The Great Cookie Experiment- Halloween Edition!
Black Cat Cookies
I LOVE Halloween! It is my favorite holiday, unless it’s December, then I might give Christmas a chance at the top of my favorite holiday list. I love the atmosphere- the cooler weather, the crunchy leaves, the spooky decorations. I love decorating the house, and believe me, I go all out when it comes to decorating the house for Halloween. I love the costumes. I have a big costume collection and try to dress up as often as I can before the month is out. I love telling ghost stories. I’m a professional storyteller, and I get jobs telling ghost stories all through the month. I also work as a tour guide for the Salt Lake City Ghost tours. My month is FILLED with spooky stories that give people the shivers. It’s a great time of year!
One of the most important parts of the season is the food. My family has a tradition that the whole week before Halloween, I cook “spooky food” for dinner. This means that through the week olives become eyes, barbeque sauce becomes blood, and egg drop soup is now Mummy Rag Soup. In search of great spooky recipes, I buy the little recipe books that are always in the checkout aisle of my grocery store. The October editions always have great Halloween recipes and I buy them all. I can’t help myself. It’s an illness, I tell you. I have quite a stack of recipe books now, and of course, there are many cookie recipes in that huge stack of little recipe books that I haven’t made!
That brings us to the Halloween edition of The Great Cookie Experiment! I’m putting aside my own recipe book where I’ve stored all the recipes I’ve clipped and saved, I’m going through those collected recipe books, and I’m finding the cookie recipes. I’m even taking advantage of the opportunity, and not just sharing them with my friends, but I’m saving the good ones to share for parties and other events through the month.
The first recipe is from the 2006 Taste of Home Halloween food and fun magazine. I love the Taste of Home Halloween books because they cover not just desserts the way some of the Halloween specific magazines do, but they also provide great craft, costume and party ideas. I have come to trust the Taste of Home recipes. I find that they’re generally really good.
The recipe for Black Cat Cookies was no exception. These cookies turned out to be delicious and cute. I always worry with shaped cookies that it will be tedious to cut out the shapes if I don’t have the right cookie cutter. These were really easy. I didn’t have to roll anything out, just shape the cookie dough into balls, squish them with a glass, and pinch some ears into shape to make it look like a cat. The chocolate cookie dough used was tasty AND didn’t come out flat in the higher altitudes. I haven’t had much luck when it comes to chocolate cookie dough, and I was glad to have one turn out so well. The face was easy to decorate as swell- a fork pressed into the dough made great whiskers, and quickly adding candy corns and cinnamon candies when the dough is soft and warm just out of the oven worked wonderfully.
My little niece had a black cat cookie last week when she came over for a family dinner. This week, we had a special breakfast with friends and family. She came up and asked me for another cat cookie. Hey, if my two year old niece liked the cookies well enough to remember them a week later, then it’s a recipe to keep!
Black Cat Cookies
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
3 tsp vanilla
3 cups flour
1 cup cocoa
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
48 candy corn candies
24 red-hot candies
In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla. In another bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture. Roll dough into 1 ½ inch balls. Place 3 inches apart on lightly greased baking sheets. Flatten with a glass dipped in sugar. Pinch the top of the cookie to form ears. For whiskers, press a fork twice into each cookie. Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are set. Remove from oven. Immediately press on candy corn for eyes and red hot candies for noses. Remove to wire racks to cool. Makes 2 dozen.
Note: This recipe was made as a cookie pop. Before the dough was smashed, they inserted a popsicle stick into the dough before it was pressed flat. I skipped this step. If you want a cute presentation at your Halloween party, this is a great way to go!