Halloween Treat #3: Zombie Sugar Cookies

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For this week’s Halloween-themed treat, I made Zombie Sugar Cookies.  Now, what’s the difference between normal sugar cookies and zombie ones?  Well, it’s honestly all in the food dye and decorating, so if you have a favorite sugar cookie recipe, feel free to use that instead (and post it in the comments; I’m always looking for good/better/best recipes.).  The recipe I used makes soft sugar cookies that are really easy to cut into shapes, but if you like crispier cookies or ones that don’t have that slight cake batter feel, I’d recommend using another one (Just be careful — the crispy/soft ones can run, ruining your shapes.).  Now on to the recipe!

First, let’s gather our ingredients.  For the cookies, you’ll need butter, white sugar, eggs, vanilla extract, flour, baking powder, salt, and green food dye.

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To decorate them, you’ll need icing of some kind.  I used gel icing because it’s cheap and everywhere right now, but if you want icing that will actually harden, you should get some royal icing or homemake your own using this recipe.  Royal icing can be bought at Walmart, online, or at various baking shops.  Since I like hardened icing, I’ll probably be using it in the future.  Finally, you’ll need cookie cutters either in gingerbread man shape or in special zombie shapes.  I just so happened to already own special zombie cookie cutters, so I used those, but you can easily mutilate a normal gingerbread man to look like a zombie.

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Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Green food dye
  • Icing of your choice
  • Any other decorating things you want

First, cream together the butter and sugar in a large bowl until it’s smooth (Creaming just means mash the sugar into the butter.).  Make sure the butter is very soft.

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Next, beat in the eggs and vanilla extract.

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Once those are well incorporated, stir in the baking powder, salt, and flour (add about 1 cup of flour at a time until fully mixed.).

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At this stage, you should start adding the green food dye.  I deliberately made sure the color wasn’t uniform to give the cookies a mottled look, but you do you.

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Finally, once the dough is nicely green and firm, cover, and chill it in the fridge for at least an hour (preferably more).

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Once your dough is thoroughly chilled (It’ll be hard, but you can still press into it.), take a large chunk of it and roll it out to 1/2″ thick.  Do not take all of the dough out at once (Despite what you see in the following picture.).  To get good cookie cutter cookies, you need to work with chilled dough; otherwise, it’ll get too sticky.  Don’t forget to lay down flour and sugar on the counter and rolling pin you’re working with — that’ll prevent stickiness too.

This is also the time to preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

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Now we can start using the cookie cutters.

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Place the cookies 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake for 6 to 8 minutes, depending on your oven’s heating abilities.  Cool completely — for at least 15 minutes.

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Once cooled, you can begin the awesome process of decorating!

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If you’re using gel icing and want to do something detailed, you should lay down the blocks of color first and then draw the outlines around it.

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Finish up with your fine detail work (blood, etc).

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If you’re using hard icing, do the outlines first and then fill in the color.

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Or just have fun!

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So there you have it — adorable little zombie sugar cookies for you and your friends to decorate and eat together.  Enjoy!

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