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Spud spooks: a ghostly smash?

To scare up some fun on Halloween, serve mashed potatoes in the form of ghosts. Kids can decorate their own ghosts with raisins or sliced black olives. Mashed Potato Ghosts can be made the day before, stored in the refrigerator and warmed right before serving.

MASHED POTATO GHOSTS

2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks (about 5 cups)

3/4 cup 1 percent milk, heated

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Optional Add-Ins:

1/2 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese

2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley or dill

Place potatoes in large pot and add enough water to cover potatoes. Cook 13 to 15 minutes, or until very tender. Drain potatoes in colander.

Return cooked potatoes to pot and stir over medium heat about 1 minute. Be careful not to scorch potatoes. Using a potato masher, mash in hot milk, butter, salt and pepper. Beat with wooden spoon until potatoes are smooth and creamy. Stir in any optional add-ins, if desired. Makes 5 servings.

To create ghosts: Create ghost shapes on waxed paper or aluminum foil. Cut out ghost shapes from the waxed paper or aluminum foil to create a stencil. Place potatoes on serving dishes or cookie sheets. It will take about 1/2 cup to 1 cup mashed potatoes for each ghost. Place the stencil on top of the mashed potatoes, cut ghost shape out of the potatoes, then lift away the stencil. Or use a rubber spatula to create your "free-form" ghosts. Use sliced olives to create circular shapes for the eyes and mouth. Raisins can also be used.