Trick or treat delights

Tasty and healthy apple jaws are a great homemade trick or treat surprise.

Tasty and healthy apple jaws are a great homemade trick or treat surprise.

We have been counting down to this for the last few weeks here on this page, it’s that time of the year again, yes Halloween is Monday night, so this week I have a few more spooky recipes to share with you for the big day. Trick or treating is such a massive thing for the kids, collecting sweets and chocolates from local houses, so each year we have our homemade treats for the children, to vary the collection. Why don’t you try making them yourself and get into the Halloween spirit.

Scary monster jaws

These are easy and healthy Halloween goodies, apples and almonds are all you need, both delicious and impressive.

Method

Quarter apples and take a wedge out of the centre of each quarter. Dunk them in water with a little lemon juice to prevent browning. Use slivered almonds for teeth (I toasted mine for colour and taste ). Eyes are optional. I stick little sweets on with a bit of peanut butter. Jelly Tots are great for this.

Spooky spider cupcakes

These are basically decorated cupcakes. Use your own recipe if it works, but here is my easy one. Decorating them is a bit fiddly but worth the effort, I think.

Ingredients

200g butter (at room temperature )

200g golden caster sugar

200g self-raising flour

4 eggs

½ tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

6 tbsp. chocolate chips or chopped chocolate

To decorate

2 packs liquorice Catherine wheels

12 tbsp Nutella or other chocolate spread

Liquorice Allsorts (the black ones with the white centre )

Tube black writing icing

1 length red bootlace

Method

Heat oven to 180C and line a muffin tin with 12 cases, preferably brown ones. Put the butter, sugar and flour in a mixing bowl. Break the eggs into a smaller bowl, taking care not to get any shell into it, then tip on top of the butter mixture. Add the baking powder and vanilla to the larger bowl, then beat with an electric hand whisk until smooth and creamy.

Stir in the chocolate drops or chocolate. Spoon the cake mixture evenly into the cases and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden – a cocktail stick pushed into the middle of one of the cakes should come out clean. Cool on a wire rack.

To decorate the cakes, unravel the liquorice wheels and cut into lengths with scissors to make dangly legs. Stick 8 into the top of each cake, making small cuts with the tip of a sharp knife so they push in really securely. Spoon the chocolate spread on top and spread lightly within the liquorice legs to make a round spider’s body.

Now cut the Allsorts to make eyes and the red bootlaces to make mouths, then stick them onto the cakes and dot on the icing to make eyeballs. These will keep for up to two days in a cool place and are guaranteed to have your Halloween visitors impressed.

Spooky pumpkin faced cookies

These are another simple but great thing to make for trick or treaters calling to your door on Monday.

Ingredients

140g butter, softened

175g plain flour

50g icing sugar

Finely grated zest

1 medium orange

For the filling

100g mascarpone

1 tsp icing sugar

25g plain chocolate (55% cocoa solids is fine ), melted

For the glaze

50g icing sugar

About 1 tbsps of orange juice

Method

Preheat the oven 180C. Put the butter in a bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until smooth. Add the flour, icing sugar and orange zest and beat together to make a soft dough. Knead into a ball and wrap in cling film. Chill for 1 hour. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of about 3mm. Cut 24 circles with a 7.5 cm round plain cutter. Put them on a couple of baking sheets. Using a small sharp knife, cut out Halloween faces on 12 of the circles.

Gather up the spare biscuit dough and press into pumpkin stem shapes, trimming with a sharp knife. Press to the top of each biscuit with a knife to join. Make lines on the face biscuits with the back of a round bladed knife, to look like the markings on a pumpkin. Bake all the biscuits for about 15 minutes until pale golden. Leave to set for a while, then cool completely on a wire rack. Mix the glaze ingredients to make a smooth, runny icing, adding a bit more juice if needed, and then set aside.

For the filling, beat the mascarpone with the icing sugar, then stir in the cooled melted chocolate. Spread the filling over the cooled plain biscuits, then press the ‘face’ ones on top – do this just before you want to eat them, otherwise they go soft. Brush with the glaze, using a clean paint brush or pastry brush. That’s it, spooky pumpkin faced cookies, loved by all.

Another easy Halloween recipe is to pipe ghost shaped meringues, cook and decorate with a piped chocolate face.Whatever you decide to do, involve the kids to have more fun.

If you have any food questions that you need answered or would like a special recipe for something, feel free to contact me by e-mail [email protected] Next week, I’m going to share my Christmas cake recipe with you as it is always better to get it cooked in advance, talk to you then.

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