Saturday, 27 October 2012

Hallowe'en Severed Finger Cookies


These are delicious, light and crisp. I have been making these for years now and they always mean the start of Hallowe'en in this house. They are a perfect activity of children, as the dough won't get tough even as it's shaped and reshaped. My son also loves to make skulls from the dough, marking out the eyes and mouth with small chocolate chips. Tasty and scary!!!

Recipe adapted from  "eat in" magazine October 2009 Issue 6

Makes 30 - 40 fingers

220g Butter, melted
150g Icing sugar, sifted
1 Egg
1tsp Vanilla essence
450g Plain flour, more if necessary
2tsp Baking powder
200g Marzipan, finely chopped
Pinch of salt
100g Whole almonds
100g Glace cherries, quartered

Place the butter, sugar, egg, vanilla, flour, baking powder, marzipan and salt in a large mixing bowl and work into a smooth dough, adding a little more flour, if the dough is too soft, the biscuits will spread in the oven. The stiffer the dough the more detail the cookies will retain.

Wrap in cling film and chill for 30 minutes.

Line several baking trays with baking parchment. On a floured work surface shape the dough into long sausages about as thick as your thumb. For each finger cut the dough into 12-15cm long pieces.

Shape into fingers, making the joints and the fingertips thicker and the spaces between thinner: Push an almond into the tip of each finger to make fingernails and make indentations to mark the knuckles.

Make a depression at the other end of each finger with a wooden spoon handle and push a a piece of the glace cherry into the depression. If cherries aren't your thing, dried cranberries will do the trick too.

Chill the fingers again (I don't always do this, especially if the dough is still cold). Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/ Gas Mark 5. Bake the fingers for about 12-15 minutes until pale and golden. Allow to cool before serving.

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