My sister and I used to trick or treat every year when we were younger.
I can’t remember when we started by I do remember some of the ‘treats’ we were given.
One lady gave us each 5 cents.
It doesn’t seem like much but back then you could get a pretty good sweet at the shops for 5c.
Another household gave us bananas which we were both singularly unimpressed with.
I didn’t even eat banana bread in my fussy days so they may as well have given me a lump of coal.
Fifteen years ago, Halloween wasn’t really a thing here in Australia which is probably why the houses we trick or treated were so unprepared.
Fast-forward to now and the shops are filled with all manner of Halloween decorations, costumes and candy and the neighbourhood is dressed spooktacularly.
From about 4pm on the 31st you see little witches, ghouls, fairies, goblins, cowboys and mummies going door to door trick-or-treating.
I can’t wait to have a house so we can welcome the kiddies with bowls full of treats.
Of course I will probably dress up (any excuse!) to greet them.
I’m not sure that parents would like their children to receive baked goods from strangers but if it was socially acceptable I would whip up a mega batch of skeleton gingerbread for any trick-or-treaters who knocked on my door.
They were my first ever attempt at piping royal icing and I have to say. It wasn’t too tricky.
Yes it’s a pretty amateur design but it has the desired effect. I had a little bit too much fun photographing these, giggling to myself as I set them up in different arrangements.
It doesn’t even matter if they lose a few limbs (or a head) in the baking process, it just adds to the authenticity. Use your favourite biscuit recipe or my delicious gingerbread.
I discovered the recipe a few years ago and it has been my go-to ever since.
The best part is these babies keep for quite a few days so you can make them in advance for your ghoulish guests.
- 125g butter
- 1/2 cup golden syrup
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg yolk (keep the white for the icing)
- 1 tbsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp mixed spice
- 1 tsp bicarb-soda
- 2 1/2 cups self-raising flour, sifted
- Icing - 1 egg white & 1 cup icing sugar
- Preheat the oven to 160C fan-forced.
- Line two baking trays with baking paper.
- Combine butter, golden syrup and brown sugar in a small pan and heat them over medium heat, stirring, until it all melts together.
- Remove to a bowl and cool (I usually put the bowl in an ice bath for a little while because I’m impatient!).
- Stir in the egg yolk and the rest of the dry ingredients to form a soft dough. You can do this on the electric mixer.
- Turn it out onto plastic wrap and press into a flat disc. Rest in fridge for 1 hour to firm up.
- Divide the dough into 3 pieces and work with one piece at a time.
- Roll the dough to 7-8mm on lightly floured surface and cut shapes with a cookie cutter.
- Place on a baking paper-lined tray and bake for 7-10 minutes until firm. Stand on tray for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool.
- For the icing:
- Whisk the egg white to almost firm peaks then slowly whisk in 1 cup of icing sugar.
- Pipe the skeletons onto the cooled biscuits then leave the icing to set.