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3rd box

Come October 31, dripping blood and spooning up eyeballs will top the Halloween trend in Pakistan. It can be as spooky as you – or your friends – can take without running screaming from the room although, come to think of it, that just may be the icing on the cake!

Sipping blood is not quite as horrific as it sounds; indulge in healthy, luscious, blood-red, freshly squeezed pomegranate juice, but call it something Halloween specific – ‘witches’ brew’ or ‘wizard’s’ blood’ should do the trick. Serve it up with swizzle sticks topped with stars, moons, cats or anything spooky that, preferably, glows in the dark.

As for eyeballs, a huge black pot to double up as a witch’s cauldron can be filled with a mouth-numbing, hot and spicy soup or stew with, hidden away deep amongst the other ingredients, just a single sheep’s eyeball; these are considered delicacies in some parts of the world. Ladle out the soup and eyeball – you do not necessarily have to eat it – to the lucky ‘winner’, and be ready for the roof-lifting screams, which are bound to erupt all around.

For those of you with a less squeamish frame of mind – slice hard boiled eggs, top each half with a black olive, arrange olive slices in the shape of legs – four on either side – and raise some eyebrows with platters of spiders on eggs which will, once the initial shock subsides, be thoroughly enjoyed.

For those regular Halloween treats such as sweets, pumpkin pies and hollowed-out, candle-filled, pumpkin lanterns, add witchy face paintings to the bag of tricks. Remember, you do not have to splurge on expensive, toxic-free body paints since boiled down beetroot juice is the perfect, bloody answer; it can be painted over faces – in ghoulish patterns – and even used to create the appearance of fingers dripping in gruesome Halloween yuck!

Happy Halloween!

– B Khan

First published in the Adbuzzzz Section of The DAWN National Weekend Advertiser on October 26, 2014.