Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween
The Freshman Cook!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Halloween Thumbprint Cookies!

Thumbprint cookies are one of my favorite cookies to make. I love that you can always change the colors to go with any occasion, and I use them as fillers (for lack of a better word), when I send Christmas cookies. What I mean is that I put a few in with the other cookies in a tin to fill in the little holes, or I toss a couple in a bag to give the right amount of color to a basket. They are versatile, pretty and everyone always loves them. All good qualities for a cookie! No wonder they are one of my favorites. I hope these become one of your too!
Halloween Thumbprint Cookies!
(adapted from Southern Living)
(makes 7 dozen)
  • 1 cup Butter
  • 1cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 large Eggs
  • 1 teaspoons Vegetable Oil
  • 2 teaspoons Vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon Lemon Juice
  • 5 1/4 cup Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Cream of Tartar
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Beat your butter on medium until it is fluffy.
Add both sugars, and beat well.
Add your eggs, oil, vanilla and lemon juice.
Beat until blended.
 In a separate bowl, mix together your flour, cream of tartar,
baking soda and salt.
Beat until blended. 
Shape dough into 1" balls.
Take your thumb, or the end of a wooden spoon,
and make an indentation in the middle of each cookie.
Bake for 9-11 minutes.
Do not brown these cookies. They will get a little brown
on the bottom. When they do, they are done.
Place on a cooling rack to cool completely.
Once your cookies are cooled, 
they are ready to be frosted.
I love this icing and it has always worked great for me.
I used Americolor Super Black and Orange for the colors.
I colored about 1/2 cup of each color.
I used a wilton #10 tip to fill each of the thumbprints.
Let dry completely.
I filled 3 boxes with these cookies as a special
Halloween gift. I have lots left over for other friends.
Aren't these boxes cute? I picked these up at Home Goods 
about a month ago.
Thanks for joining me today!
Happy Halloween!

We are partying at these fun spots:
Trick or Treat Tuesday 

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Halloween Pumpkin Salsa!

Only 3 more days until Halloween!!! I can feel the excitement mounting, can't you?!! Tonight I made a simple, festive pumpkin salsa with Halloween in mind, and I paired it with some orange and black store bought chips!
Halloween Pumpkin Salsa!
1/2 of a Orange Pepper
1/2 cup Black Beans
2 teaspoon Pumpkin Seeds
4 leaves Cilantro
1 clove Garlic
1/4 White Onion
1 cob Roasted Corn
1/3 cup canned Pumpkin
2 teaspoon Sugar
Tortilla Chips
I started by going through my beans and making sure 
there were no foreign items from the bag.
This is a necessity when making beans.
Soak your beans according to the directions on the bag.
I soaked mine overnight.
The next morning I rinsed the beans, and then placed 
them in clean water to cook.
I let them simmer with a lid on for 1 1/2 hours.
Set the lid a little to the side so the steam can escape.
Rinse when they are done and refrigerate.
Roast your orange pepper on your stove, if it is gas.
Just keep turning the pepper with tongs until most
of your pepper is roasted.
When you are done roasting, place the pepper in a 
small bowl and cover with plastic. The heat trapped in 
the plastic helps you get the roasted skin off of the pepper.
After 20-30 minutes, pull the skin off of the pepper.
Leave a little on, like above.
Cut the pepper in half and take the seeds out.
Then chop the pepper into small bite size pieces.
For the roasted corn, I used an ear I purchased at 
a grocery store. The store grills out every weekend,
and they roast corn, grill ribs and tri tip. It is 
all so incredibly good! You can also roast your corn in
a pan on your stove.
Cut the corn off of the cob.
Chop your white onion.
Chop your clove of garlic.
Put everything we chopped in the bowl, which includes,
onion, orange pepper, corn and garlic. Add your beans.
Mix together.
Add pumpkin seeds, chopped  cilantro, pumpkin and sugar.
Mix well again.
Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Thanks for joining me today!


Saturday, October 27, 2012

Halloween Creatures Marshmallow Pops!

These fun Halloween Creatures Marshmallow Pops are easy to make, and just plain fun! They are perfect to give together as a bunch, or separately!

Halloween Creatures Marshmallow Pops!
Kraft StackerMallows
Sticks for Marshmallows
Americolor Orange,Violet, Electric Green, Super Black
Candy Corn
Start by putting a black base color on two marshmallows.
Let dry.
Pipe a pumpkin outline on top of the black.
I didn't show it here,sorry. But after some
experimentation, I think the pumpkin looks better 
with a black base.
Fill in the pumpkin outline by going up and down
 inside the pumpkin. It gives it texture and dimension.
Draw Jack O'lantern faces on the pumpkin.
Pipe a green base on the marshmallow.
Let dry.
Using black frosting, pipe the hair on Frankenstein.
Fill in the hair.
I like the black base on Frankenstein also, 
so when I made it again I added it.
Add a little stitch to Frankie's cheek.
Two make the bolts, dip two mini marshmallows in green frosting.
Let dry.
Give Frankie his eyes and mouth.
Attach a bolt to each side of his head.
Isn't he cute?
Base coat another marshmallow with purple.
I don't know why it looks blue. Maybe too much light?
Outline and fill in some hair for Dracula.
Add eyebrows, eyes and a mouth.
Finish the eyes, and Dracula is done!
I used black and orange straws for these guys, 
but cookie sticks would work also.
I added the ghost at the last minute.
Pretty simple, add a white base and eyes!
Wrap each of the creatures in plastic 
and tie with a ribbon. I had an empty jar
that I poured candy corn in, and stuck
the pops down in it. I cut them all different sizes,
so they could be stacked all around the jar.
 Tie ribbon around the jar, and you are done!

Thanks for joining me today!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Monster Munch and Pinterest Blog Hop

It is time again for our Pinterest Inspired Blog Hop!  Today I made some Monster Munch from the blog, Our Best Bites, authored by Sara and Kate. When I saw the picture of this Monster Munch on Pinterest, I immediately knew I would be making it. I actually made 4 bags and they are going in the Halloween care package I am sending to my son and his roommates. It is incredibly delicious. I know they will love it, and so will you!
Monster Munch
  • 1 package Almond Bark (1 pound)
  • 12 cups cooked Popcorn 
  • 1 cups Candy Corn
  • 2 cups Pretzels
  • 1 cup Reese's Pieces
I made the following changes to the original recipe:
I added the pretzels instead of peanuts, and
increased the amount to 2 cups.
I increased the amount of Reeses Pieces to 1 cup.
Check out Our Best Bites for the original recipe.
Have a baking sheet lined with parchment or wax paper 
ready when you take this off the stove.

Start your almond bark melting on the stove in a double boiler.
Keep it on low for the best results. 
As you are preparing the rest of the recipe, 
just stir it a couple times.
I broke each pretzel into about 3 pieces. I thought
these might be too big.
Place your popcorn in a very large bowl.
Add the pretzels, candy corn, and Reese's Pieces.
Mix it together so it is well combined.
Once your almond bark is melted, 
pour it into your bowl over the popcorn, candy, and pretzels.
Mix it really well. 
Pour it onto your prepared baking sheet, 
and spread it all over the sheet.
Let it cool.
Once cool, crack the popcorn bark into pieces.
You could put it in a bowl to "munch" on,......
or wrap it up in these cute clear bags.
What a great treat, that everyone would love to get!

Happy Halloween!
Thanks for joining me today!

Check out our blog hop to see what other
Pinterest Inspired creations will inspire you,
or enter one you have already made!