Halloween treat recipes to keep the kids busy
Looking for something spooky and original to make with the little ones? Look no further
It's that time of year again, where the kids are already hyper to the point that you're concerned about the impact the rapidly approaching onslaught of sugar is going to have on both their ability to sit still, and your ability to focus! There is little point in avoiding it and, you know what they say: If you cant beat them, join them.
I would like to caveat this with the reassurance that this is one of those glorious times of year when we (the alleged adults) are given the ok to regress back to our childhood and enjoy the fun. You are excused from adulthood, so get involved!
The run up to Halloween can be hectic trying to organise costumes (post your photos in the comments as I'm sure there have been some inspired creations!) so take some time out, gather your nearest and dearest, and make some original, spooky themed snacks to keep you going until the big event. These will seriously impress those trick or treaters.
- 100g sponge cake: can be chocolate, plain, or whatever flavour you desire. Red velvet gives a nice red blood like finish!
- 100g chocolate cookies
- 100g milk chocolate
- 200g white chocolate
- Smarties or Skittles for the iris
- Icing pens or buttercream with a very thin nozzle for the pupil and veins
- Break up the cake and the cookies into a bowl and whizz with the electric whisk until you're left with crumbs.
- Melt the milk chocolate in a bowl over simmering water or in the microwave for 15 seconds at a time until completely smooth.
- Add the melted chocolate to the mix and whisk until all the crumbs are coated in chocolate and it starts to come together. You may want to add a little red food colouring here.
- Roll the mix, in your hands, into equal eyeball sized balls until the whole mix is used up.
- Refrigerate for at least an hour to harden them up.
- When you are almost ready to take the naked eyeballs out the fridge, melt your white chocolate in a similar way to the milk chocolate.
- If you're having them on skewers, now is a good time to put them on the skewers as you'll want to dip the chilled eyeball into the melted white chocolate until it's completely covered. If you're not having skewers, you can do this with a fork and just remove the fork later. ~Top Tip~ you can stab the forks or skewers into florist's foam so the chocolate dries evenly, standing up.
- Put the white eyeballs back in the fridge for the chocolate to completely harden.
- Decorate! You can go mad here. The image has used smarties for the iris with red icing for veins and black for the pupil but you can let your imagination go wild, It's Halloween after all!
Pretty much anything in this recipe can be supplemented for something else if you prefer. You could use rice crispies instead of cookies, you could use buttercream or white chocolate instead of the milk chocolate. You could even use fondant for the whites if you wanted to get fancy!
Easy peasy and you can eat them on the run up to Halloween, keep them for a party, or hand them out to trick or treaters for something a bit different.
Sticking with the body parts theme and using things you can throw together at little notice, this one will take moments to prepare and will be sure to keep everyone entertained.
- Your favourite cookies: shop bought is fine, but if you want to make your own, go for it!
- Mini marshmallows
- Almond chips
- Red food colouring
- 100g of butter
- 100g icing sugar (alternatively, shop bought frosting is great)
- Break your cookies in half. You might want to use a knife for this as they tend not to behave!
- Mix the red food colouring into the frosting: if you want to make your own, just whip together the butter and icing sugar until stiff and mix in the colouring.
- Add a layer of the red icing to the tops of each of the halves of the cookie.
- On their flat edges, sit a row of mini marshmallows all along the rounded edge of one half of the cookie, so they resemble teeth.
- Add a couple of slices of almonds to resemble sharp pointy fangs.
- Place the other iced half cookie on top of the marshmallows, matching the curved edge of the lower cookie.
- Repeat until you're out of cookies!
Your filling can be any colour you want, really. I like the red as it looks like blood but green or black would be just as effective. You can also add food colouring to the cookies if you make them yourself and you can make the teeth more jagged by cutting them into points.
Similarly to the creepy smiles, this next recipe requires little more than a packet of cookies. This one is more 'grab and go' friendly, so could be set aside for trick or treaters. If, of course, you can resist eating them all yourself!
- Oreos: any cookie will do but I find Oreos are good as the black and white interior matches the decoration. They also take a skewer nicely.
- 200g white chocolate: more depending on how many you want.
- Black icing: other colours will work too but black is good for skeletons. If you want to make you own, 100g of butter and 100g icing sugar mixed till stiff with some black food colouring or charcoal (be very careful with charcoal as it interacts with some medications!) will do the trick nicely.
- Skewers or sturdy lollipop sticks.
- Anything else you think would be good to decorate.
- Skewer your cookies. If you are using Oreos or something similar, the skewer will fit nicely in the squidgy middle. Others without this might need a little more effort and might be less stable when finished.
- Melt your white chocolate in a bowl over simmering water until it's completely smooth.
- Dip your skewered cookies into the white chocolate until they're completely coated and place them either on some parchment or stab the skewer into some florist's foam for them to dry upright.
- Leave in the fridge to dry for around half an hour. If you're making your own icing, now would be a good time for that!
- Take the skulls out the fridge and pipe creepy little features onto them.
- Add any other decoration you might like, the photo has black ribbons but you could add edible glitter or sprinkles etc.
Are you ready to be thoroughly grossed out? We all secretly love pimple popping, right? Well now you can have as many massive pimples to pop as you like...!
- 1 medium egg
- 120g caster sugar
- 175ml milk
- 120ml vegetable oil
- 230g self raising flour
- Thick custard, you can make custard yourself, but cold Ambrosia is more kid-friendly to keep it simple
- Fondant: This will form the surface of the zits so you can go for skin colour or for a more Halloween feel, you can use green.
- Red food colouring.
- Preheat your oven to 180C and put cupcake holders in your cupcake tin. It doesn't matter what these look like as you'll be taking them off as soon as they are done anyway but they will help with getting them out the tin.
- Mix together the sugar, milk, whole egg and vegetable oil until you feel the sugar has dissolved.
- Sift in the flour and mix till fully combined - the mixture will be quite wet.
- Fill the cupcake holders to 2/3 full and bake in the oven for around 20 mins, rotate your tins half way through for an even bake (if you have a temperamental oven, like ours). After 20 mins, poke a few with a skewer, if the skewer doesn't come out clean, give another few mins and repeat.
- Once baked, remove from the tins and leave to fully cool on a wire rack.
- Roll your fondant flat to around 5mm thick.
- Cut circles that are big enough to cover the entire cupcake (right round the bottom too) with about 1.5 inches to spare on top so there is room for the pus.
- Take the cupcakes out their cases and coat the bottom and sides in a very thin layer of the custard, just enough to make the fondant stick to it (you might want to use another sticky method you know about for this, i'm open to suggestions!) Then place the coated cupcake in the middle of its fondant circle.
- Wrap the fondant up the sides of the cupcake and gather it above, leaving a hole for the custard.
- Your custard should be cold and thick enough to not be running all over the place. If it isn't, consider adding some cornflour to stiffen it up a bit. Spoon some of this into the hole at the top of the cupcake so it fills out the excess fondant. There should be around an inch of custard between the top of the cake and the fondant. Press the fondant gently so it sticks to the custard.
- Don't close the fondant entirely, there should be some custard poking through.
- Thin down some red food dye with some water and brush it around the edge of the open part for that truly revolting inflamed look!
- To pop the pimple, as with any other pimple, you simply press down around the sides of the visible pus. The pustard (ha), should come spewing out the hole in a satisfying mess!
- If you can still stomach it, it's now ready to eat!
For something a little more challenging, we look to the spookiest person on this year's Great British Bake Off, comfortably giving Noel Fielding a run for his money. Of all of Helena's amazing bakes, this is the simplest and, if you've got some fancy pants silicon moulds, it can be a showstopper all over again. I recommend ditching the fancy stuff and going for a more creative, homemade look with these gorgeously grim wicked witch finger biscuits.
- 170g salted butter
- 100g icing sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- 240g plain flour
- 2.5 tablespoons of matcha powder
- Caramel: shop bought is fine but if you want to make it, you'll need 40g butter, 40g dark brown sugar and 200g condensed milk.
- 200g white chocolate
- 200g green candy melts (alternatively, 400g white chocolate and green food colouring)
- Cream the butter (best to start from room temperature if you want to maintain use of your arm!) in a large bowl with a wooden spoon or and electric whisk.
- Add the icing sugar and whisk until fluffy.
- Add the egg yolks and combine.
- Add the flour and the matcha powder (if you're using it), mix to form a dough.
- Roll the dough into a rectangle so it's around 1cm thick and then cut out the shapes you'd like your fingers to be. If you have a cutter, great, if not, consider carefully cutting around your fingers.
- Place the cut-out dough onto parchment paper on a baking tray and put them in an oven, preset to 180C. They should take around 10 - 12 mins but keep an eye on them, they will go very slightly golden when they are ready.
- Remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack to cool completely.
- When the biscuits are completely cool, start melting your caramel. Shop bought is absolutely fine for this and it might be melted enough, otherwise a quick whizz in the microwave should soften it up. If you want to make your own, see below. I would melt the caramel then allow it to start to set again to make it easier to work with.
- With the caramel at the consistency where you can spread it without if running all over the place, take a good dollop and spread it over the surface of the biscuit, trying to keep in within the edges of the biscuit. If you want a thick layer, you might consider a quick go in the freezer at this point so you can add another layer.
- You have the option at this point to make a little channel down the centre of the caramel, the length of the finger and add jam or strawberry sauce for a gory bloody addition!
- Refrigerate for around half an hour.
- Melt the white chocolate and candy melts in a bowl over simmering water until it's completely smooth and an even green colour.
- Take the fingers out the fridge and place them on a wire rack over a piece of parchment - it's about to get messy!
- Pour the green chocolate over the fingers until they are fully coated. If you find it's too thin and is running off, let the chocolate harden slightly and go again. Place them in the fridge for 5 minutes to set - but not fully!
- Take them out the fridge and start the decoration. You can use a knife to create the folds of the knuckles and if you want to add bloody streaks you can do this with icing or food dye.
- Add the almond on the tip for that horrid witchy finger nail look.
- Put the butter and sugar in a pan and cook on low heat, stirring continuously until the sugar has melted.
- Add the condensed milk and bring to the boil.
- Stir continuously until the mix is golden.
These can be as fancy or as easy as you want. There are lots of cool additions such as candy bones inside for an anatomical touch, or popping candy to make something more fun.
Adapted from Helena's own recipe, which can be found here: https://thegreatbritishbakeoff.co.uk/recipes/all/helenas-wicked-witch-fingers/