My Ciao Gusto Halloween recipe challenge…

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**Please note: This post was sponsored by Ciao Gusto. However, I had full creative control over the recipe that I created, and chose products that I would normally purchase anyway**

 

There are loads of different Halloween recipe ideas online, with some that I’ve seen being truly gruesome. I mean, a fake skeleton filled with meat-based dishes designed to look like internal organs definitely fits the Halloween theme, but I’m not sure whether I could bring myself to eat it!

As the mother of a three-year-old who’s only this year started taking a real interest in Halloween, I somehow don’t think Halloween recipe ideas like that would work…I want to make food and Halloween fun for him, after all, rather than giving him nightmares!

So, when Ciao Gusto – the Italian Deli brand you’ll find online at Ocado – got in touch, challenging me to create a Halloween recipe using some of their products, the key for me was to make something family-friendly that fitted the theme.

Who are Ciao Gusto? Well, as they themselves say:

Picking up all your favourite authentic Italian food and drink has never been easier with the Ciao Gusto Italian Deli at Ocado.

For the first time, a simple tab brings together over 30 of Italy’s most popular brands, so you can find exactly what you’re looking for – and discover new and exciting ingredients – in just one click.

You’ll be familiar with many products, such as Riso Gallo, Filippo Berio, Giovanni Rana and Cirio who are joined by products less well known in the UK such as Valsoia dairy-free ice cream, Auricchio cheeses and Negroni charcuterie – everything you’ll find at the Ciao Gusto Italian Deli has been specially selected for its reputation as an authentic Italian favourite.

The full list of brands you’ll find at the Ciao Gusto Italian Deli is as follows:

Pasta – Barilla, Rana
Rice – Riso Gallo
Flours – Polenta Valsugana
Tomato and Vegetable Conserves – Cirio
Cheese and Dairy – Auricchio, Parmareggio
Fish – Delicius, Medusa
Herbs and Spices – Cannamela
Tuna – Rio Mare
Cured Meats – Negroni
Soya and Rice products – Valsoia
Olive Oil – Filippo Berio
Vinegar – Ponti
Bakery – Colussi, Misura,
Dried fruits – Noberasco
Jams – Santa Rosa
Coffee – Lavazza
Herbal Teas – Bonomelli
Water and Fruit Juices – San Benedetto, Santal
Wine – Zonin, Santa Margherita
Spirits – Vecchia Romagna
Cherries and Syrups – Fabbri

 

For me, the Noberasco dried fruits were the products that stood out. While dried fruit is quite sugar-heavy, these sugars are natural, plus 30g of dried fruit equates to one of your five-a-day. It’s why it’s a sweet treat I’ll happily choose for my son over chocolate, biscuits and other items – and luckily he enjoys various types of dried fruit too!

I chose the Noberasco Organic Soft Pitted Prunes (currently £2.48 down from £3.10 for 200g), Organic Soft Dried Figs (£3.10 for 200g) and Organic Fruitbars (£1.75 per 30g bar, with two varieties currently on offer at £1.40) to make up part of the Halloween grazing platter I’d decided to create. I love the fact that the dried fruits have resealable packaging to keep them fresh, too!

 

Ciao Gusto Noberasco Ocado Halloween Challenge - Noberasco Products

 

The fruit bars I used to create mummies, using strips of white icing as well as edible eyes (also bought through Ocado). The three-year-old was amazed by these, and I’ve had to replicate them for him multiple times since!

 

Ciao Gusto Noberasco Ocado Halloween Challenge - Fruit Bar Mummies

 

The prunes, meanwhile, got turned into spiders, while I used the soft dried figs as the basis for eyeballs, topping them with more icing to get the right effect.

 

Ciao Gusto Noberasco Ocado Halloween Challenge - Prune Spiders and Fig Eyeballs

 

The final few elements were satsumas that I peeled and turned into pumpkins with cucumber skin stalks; banana loaf that I sliced and cut into bat shapes with a cutter, and a ramekin filled with clementine curd, a pancake gravestone and a raisin face for dipping.

 

Ciao Gusto Noberasco Ocado Halloween Challenge - Banana Cake Bats

Ciao Gusto Noberasco Ocado Halloween Challenge - Clementine Curd Gravestone

 

I then arranged everything on a board, with mini marshmallows scattered throughout, and this was the final result…

 

Ciao Gusto Noberasco Ocado Halloween Challenge - Sweet Halloween Grazing Platter

 

I was pretty happy with how it looked! My aim was to create a Halloween sweet grazing platter that wasn’t just pure sugar and included some healthier elements – and the Noberasco products certainly helped me to do that. We’ll definitely be stocking up on more of the Fruitbars, as they were a huge hit, and those bags of dried prunes and figs are keeping us going! I also bought a bag of their Soft Pitted Apricots, which have been great for snacks, as well as in savoury stews and tagines.

What spooky treats would you make with these Noberasco products?

 

 

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