Archive for October 2016

The Wild and Not-So-Wicked Halloween Candies of the 1920s

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The 20s were a wild time – women got to vote in the first year of the decade and lost their wealth by the last. In-between we saw flappers, prohibition, and American expatriates resettling in Paris where they reported in on everything from the arts to the art of love-making. As for the Halloweens? Revelers still ate the nuts and fruits dating back to ancient rituals, but the 20’s also introduced riotous new candies, the more orange and black the better. On the list were molded chocolates, shaped like cats, jack o’ lanterns and other Halloween emblems; jelly beans, plain…

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Where Have All the Halloween Marshmallows Gone?

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Today, when you look at kids’ Halloween Bags you see individual serving size bags of, say, M&Ms, and little bricks of candy bars, but nary a marshmallow. Aside from Peeps’ Halloween selections, in fact, marshmallows have been cast aside in the one national event focused primarily on candy. This is strange given that marshmallows played a large part of Halloweens in days past. So where have they gone? Or, more precisely, why? I think I know. It all starts with the Halloweens that were celebrated in the late 1800s through the early 1900s, with parties, containing bowls of candy, finger…

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Halloween Candy, Victorian Style: A Different Kind of Sweet

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Halloween candy entered the American food scene in the late 1800s, the hey-day of themed parties and flirtations with decadence. The candy appeared in more of a drizzle than a rush, with nary a sign of the M&M, candy bars, candy corn or the other sugary-sweet classics that would follow. In fact, those early Halloween foods were more-or-less of a bridge between the modern treats and the ancient foods, when today’s Halloween was a harvest ritual and observance of the departed, prompted by the wintry specter of death. Typical turn-of-century fare included nuts, chestnuts, peanuts, and walnuts, reminiscent of the…

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