Halloween has always been fun at our house.
By the time Halloween swoops by the weather has changed, gloomy cold days have made their way to us again. The world seems to know when it is Halloween, all of a sudden the trees start losing their colorful leaves and the landscape turns more austere and rigid. The deep fog in the valley makes the perfect frame for the barren persimmon trees with their last fruits still hanging from the branches. This time of the year brings out my passion for cooking and baking in full force!
Halloween is a special time.
Since my children were little, I used to bake cookies and cakes around this time of the year for two main reasons: it makes the house smell delicious and at the same time, it makes it cozy and warm. Nowadays, I continue baking at home and also, I bring my enthusiasm to my pupils. As a teacher, I love to see how children appreciate the kind activity of baking. It simply makes them happy.
This year for Halloween, I chose a simple short bread recipe for the cookies with cute decorations and also an absolutely delicious pumpkin chocolate cake. I am very excited to share these precious gems with you. I hope this post of mine will inspire you and will take a sparkle of joy from my home to yours.
250 g white flour
125 g sugar
135 g butter
1 egg yolk
pinch of salt
Place the butter out of refrigerator ahead of time so that when you start mixing the ingredients it will be nice and soft.
Mix together the sugar and the eggs, and slowly add the flour. Mix in the butter cut up in cubes, and the salt. The the dough will be to hard to mix with the wooden spoon, pull up your sleeves and start kneading it by hand, until you’ll form a ball. Divide the ball in two smaller balls, flatten them, and place them in saran wrap. Let them rest in the fridge for at least one hour.
Once you take the dough out of the refrigerator and they are at room temperature, start working it with your hands and with a rolling pin spread it out. Start making the cookies with the cookie cutters, add flour if the dough is too sticky and gets stuck on the rolling pin or your hands.
Once all the shapes are ready place them onto a baking sheet and bake them for 15 minutes at 180 C or 350 F. Enjoy the unmistakable scent of when the cookies are just about ready to come out the oven!
Pumpkin Chocolate Cake
270 g pumpkin pulp, cooked
150 g sunflower seed oil
20 g sugar
240 g white flour
80 g almond flour
1Tbsp baking powder
80 g chocolate chips
1 organic orange
Cook the pumpkin in hot water with a pinch of salt, strain the water when the pumpkin is soft add the vegetable oil and set aside. Mix together the eggs and the sugar with an electric beater till foamy and light. Add the ground almonds or almond flour, sifted white flour, baking powder. Slowly mix in the chocolate chips and the zest of a whole, organic orange.
Bake for 50 minutes at 180 C or 350 F.
Treat the children in your life with these and other delicious sweets, they’ll love it. They will feel nurtured and cared for and they will associate holidays with a time to share the love in the air.
Happy Winter to you all!