Chocolate Fingers

Chocolate finger invitations

Growing up I always loved leafing through Martha Stewart’s Halloween edition of her magazine for all sorts of creepy ideas. I remember being particularly struck by her severed finger invitations, and thinking that some day I would use those for an amazing Halloween party. Unfortunately, the store kits she used to sell have come and gone, and neither my parents nor I could find rubber mold to make them at home. But luckily, that’s when I discovered Silicone Moulds, who just so happened to carry a finger shaped silicone mold. Not only could I make my severed finger invitations, but I could have my cake and eat it too!

Chocolate Fingers
Yields about 18 fingers

For the cake truffle filling:
1 stick (113 grams) butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup white or yellow cake mix
1/2 cup all purpose flour

For the chocolate coating:
3 bars white chocolate
A few drops black food gel
Cooking oil (for thinning, if necessary)

Other ingredients or tools:
Silicon finger mold
A small, clean brush
Brown food gel
A sponge or cotton ball
Red jam (optional)
Boxes and black ribbon (if making invitations)

Continue reading

Advertisements

Candy Corn Swirl Cookies

Candy corn cookies

I love complicated and elaborate desserts. Something that really makes people say “Wow!” But sometimes, I don’t have the time (or energy) to put together such a dessert. Or sometimes I’m putting together multiple desserts and they just can’t all be “wowers” (hey, a girl’s gotta have a life outside of baking too!). It’s times like those, that I turn to simple cookies, like a candy corn-inspired swirl cookie!

Candy Corn Swirl Cookies
Yields about two dozen cookies

2 sticks (226 grams) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
Food coloring in yellow and orange

Continue reading

Braaaaains!

Halloween cupcakes

For ages I’ve been promising one of my friends that we’d do some fun baking together and that I’d show him some cool baking tricks. And what recipe, you ask, did I think would be perfect for honing his baking skills? Why, the first of my Halloween baking: brain cupcakes with bleeding centers! You know you have good friends when they’re equally as happy to make gross Halloween food as you. So without further ado, meet my baking assistant and mad scientist, Trond!

IMG_5420

Brain Cupcakes
Yields 12 cupcakes

For the cupcakes:
1/2 stick (57 grams) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup milk

For the filling:
Raspberry or strawberry jam

For the frosting:
2 sticks (about 226 grams) butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Pink food coloring

Continue reading

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes

Pumpkin spice cupcakes

Fall baking just wouldn’t be Fall baking without some pumpkin cupcakes. This time of year, I just want to eat all things pumpkin flavored until I’m so sick of pumpkin I don’t want to see it for another year. But that’s just me. My husband, on the other hand, couldn’t be less excited about pumpkin flavored things. Maybe it’s an American thing, a taste most of us acquired growing up. But being the usual good sport, my husband agreed to try my pumpkin flavored cupcakes, amongst the slew of other pumpkin flavored goodies. I haven’t seen my cupcakes since… or my husband for that matter…

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes
Yields 12 cupcakes

For the cupcakes:
1/2 stick (57 grams) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/3 cup pumpkin puree
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup milk

For the frosting:
1 cup milk
5 tbsp. all purpose flour
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup (226 grams) butter
1 cup granulated sugar

Continue reading

Spring M&M Cookies

???????????????????????????????

There are many things I love about Norway. The natural landscape, for example, is breathtaking! On a clear day, we have a gorgeous view overlooking a fjord, and with just a 15 minute walk we’re within view of Norway’s third largest glacier. The candy selection, however, is not so impressive. Most of it is just chocolate bars (plain or with nuts) or marzipan. There are some gummy sorts of treats, but my experience has been that the vast majority are very tough and hard to chew. On weekends, my husband and I like to have movie nights and treat ourselves to some sort of sweet for the occasion. Standing in the candy isle for what seemed like the billionth time, my husband was yet again chiding me over how picky I was being. “Aren’t there any candies you could eat? There must be something you’d like here,” he was saying for the umpteenth time. My appeal to just get a soda and call it good for my part wasn’t working. You see, I’m pretty particular when it comes to candy. I like chocolate and mint, Kit-Kat bars, M&Ms… any one of a number of things we don’t seem to have here. And that’s when I saw it: a bag called “Nonstops” with a picture of what looked almost exactly like M&Ms on the front. We bought it, took it home, and I tentatively tried one hoping there would be no marzipan “surprise” in the center (sorry, I’m just not a fan of marzipan). To my surprise, I had finally discovered a Norwegian candy I liked, the M&Ms of Norway no less, and couldn’t help but make some delicious cookies to celebrate.

Spring M&M Cookies
Yields approximately 20 cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup vegetable shortening
1 egg
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup M&Ms

Continue reading