Trick or treat cookies

These easy mix ginger cookies from Angela Nilsen are perfect for handing out to visiting trick or treaters
By Angela Nilsen
Trick or treat cookies
  • Rating:
  • Serves: makes 16
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Prep Time:
  • Effort: easy

Ingredients

For the cookies

  • 100 g butter, softened
  • 85 g light muscovado sugar
  • 3 tbsp golden syrup
  • 175 g plain flour
  • 2 tsp ground ginger

For the decoration

  • 250 g fondant icing sugar
  • edible liquorice/black and orange paste food colouring
  • coloured dragees, optional

Tips and Suggestions

The cookies can be made 2-3 days ahead and stored in an airtight tin. Decorate on the day so the biscuits stay crisp and the icing looks fresh. If iced too far ahead the biscuits will soften.

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Line 2 large baking sheets with baking parchment.

2. For the cookies: put the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until paler and creamy. Beat in the golden syrup, then stir in the flour and ginger to make a dough. Press it together with your hands then cut the dough into 16 pieces. Roll each piece into a small ball. Lay the balls on the baking sheets, well apart so they can spread, and gently press each one down with your fingers to flatten slightly. Bake, in batches if necessary, for about 15 minutes or until pale golden. Leave on the baking sheets for 1 - 2 minutes to firm up, then lift them off and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.

3. For the decoration: meanwhile, sift the fondant icing sugar in a bowl, then stir in 3 tablespoons of cold water, adding a drop more if necessary to mix to a thickish, smooth icing that will spread on the cookies, but not run off them. Take out a spoonful of the icing, put it in a small bowl and colour it black. Put another smaller spoonful in another bowl and colour it orange. Spoon the black and orange icings into 2 small greaseproof paper piping bags fitted with a small writing nozzle.

4. Spread the white icing over the the tops of each cookie. Do the spiders web pattern while the white icing is still wet, but let the white icing set a bit for the other patterns. For the spiders web, pipe 3-4 black circles on top of the still wet white icing, then using a cocktail stick or skewer, drag it in a straight line through the piped lines, starting from the centre of the icing going right to the edge. Continue at even intervals to create a web effect, then finish with a piped dot of black icing in the centre. For the other patterns, pipe black or orange shapes such as bats, scary ghost faces using the silver dragees for eyes if you wish, or scary words or simple patterns on the white icing. Leave to set.

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