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On Halloween our house always seems to be the place where all the neighborhood kids (and some parents!) gather as home base during trick or treating.

Since I know that the kids will get their fill of the sweet stuff, I make sure and have some good, “real” food for everyone. (And of course I always have a big crock-pot of hot apple cider brewing!) Some years it’s as easy as ordering pizza, other years I cook – a big pot of chili, stew – something that will stick to your ribs. This year I will be making a big pan of fried rice and some store-bought frozen lumpia.

It’s nice to have something that will keep everybody warm and counteract the effects of all that sugar!

Another way to go is to just serve up a nice variety of savory spooky snacks. I made these fun appetizers for the Halloween party that we attended this last weekend and thought I would share with you, in case you were looking for a quick, easy idea to serve at your Halloween night gathering.

And they are on a stick! My favorite way to serve up some snacks to a crowd!

This is adapted from the recipe, Sausage Olive Poppers, in Kathy Casey’s cookbook, Sips & Apps. You can use a fresh or jarred red sauce from the store or make your own sauce for this recipe.

Skewered Bloody Eyeballs

  • 24 medium green olives stuffed with pimentos
  • 1/2 lb ground Italian sausage
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs (I use my homemade bread crumbs, but you can use store-bought plain or Italian breadcrumbs)
  • 1/4 cup grated fresh Romano (or Parmesan) cheese
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite red sauce or marinara (I used, fresh from the deli, a Wild Porcini Marinara I found at the specialty store)

Drain and dry olives.

Roll about 1/2 tablespoon sausage with a pinch of cheese for each “eyeball”.

Place an olive – pimento side out – in the center of each meat ball and shape sausage mixture around the olive, being sure to leave the center of the olive with the pimento exposed.

Carefully roll the eyeball in the breadcrumbs so as to only cover the sausage.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Spray baking pan with non-stick spray. Place each sausage covered olive on the pan and skewer with a toothpick.

Bake for 10-12 minutes.Pull the baking tray out of the oven and let cool a bit.

Cover the bottom of a serving dish with your favorite red sauce or marinara and then place the eyeballs in the bloodbath so that they all face out and are looking at you!

What is your favorite non-sweet dish to serve on Halloween?