Halloween Story: Freaky Fruit Salad

Freaky Fruit Salad from bibberche.com

We don’t celebrate Halloween in Serbia, but I knew all about it as I screamed every time Mike Myers’ face hidden behind the hockey mask appeared on the screen in the movie theater in my home town. I arrived to the U.S. in August, and three months later I couldn’t wait to participate in my first trick-or-treating. It was an adventure, as it involved a trip to Chicago on an old VW bus, a detour to the “mushroom place” (no, I am not talking about a patch in the meadow where the wild mushrooms dwell), countless bottles of booze, and, to me, an unfamiliar concept of bar-hopping. In fact, I felt as if I were crashing a party, and spent most of the time with my mouth agape, trying to figure out what had happened to me and who was directing the movie that I was an extra in.

Halloween 1986 from bibberche.com

In the following years I attended some pretty tame and some not-that-tame Halloween parties, and when I had my first daughter, I was relieved to pass on the tradition to her and stay in the background, my role limited to concocting a creative costume and pushing the stroller. When my younger two were ready to go out and try their luck at trick-or-treating, I was full of energy and enthusiasm. But with time, I started dreading this time of year, knowing that I’ll have to spend too many hours discussing the costumes, both for school and for after-dark (as they could never be the same), gathering the necessary material, making the costumes, and buying the additional props.

I made Halloween treats and took them to school. I snapped some great photos of my pumpkins, nurses, Draculas, butterflies, ladybugs, and mummies at more than a dozen Halloween school parades, and prodded them up one more driveway when they were whining about being exhausted fifteen minutes after we started the yearly ritual of extorting candy from the neighbors.

Halloween 2005 from bibberche.com

While we pulled the Radio Flyer Red Wagon with two bundled-up girls crying in harmony, I longingly stared at the adults gathered around the fire pits, kicked back with a cocktail, a plastic cauldron full of candy next to the chair leg, spooky sounds coming from the porches, wishing that I could join them, rather than trying to convince my two ingrates to make a go of the last house on the block and collect more sweets that would sit on the kitchen counter for months.

My oldest dresses up every year and attends parties that I really don’t want to know about. She is creative and funny, and I cannot wait for her to post photos to her Facebook page. My teens require only a little bit of my help with their costumes and no help with trick-or-treating, and I am more than happy to send them off to join their shrieking friends. Some years I join my friends around the fire pit; I drink wine and pass out candy, grateful that I don’t have to be a Halloween Nazi ever again and pretty confident that all the Mounds bars the teens collect will be mine.

Freaky Fruit Salad from bibberche.com

Freaky Fruit Salad
Author: 
Recipe type: Side Dish
Cuisine: International
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1-6
 
Colorful, exotic, and tropical, these fruits are perfect for a Halloween party on your neighbor's lawn.
Ingredients
  • dragon fruit
  • cherimoya
  • prickly pear
  • mango
  • papaya
  • finger limes (optional)
  • lemon juice
Instructions
  1. Peel the fruit, discard the seeds, and cut in chunks.
  2. (Wear gloves when handling the prickly pear).
  3. Sprinkle with lemon juice.
  4. Stir carefully.
  5. Add the finger lime granules on top.

 

Thanks, Melissa’s Produce for the colorful bounty!

Freaky Fruits from Melissa's from bibberche.com

Freaky Fruits from Melissa’s Produce

Robert Vs. Robert: The Judge

I’ve been in LA for six years and some pixie dust has inevitably landed on my shoulders; a few wrap parties, a screening of a short or a documentary, a celebrity sighting on the Main Street in Santa Monica… It is not unusual, as we all know some people who work in the industry. YesterdayContinue Reading

Corn Bread with Hatch Chiles

Every time I make corn bread I hear my father’s voice telling me how he did not taste any kind of flour bread until the 50s. When he was a youth growing up in post-WWII Yugoslavia, the times were hard, people impoverished, the country ravaged from the brutality of the war, and hunger was anContinue Reading

Moms’ Night Out: A Spoke & Weal Salon Event

A few people I consider my close friends know that I hardly spend any time at beauty salons. Not because I have anything against getting pampered, but because I always end up feeling buyers remorse. And that’s not fun. So, the last time I had a massage was when my youngest daughter bought me aContinue Reading

Figs Poached in Red Wine: Figology Fest Part Two

I remember the first time I tasted a fresh fig. I was four that summer, on vacation in Montenegro, with my younger sister and our parents. I remember the feel of hot pebbles and cool Adriatic caressing my chubby feet. I remember Father brought a paper cone filled with warm figs from the market andContinue Reading

No More Take-Out: Everyday Thai Cooking Is Here!

My father spent two weeks in Thailand a decade or so ago, as a participant of an international ObGyn conference. My sister and her husband explored several Thai resorts looking for the ultimate scuba-diving adventure. Many of my friends from Europe and the U.S. have been posting their photos from visiting Siam to their FacebookContinue Reading

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Peppers, But Were Afraid to Ask: Pepper Cookbook

The creative and knowledgeable people at Melissa’s Produce have managed to bring forth another beautifully photographed, informative, and immensely useful book: The Great Pepper Cookbook – The Ultimate Guide to Choosing and Cooking With Peppers. This one is very close to my heart as I cannot imagine my life as a Serb without the formidableContinue Reading

Una Sonrisa Menos: Chicken Tortilla Soup

Last Thursday morning, my friend Cipriano boarded a flight from Tijuana to Oaxaca  to reunite with his wife, children, and fourteen grandchildren that he had not seen in more than four years. A few days ago, a co-worker took him to a salon where he had his salt-and-pepper hair died a ridiculously artificial black toContinue Reading

Serbian Easter: Naturally Colored Eggs

Easter Eggs, Naturally Colored Easter Eggs, Eastern Orthodox Colored Eggs, Easter FoodContinue Reading

California Dreaming: Ojai Pixie Tangerine Cake with Caramel Sauce

I am standing at the kitchen sink washing dishes. A coffee maker is gurgling behind me, and to the right the onions and potatoes sizzle in the skillet on the stove. My 70s kitchen could have easily been duplicated from an Updike’s Rabbit novel, but all the smells that surround me scream comfort and warmth.Continue Reading