Late September-early October happens to be one of my favourite times of the year. Autumn as a season doesn't hold the same expectation as summer, yet in recent years it seems that we have been experiencing fairly similar weather both in summer and autumn. This of course makes autumn the somewhat superior season as throwing on an extra layer of clothing is rarely met begrudgingly, since winter is fast approaching. Also with the slightly cooler weather, it's the time of year for hearty, filling dishes to be re-introduced to the kitchen. The children are now back to school, after their long summer break, but still the evenings are bright enough and not too cold to let them get some fresh air after their homework. I love heading out with the children for Autumn walks in the countryside. The colours on display are so beautiful and at every turn there is the chance to pick a few berries or gather some other foragable goods. Never collecting enough to make even a small batch of jam I generally use the foraged fruit in a crumble or maybe just sprinkled over some pancakes to create a fruity treat. This time of year also sees great preparations for what not only is loved by my children but also by myself, Halloween. I have always been an avid Halloween fan and now that the children are getting older, and even more involved with the party preparations, this is indeed a very exciting time in our house. I never put myself under too much pressure with the party food, once there are a few ghoulish looking goodies and a big bowl of a funny looking drink, for the kids to ladle into big cups or goblets, they are all more than happy. There are a few Halloween party ideas on my Halloween Page.
If you are looking for a cookery based activity, for your Halloween party, creating these hungry cookie monsters will keep children very happy. You could make up a few that will give the children lots of ideas for creating their own little monsters. The cookies can be homemade but for less hassle a few packets of your favourite chocolate chip cookie will do the trick.
16 chocolate chip cookies
60g soft butter
40g cream cheese
200g icing sugar, sifted
1 teasp vanilla extract
food colouring - colour of your choice
1. Make the icing by combining the butter and cream cheese in a large bowl. Blend well, using a wooden spoon.
2. Slowly add the icing sugar and continue to blend. Add the vanilla extract, blend until pale and fluffy. Divide the icing between three bowls and add a tiny drop of different food colouring to each.
3. Sandwich together two cookies with a spoonful of icing. Do the same for the rest of the cookies and then decorate your monsters using chocolate chips for the teeth and stick marshmallows on the top, using a little icing as glue.