By M. Clare Haefner

Killeen Daily Herald

Forget the tricks, Halloween for me has always been about the treats – specifically the candy.

I remember competing with my siblings each Halloween to see who got the most candy.

We'd come home from an evening of trick-'o-treating, dump our goodies in piles on the living room floor, sort the candy by type and count up the total.

Years later, I don't remember how many times I won as much as I remember how much fun it was to run around the neighborhood with them and my dad collecting candy on a fall night.

And boy did we end up with tons of candy. We'd get enough to last until Christmas, maybe even until Valentine's Day – if we'd ever been allowed to keep it that long.

Some of our neighbors even made goodies, like candied apples, cookies and popcorn balls. Of course we were only allowed to accept homemade goodies from the neighbors we knew well. If it wasn't store wrapped, Mom and Dad had to know exactly where it came from, otherwise it went straight in the garbage can. So did any candy that looked like it had been tampered with, just to be safe.

These days I have fun passing out candy to my neighbors' children before heading to a costume party at my sister's house. Halloween is her favorite holiday, and I enjoy spending time at her house, which is decorated in orange, purple and black.

Halloween parties mean more goodies to share.

This year I think I'll bring what I've coined Monster Mix (it's really Chex mix with green and orange and brown M&Ms). You can enjoy it or the other recipes on today's Taste page at your party this year, too. Have a happy – and a safe – Halloween!

Monster Mix


9 cups Chex cereal (any combo of rice, corn or wheat)

1 cup mixed nuts

1 cup bite-size pretzels

1 cup bagel chips

1 cup M&Ms (green, orange and brown ones only)

6 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1½ teaspoons seasoned salt

¾ teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon onion powder


In large microwavable bowl, mix cereals, nuts, pretzels and bagel chips; set aside.

In a small microwavable bowl, microwave butter uncovered on High about 40 seconds or until melted. Stir in seasonings. Pour over cereal mixture; stir until evenly coated. Microwave uncovered on High 5 to 6 minutes, thoroughly stirring every 2 minutes. Spread on paper towels to cool.

Add M&Ms once mixture has cooled to keep chocolate from melting. Store in airtight container.

City Editor Clare Haefner enjoys cooking for family and friends. She can be reached at or (254) 501-7551.

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