reading below for our recipe for tomato soup with ghost toasts, and check out our recipe gallery for more ideas!

LIVE VIDEO DISCUSSION: Join us Monday at 2:30 p.m.

The Times is hosting a live video chat at 2:30 p.m. PDT Monday as we talk kid-friendly Halloween recipe ideas with Test Kitchen manager Noelle Carter. We invite you to join in on the conversation by posting your ideas, comments and questions below.

[For the record, 12:24 p.m. Oct. 26: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated the chat would be Friday. The live video chat will be on Monday, Oct. 29, at 2:30 p.m. PDT.]


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Tomato soup with ghost toasts

Total time: 50 minutes

Servings: 4

Note: Use bread slices large enough to give you 8 (2-inch) croutons.

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, diced small

2 carrots, diced small

2 stalks celery, diced small

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes

3 cups chicken stock

2 slices white bread

3 ounces white cheese, such as Gruyere, Cheddar, Jack or Swiss, cut in 4 slices

12 whole peppercorns, optional

1/2 cup whipping cream

Salt, pepper

1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrots and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and chicken stock. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer until the vegetables are tender, 15 minutes. Stir occasionally.

2. Meanwhile, using a cookie cutter or scissors, cut the bread slices into ghost shapes. Cut the cheese slices into the same shape. Toast the ghosts in a toaster oven. Place them on an oven-safe tray, then place the cheese on top. Use 3 peppercorns to make eyes and a mouth for each ghost. Put them back into the toaster oven and toast again to melt the cheese. (If you don't have a toaster oven, you can broil the cheese toasts about 4 inches beneath the broiler element until the cheese is bubbly, 2 minutes.)

3. Puree the soup in a blender in two batches. Return it to the pot. Add the cream and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Heat, then serve in bowls with the ghost toasts on top.

Each serving: 364 calories; 1,198 mg sodium; 44 mg cholesterol; 21 grams fat; 9 grams saturated fat; 32 grams carbohydrates; 15 grams protein; 4.35 grams fiber.

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