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Halloween Parties

The Martha Meade Society Program

Halloween Parties 

Oct 19 1933



CAST:

CHAIRWOMAN (3 lines)

MARTHA MEADE, unfailingly warm and cheerful

SINGERS (1 song)

and murmuring LADIES




MUSIC: THEME ... A BRISK INSTRUMENTAL VERSION OF THE 1917 SONG "SMILES" BY J. WILL CALLAHAN AND LEE S. ROBERTS


SOUND: LADIES MURMUR ... GAVEL BANGS ONCE ... LADIES GROW QUIET WITH--


CHAIRWOMAN: At today's meeting we are once more back home. On Thursday's program we shall resume our trip around the world. But Halloween is coming and Martha Meade knew that we could learn very little in the Orient about giving Halloween parties. That is what she has for us this morning: a Halloween party with a menu and a recipe for a very wholesome kind of doughnut. Martha Meade.


MARTHA: (CHUCKLES WARMLY) There are plenty of times when I do envy the youngsters of the coming generation, but Halloween isn't one of those times. In their own way, these children are thrilled by their Halloween dances, but when I remember the Halloweens of my childhood, I shake my head as sadly as any grandmother sitting in the chimney-corner. Remember how careful your family was to take in the porch furniture, the doormat, and the ashcan long before nightfall on Halloween? And father disconnected the doorbell-- (CHUCKLES) --while mother mourned because her newly washed windows were sure to be decorated with soap before the evening was over? About dusk started that delightful creepy feeling that things were prowling around. (CHUCKLES) Maybe they were only schoolboys. Maybe, on the other hand, they were ghosts. I remember one year when my big brother and his friends hung a porch rocker at the top of the church steeple. Nobody could ever figure out how they put it there because nobody could find out how to get it down. So there it swung in the wind month after month, reminding us all that there was one day in the year when no one took our pranks seriously. 


If I were planning a Halloween party for children now, I think I'd try to give them just a little sample of the sort of fun we used to have. Don't you suppose we could treat them somehow to a few lovely shivers? The children are so matter-of-fact all the rest of the time, it surely won't hurt them once a year to imagine they've seen a witch riding across the moon. If you get together five or six boys -- oh, the kind who'd be inclined to hang rocking chairs on steeples -- they'll help you plan the party and carry it out. 


To establish the feeling of spooks, the house can be almost dark at the beginning of the party. One lone candle in the background is all the guests will see when the door is opened. But a sheeted figure points the way upstairs, or down the hall. At the top of the stairs, another sheeted figure can whisper further directions. (CHUCKLES) If your guests are very young, you'll want of course to modify the weirdness a little, but children of, oh, perhaps eleven to fifteen will be thrilled by it. Of course, a Halloween party is far more of an affair if the guests come in costume, with a prize given for the best. The house may be decorated with bunches of corn stalks in the corners and with pumpkin cutouts over the lights. Orange, red, and blue bulbs will produce ghostly lighting effects, if you want to go to that expense. Autumn leaves may be strewn on the floor of the cellar, if some of the games are played down there, and guests should enter, of course, through either the rear door or the cellar door. When they've all arrived, the lights can go on and the games commence. 


A party of this sort is happiest when it spreads itself all through the house. In one room, one game can be kept in progress; in another room, another. To keep your guests in circulation and to be sure they're all thoroughly mixed, have little tally cards to be given to each one, showing where he's supposed to be at different times. Give each room a spooky name, so the tally card would read: "Eight o'clock at the haunted house," "Eight-thirty in the sleepy hollow." (CHUCKLES) Strike a gong every thirty minutes and have the names of the rooms marked on signs, so the children can easily find where they're supposed to go. 


In the haunted house, which may be the dining room, they might hunt for a penny in a bowl of flour. Ducking for apples had better be done in the kitchen or basement. In the double doors of the living room you might have several apples swinging. Start the children all trying to bite them at the same time -- and the one who takes the first bite is, of course, the one who wins. The old contest of tying a raisin in the center of a long piece of string and starting two children chewing the string toward the raisin from each end always causes excitement. And be sure to have plenty of prizes. Five-and-ten-cent ones are good enough. Other suitable games are the treasure hunt, with clues for each person and a fortune at the end, and the spider web, in which a prize for each child is found at the end of a long string wound in and out among the furniture. By following back the threads of your own memory, you'll recall other games that made the old-fashioned Halloween so jolly. 


At a Halloween party it's the custom to eat more or less continuously, but aside from all the nibbling, there should be a light sit-down supper. About all the refreshments necessary are doughnuts and candied apples, with cider, of course, to drink. If you'd like to know how to make those candied apples, just drop me a card and I'll send you the recipe. And I'm going to give you now a recipe for the doughnuts -- a new kind of doughnut. These are sour cream doughnuts, or you can use top milk. In either case, they have that peculiarly light, rich flavor that sour cream always gives to hot bread. We all know that the best waffles and pancakes are made with sour cream. Well, these doughnuts will have that same good flavor. 


The most unusual thing about them, though, is that the recipe calls for cooked Wheathearts -- another way to get the vitamin B of Wheathearts into your children. Now that the blend of Wheathearts has been changed, this good cereal contains even more -- twice more! -- of the wheat germ. It's this wheat germ which gives to Wheathearts its abundance of vitamin B, so that now, when you eat Wheathearts, you're giving your system a supply of one of the most important health elements. For this reason, you'll want to know as many ways as possible to include Wheathearts in your family's diet -- and these doughnuts are one of the very best ways. On the mornings when you don't serve Wheathearts in cereal form, have on the table a plate of warm, light, nourishing Wheathearts doughnuts. 


Did you know that one of the most important things to do in making doughnuts is to have the hot fat just the right temperature? If it's so hot it smokes, then your doughnuts will be less digestible. Another rule to remember is that the doughnut should be turned only once -- and don't prick them with a fork in turning. But some of these hints I'll give you with the recipe. Here it is: 


(PAUSE BETWEEN EACH LINE)

Three tablespoons shortening 


One cup sugar 


Four eggs 


One cup cooked Wheathearts 


Four and a half cups Drifted Snow "Home-Perfected" Flour 


Four teaspoons baking powder 


One teaspoon salt 


One teaspoon mace 


One-fourth teaspoon nutmeg 


One-half cup sour thin cream 


Or top milk 


And one-fourth teaspoon soda 


Now those quantities are sufficient for two dozen doughnuts. I'll repeat them for you.

(BRISKLY, WITH NO PAUSES)

Three tablespoons shortening 

One cup sugar 

Four eggs 

One cup cooked Wheathearts 

Four and a half cups Drifted Snow "Home-Perfected" Flour 

Four teaspoons baking powder 

One teaspoon salt 

One teaspoon mace 

One-fourth teaspoon nutmeg 

One-half cup sour thin cream 

Or top milk 

And one-fourth teaspoon soda 


(PAUSE BETWEEN EACH LINE)

Cream shortening-- 


--and add sugar gradually. 


Add well-beaten eggs. 


Stir in cooked Wheathearts. 


Sift flour and measure. 


Sift again with baking powder.


Salt and spice it-- 


--and add to first mixture-- 


--alternately with sour cream-- 


--to which soda has been added. 


As you experienced cooks know, the soda and cream mixture should be stirred until it bubbles before adding to the doughnut mixture. 


Roll out on well-floured board-- 


--or cloth to one-third inch thickness. 


Cut with doughnut cutter-- 


--and fry in deep fat, three hundred and seventy-five degrees-- 


--or when an inch cube of bread browns in sixty seconds. 


Cook doughnuts about three minutes--


--turning only once during cooking. 


That is, one and a half minutes on each side. 


Drain on unglazed paper and serve either plain or dusted with powdered sugar. (CHUCKLES) Don't you wish Halloween were already here and you were enjoying one of those good doughnuts -- so light and crisp and brown -- with a glass of sweet, cold cider? 


I talked today only about children's Halloween parties. (CHUCKLES) I know, though, plenty of grown-ups who would enjoy doing the same thing. Or if you want a little more sophisticated party, you might give a simple dinner and play cards afterwards. I have a menu for such a dinner, including lamb pies in pumpkin shells, a jack-o'-lantern salad, apple muffins, and pumpkin pie. And if you'd like a copy of the menu and the recipes that go with it, just let me know and by return mail I'll send them to you. I'm sure most of you remember my address: Martha Meade, care of the Sperry Flour Company, San Francisco. My recipe for pumpkin pie, by the way, was included on the recipe folder which you'll find in all the sacks of Drifted Snow "Home-Perfected" Four. 


I was extremely sorry the other day to hear someone say that she hadn't sent for one of the Chromium Tidbit Trays because she didn't see how any company could possibly give away a tray of a dollar-and-fifty-cent value for merely the tops of two Wheatheart boxes. (CHUCKLES) I admit she had a right to be surprised. It is an unusual offer, but it's made under very unusual circumstances. The trays actually cost the Sperry Flour Company much more than you pay for the two boxes of Wheathearts. But with such a wonderful product as this new, improved cereal, they can afford to offer you a very special inducement for trying it. Until you've tasted the new Wheathearts, you just can't imagine how delicious this cereal is. But when you have tasted it, we know you'll continue to eat it morning after morning. Entirely apart from its nourishing wealth of vitamin B, it's just so good that you'll add it permanently to your pantry shelf; we know, at least, that most of you will, because we tested the new Wheathearts with more than four hundred people before we put it on the market -- and more than eighty percent of these people were very enthusiastic about it. Knowing then that the popularity of Wheathearts was assured, the Sperry Flour Company decided that its only problem was to have you try Wheathearts yourself, and that's why they bought these handsome trays to offer you. The trays, made by a nationally famous jeweler, are chromium, and are made in that smart new style, with a six-inch handle coming up from the center of the tray. If you don't send for one before they're gone, you'll be forever sorry. 


It's very, very easy, though, for you to have a tray. Merely send to me the tops of two Wheatheart boxes and I'll ship you the tray postpaid. I don't want any money or stamps -- unless, that is, you should prefer to send just one box top and ten cents to cover the cost of shipping. Now, that's easy enough, isn't it? Just two box tops and no money, or one box top and ten cents. And my address again: Martha Meade, care of the Sperry Flour Company, San Francisco. Your grocer now has the new Wheathearts, so buy it today and treat your family to a delicious breakfast while you treat yourself to one of the chromium trays. Goodbye. 


CHAIRWOMAN: When we meet next time, Martha Meade will tell us about housekeeping in the romantic country of Arabia and give us the recipe for one of the Arabian sweetmeats. That will be next Thursday when the gavel calls us together at this same time.


SOUND: GAVEL BANGS ONCE


CHAIRWOMAN: Good morning.


SOUND: LADIES MURMUR ... THEN OUT WITH--


MUSIC: PIANO ACCOMPANIES SINGERS ... "SMILES"


SINGERS:

There are smiles that make us happy.

There are smiles that make us blue.


There are smiles that drive away the teardrops

As the sunbeams drive away the dew.


There are smiles that have a tender meaning

That the eyes of love alone can see.


But the smiles that fill my heart with gladness

Are the smiles that you give to me.


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