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My hope is to inspire you to be fearless in the kitchen, to try new things, to take the time to make things the homemade way and most importantly, to have fun doing it!

Witches’ Finger Cookies Cooking View

These are not your mama’s lady fingers.  No, not the delicate sponge cookies used to make fancy desserts like charlottes and tiramisu.  These are cookies that look like severed fingers.  Gross, right?  If you’ve never seen cookies like this before and are feeling completely repulsed right now, I’d say that’s about right.  I first saw cookies like these about two or three years ago and was disgusted.  But each year around Halloween I see them again, and I guess I’ve become desensitized or maybe a bit morbidly fascinated by the idea.  In any case, this year was the year that I couldn’t resist finally attempting them.  Plus, it only seems fitting after making eyeball cupcakes and brain cupcakes in the past.

As far as the flavor of these goes, it’s just a basic sugar cookie – nothing spectacular.  This is one of those times where I’m more focused on the effect and less on the taste.  For a fun (creepy?) presentation, I threw some Oreos in a bag and coarsely crushed them up with my rolling pin.  Then I spread the crumbs over the serving platter to look like dirt and positioned the fingers as though they were protruding from it.  In a similar vein, you could serve a finger or two sticking out of the traditional dirt pudding set up instead of the usual gummy worms.  Disgustingly delicious.

Witches' Finger Cookies
Yield: about 32 cookies

Ingredients

For the cookies: 
1-2 tbsp. liquid red food coloring
32 blanched or roasted whole almonds
8 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup confectioners’ sugar
5 tbsp. granulated sugar
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
½ tsp. almond extract
Pinch of salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
Food coloring (optional)

For the egg wash:
1 large egg white, lightly beaten

Cooking View

Directions

  • Place the food coloring in a small bowl.  Use a clean paintbrush to paint the food coloring onto one half of each almond.  Set aside and let dry.

  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter and sugars and beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 1-2 minutes.  Stir in the egg, egg yolk, almond extract, and salt and mix until incorporated.  Mix in the flour on low speed just until combined.  If desired, tint the dough with food coloring.  Form the dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour.

  • When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Line baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.  Working with one half of the dough and keeping the other half chilled, divide into 16 equal pieces (a kitchen scale helps with this).  On a lightly floured work surface, roll each piece into a finger shape about 4-4½ inches long.  Pinch each piece of dough in two places to create knuckle shapes.  Use the back of a small paring knife to lightly score the surface of the knuckles.  Transfer the shaped fingers to the prepared baking sheets.  Repeat with the second half of the dough.

  • When all of the cookies are formed, lightly brush with egg white and place an almond nail at the end of each finger, pressing lightly to attach.  Bake until set, about 12 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let cool.  If the cookies have spread or lost shape at all, reform them gently while they are still warm but cool enough to handle.

Source

  • http://www.blognewblack.com Blog is the New Black

    Ahhhh! These are hilarious and clever!

  • http://movitabeaucraft.wordpress.com/ movita beaucoup

    Sick. And also, awesome. But, still… sick. Love it, and love your blog!

  • http://thekitchwitch.com TheKitchenWitch

    Those. Are. Awesome.

  • Just a fan!

    My family has always put a little jam under the almond to make the cookies look that much creepier!

  • http://warmvanillasugar.wordpress.com/ Katrina

    Eeee! Scary and fun! Love it!

  • http://tideandthyme.com Laura

    I saw something similar in Woman’s Day this month..but they diddn’t tint the cookie green. Yours look so much better! So bewitching!

  • http://www.evabakes.blogspot.com Eva

    Fun! What a great idea!

  • http://successalongtheweigh.blogspot.com/ The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh

    That is seriously cool! I wonder if I’d have the patience to whip those up this week! You could make a creepy trifle with those babies!

  • http://rosettassweettreats.wordpress.com Rosetta

    I’ve been making witch finger cookies since Martha Stewarts magazine came out; I still have the magazine! lol I have step by step photos on my (little) blog. I’ve always loved the green witch fingers best, but the natural ones with black fingernails and purple blood are cute also. Thanks for sharing…they look great!

  • http://www.anniescookinglab.com Annie @ Annie’s Cooking Lab

    Those are great! I’ve seen similar cookies that are just white, but I love them so much more in the green as a witch’s finger!

  • http://theavidappetite.com Rachel @ The Avid Appetite

    Spooktacular! These are so fun and look creepily realistic :)

  • http://muddledmom.wordpress.com muddledmom

    So adorable! Just what I was thinking of making this week but wondering if I could pull it off without the pan. Proof that you don’t need every kitchen gadget out there! Thanks for the great tips! Love these cookies!

  • http://www.bakedbyrachel.com Rachel @ Baked by Rachel

    I love that you tinted these green! Usually I see witches fingers as the standard sugar cookie color. This is so much more fun and great effect :)

  • Dalbury

    I had planned to make your home-made Oreos with halloween colored filling, but I think these might get a little more attention at a party! Decisions decisions…

  • http://www.kitchen-concoctions.com Heather of Kitchen Concoctions

    These ARE freakishly cute! Love the presentation with the crushed Oreos and I love the idea of serving these with the classic pudding ‘dirt’! I had a Halloween themed week last week and made my own version of witches’ finger cookies but used Nutter Butter Cookies dipped in green candy melts topped with a gum drop for the fingernail! Using an almond for the fingernail never even crossed my mind.

  • http://www.elementalcustard.com Mara @ Elemental Custard

    I have been making witches fingers for years. But I had never had the genius idea to colour them green!

    I usually put red piping gel underneath the “fingernail” so it looks like they are bleeding. That’s as festive as I get!

  • http://www.fransfavs.com Fran@fransfavs.com

    We’re on the same wavelength! Today I, too, posted some witch fingers with bloody fingernails:
    http://www.fransfavs.com/2011/10/halloween-witch-finger-cookies/
    I love yours climbing out of the Oreo dirt–great presentation!

  • http://thepajamachef.com Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef

    so cute! well, “cute” isn’t exactly accurate…but you get my drift, right?

  • http://aspoonfulofyumm.blogspot.com/ a spoonful of yumm

    wicked ! looks awesome

  • http://sweetsugarbelle.com SweetSugarBelle

    HAHAHAHA!!! ADORE these! I would like to make a jar of them!!!

  • http://atthepatisserie.wordpress.com Ann P.

    dang, Annie! I literally shuddered when I saw these, haha! They’re right up there in creepiness with those brain hemorrhage cupcakes from a a year or two ago! I’ve got to applaud your creativity and artistic skill :)

  • http://www.foodiebride.com Shawnda

    Nice job! Those are really realistic looking. I’m totally creeped out :)

  • http://ashleighskitchen.blogspot.com Ashleighskitchen

    These are SO awesome! You did a great job making them look real!

  • http://damndelicious.tumblr.com/ Chung-Ah @ Damn Delicious

    Wow, these look amazing. They look so complex but then I read through the recipe and it’s COMPLETELY doable. I will be seeing my 4-year old niece and nephew this week and I’m sure they would love these!! Or they might be too scared and not eat them at all… Oh well, more for the adults!!

  • melody

    Dear Annie, I live in France (french riviera near Cannes) and every day I read your blog. Thank you very much to share these delicious recipes. (Excuse me for my mistake in english !!! I try to improve my english through your blog!) This week-end I try with my daughter the witches’ fingers cookies.

  • http://www.bakeat350.blogspot.com bridget {bake at 350}

    OK…this is so funny…I posted LADIES’ fingers yesterday, too. And I *almost* made them green! Love them on the bed of crushed Oreos….that is brilliant!

  • Annie

    I saw yours yesterday and cracked up. Great minds!

  • http://www.thethreelittlepiglets.com/2011/10/do-you-lie-to-y Jen at The Three Little Piglets

    First of all – those are ridiculously cute! Second, I made some of that pumpkin spice syrup stuff you posted last week (or maybe the week before, I forget), and holy cow it is like coffee crack! It’s really good in just a warm mug of milk too, just FYI…

  • http://mytastyliving.blogspot.com/ Angela @ mytastyliving

    These are so creative and spoooky! :)

  • Mia

    I am so going to make these. You are so clever

  • http://www.eatmedelicious.com Ashley

    I love that you made these green! I’ve seen many witches’ finger cookies but they’re always uncoloured.

  • http://twitter.com/FoodStoriesBlog Food Stories

    OMG … These are so cute :-)

  • Susan

    Thank you for this! I have a party at work for Halloween tomorrow and we are having a scary dessert contest…if this doesnt win then I am not sure I want to see what does. Really eerie, especially with the oreo touch! LOVE IT!! I got to go get bakin’!

  • Ellis

    Although these cookies are delightful to look at, they do not have any taste whatsoever. This recipe was highly disappointing. If you’re looking for a Halloween decoration, I would recommend this as a craft! My kids took one bite and left the rest alone. Kids want something sugary and sweet for Halloween! It’s the one day of the year they’re allowed to rot their teeth, after all! 2 out of 5 stars for creativity…