Sunday, October 23, 2011

Witch Finger Cookies (The Healthiest Version in Town)



Okay, so there are about a million blogposts about Witch's Finger cookies out there on the interwebs. Consider this contribution #1,000,001. What makes my version stand out is that it is made with whole wheat flour, almond flour (which adds calcium and protein, among other nutritious things), and has a bit less sugar than other recipes. Oh, and did I mention that mine doesn't call for red food coloring, which has been linked to everything from hyperactivity in children to allergies to cancer? In true FBS fashion, I try to capture the fun, yummy, spookiness of these cookies in a clean eating way.

I adapted from this recipe at Fabulous Foods

Ingredients
yields about three dozen or more (depending on what size you make them)

  • 1 cup butter, softened (preferably grass-fed and/or organic)
  • 2/3 cup sugar or Sucanat
  • 1 egg
  • 1T vanilla
  • 1 1/2c whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 1/4c almond flour*
  • 1t baking powder
  • 1t salt
  • raw sliced almonds
  • 100% fruit spread (raspberry or strawberry or anything red)


*I like to use the flour from unblanched almonds; I think the little brown speckles just add to the witchy-skin feeling. But you can certainly use the kind from blanched nuts for a less mottled look.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Add the butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla to a large bowl and beat with a hand mixer. In another bowl, combine the flours, baking powder and salt. Then gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet, while beating. It will form a sticky dough. Chill the dough in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
All by himself and no shell in the bowl!
Take out about a quarter of the dough; keep the rest in the fridge. Use a heaping teaspoon to roll into the shape of a finger bone (the cookies will spread, so make them skinnier than finger-size). Remember when you were little and you'd be playing with clay and making worms or snakes? That's what you need to do here. I make mine about six inches long.

Dip the sliced almond into a teensy bit of the jam, then press lightly onto the cookie dough to form a "fingernail." 

Cookies are a family affair around here.


My son's version looks a little ingrown. Ick.
My fingernails (below) are in a bit better position. I also formed the fingers so they'd be a little thicker at the knuckle and used a sharp knife to make tiny slashes to add to the knuckle-like appearance. Place the cookies a couple of inches apart on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. 

Bake for 18-22 minutes. (In the meantime, start making the next batch with dough from the refrigerator. If the dough is very sticky, put it back in the fridge for another few minutes so it'll be easier to work with.) 

The cookies are ready when they are a pale golden brown. They will be quite delicate so be careful when removing them from the sheet to cool on racks. 



I love when the almonds crack or break a bit. Makes them extra creepy!


For more real food ideas for Halloween, click here.

2 comments:

  1. Wow, that is a great idea! Thanks for sharing it :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. I've made similar ones with whole wheat pizza dough and pumpkin seeds- due to a nut allergy.  Dip them in marinara sauce for a meal instead of a cookie.

    ReplyDelete

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