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Happy Halloween

Food Safety Tips For Halloween

Trick-or-treating, costume parties, and apple bobbing are fun pastimes associated with Halloween. Unfortunately a lot can go wrong if the proper safety measures are not in place. To ensure your children are safe, follow these Halloween food safety tips via FDA.gov:

  • Snacking – Have your children eat a light meal or snack before they head out trick-or-treating. They should wait until they are home and you can inspect their treats before consuming them.
  • Safe Treats – Children should not accept, and especially not eat, anything that is not commercially wrapped. Inspect all candies for any signs of tampering, such as unusual appearance or discoloration, tiny pinholes, or tears in wrappers. Toss anything that looks suspicious.
  • Food Allergies – If your child has a food allergy, check the label to ensure the allergen is not present. Seek houses with teal pumpkins on display, as these denote that non-food treats are available. Any home-baked goods he or she may have received should not be consumed.
  • Choking Hazards – These include gum, peanuts, hard candies, and small toys. If you have very young children, be sure to sort through their bags and remove these choking hazards.

Bobbing For Apples
This classic game has the potential for spreading bacteria that can cause foodborne illness.

  • To reduce the number of bacteria that might be present on apples and other raw fruits and vegetables, thoroughly rinse them under cool running water. Consider using a produce brush to remove surface dirt as well.
  • New spin on apple bobbing from FightBAC.org: Cut out apple shapes from red construction paper and write an activity on each (ex. do 5 jumping jacks). Place a paper clip on each apple and put them in a large basket. Tie a magnet to a string and let the children take turns “bobbing” and doing the activity written on the apple. Treat the kids to fresh apples after you are done.

Party At Home

  • Unpasteurized juice or cider can contain harmful bacteria such as salmonella. Stay safe by always serving pasteurized products at your parties.
  • Resist the urge to taste raw cookie dough or cake batter that contains uncooked eggs.
  • Keep all perishable foods chilled until serving time – bacteria will creep up on you if you let food sit out too long. These include finger sandwiches, cheese platters, fruit or tossed salads, cold pasta dishes with meat, poultry or seafood, and cream pies or cakes with whipped-cream and cream-cheese frostings. Don’t leave perishable goodies out of the fridge for more than two hours (1 hour in temperatures above 90°F).

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Fuel up at the Brick Your Neighborhood Deli before you head out for your Halloween fun! We will have normal store hours for Halloween on Wednesday, October 31 (7:00am-4:00pm; breakfast served until 10:30am). You may also order our food for delivery via DoorDash or UberEATS.

The History Of Trick-Or-Treating

Halloween is fast approaching, which means it’s time for costumes, candy, and trick-or-treating. It’s likely that we have all been trick-or-treating at some point in our lives, whether we were the kids going door to door, or the adults passing out treats. But do you know where the tradition of trick-or-treating came from?

Halloween can be traced back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, which was celebrated on October 31. The Celts lived in what is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, some 2,000 years ago. They believed that on the night of October 31, the ghosts of the dead returned to Earth, so people would gather to light bonfires and offer sacrifices to honor the deceased. Some villagers would even dress like ghosts and demons and perform tricks in exchange for food or drinks. This practice was called mumming, and is thought to be a precursor to trick-or-treating.

In England in 1000 A.D., All Souls’ Day (November 2) celebrations involved an act called souling. Poor people would visit the homes of wealthier families and receive pastries called soul cakes in exchange for a promise of prayer for the souls of their deceased relatives. Later, children adopted this tradition and would go door to door asking for gifts like food or money. Souling is also believed to be an earlier form of trick-or-treating.

In Scotland and Ireland, they had guising. Young people would dress up in costume and visit different households to sing a song, recite a poem, or tell a joke. This was their way of performing a “trick” before they received treats, such as fruit, nuts or coins.

Yet another example is the British tradition of celebrating Guy Fawkes Night (or Bonfire Night). This night celebrates the prevention of the Gunpowder Plot, which was an attempt to blow up the parliament. Fawkes was one of the conspirators that was caught and executed on November 5, 1606. On that day, children wear masks, carry effigies, and beg for pennies.

The popularity of Halloween was spurred by the influx of new immigrants to the US in the mid 19th century. In the early 20th century, Irish and Scottish communities began souling and guising in the US. But it wasn’t until decades later that trick-or-treating became the standard practice for celebrating Halloween.

This Halloween, rather than tricking you, we’d like to treat you! Visit us on Saturday October 31, 2015 for some yummy sandwiches and we’ll treat you to a free Pistachio cookie! We’ll be open from 10:30am-4:30pm so you can fuel up before you go trick-or-treating. Visit our Promotions page to learn more about our Halloween special and our other promotions.

Don’t forget to connect with us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, LinkedIn, and Pinterest – we would love to see how you will be celebrating Halloween this year!