What kid doesn’t love decorating for Halloween? And whether your family is into the ghoulish or the less frightening, stirring up a little ghostly fun is a great way to bring in all the wonderful treats.
With this thought in mind, I started going through my mental flip-file of ideas for holiday smiles. I came up with a decorating idea, but a treat? Hmm … Nothing. There was something tugging at the back of my mind, but it was wrong somehow. This morning when I woke up, still thinking about a treat for October 31, it hit me. Snowmen!
Snowmen? For Halloween? That wasn’t right. But it was. Several years ago, Martha Stewart made awesome meringue snowmen for Christmas. Why not change the tiny darlings into little ghosts?
Find the original recipe and directions that inspired this one, check out MarthaStewart.com. Keep that in mind for December. But for October, get ready to adapt.
Things you WON’T need in Martha’s recipe: almond paste or red food coloring (because ghosts don’t wear scarves, silly!) Basically, all you’ll need is 3 egg whites, 3/4 cup sugar (super fine works best) and 1/4 tsp cream of tartar. Plus, for the ghosts eyes you’ll need a tube of black frosting (you can make your own, but the pre-made and in a tube kind from the grocery store are super handy).
– Have the kids separate three egg whites into a bowl, beat them with a whisk attachment until their foamy and then add ¼ tsp cream of tartar.
– Continue beating the eggs–have the kids take turns—and beat them until soft peaks form and then slowly add the sugar. Continue the beating until stiff peaks form.
– Scoop the meringue into a pastry bag…we don’t even bother putting tip on…and have the kids form their very own ghosts onto parchment lined baking sheet (although we’ve been known to substitute aluminum foil when we’re out of parchment, as you can see in the photo :D)
– Finally, get out that frosting and let the kids pipe on some eyes and scary mouths.
Once these fun and tasty Halloween cuties are done, you might want to jazz thing up with some more permanent ‘table ghosts’…making them is just as fun. For each table ghost you’ll need:
– Soda bottles (any sizes)
– White squares of cotton fabric: measure the height of the bottle, multiply by 2 and add 2-3 inches. Cut fabric to this size square
– Fabric stiffener
Pour fabric stiffener into bowl. Help the kids saturate each piece in stiffener and drape it over a soda bottle. If excess fabric remains at the bottom, straighten it to form a support. Place the bottle/ghost on waxed paper until dry. Kids can remove the dry fabric from the bottle.
If you want your ghosts to have arms, poke a hole in both sides of the bottle before you begin. Let the kids gather small branches and push them into the hole. Adjust to make the ghosts arms slightly raised. The kids can secure the branches with masking tape. Drape the fabric as before, manipulating it into the branch to make ‘fingers’ and give the arms some shape while the bottom of the arms dangle. When dry, carefully remove without smashing the arms.
Have a fun and safe Halloween. Enjoy each little princess, pirate, ghost and ghoul that comes to your home, your door and your party. Most of all enjoy your own!
Happy Halloween Cooking,
Alex, Soph and Mom
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