Apparently our current decorations are “cute.”
Adorable for Halloween. . . .
And perfect for Thanksgiving, too!
Really, they’re lovely for any occasion during the fall season.
Last year I went a little out of my Halloween comfort zone and added a spider to my treat — remember my Spooky Spider Chocolate Truffles? Spider and all, somehow they were still cute!
Oh and if your’re wondering, our decorations consist of outdoor candy corn lights, a few hanging bats, a couple of (smiling) Frankenstein window decals, and a big spider web with a big spider!
And yes, of course I said we can get more gory next year, (not that I really wanted to. ;-)).
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1-1/2 cups confectioners sugar
- 1-1/4 cup pumpkin purée
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup almond meal
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1-1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon allspice
- A drop of orange food coloring if desired
- 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup sliced almonds
- Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the butter with the powdered sugar. Mix for about a minute or so, until it's a bit lighter and very smooth.
- Add in the pumpkin, vanilla, almond meal, salt, and spices. Mix until smooth. At this point, you can add a tiny bit of orange food coloring if desired. (I used about a very small bit for the cookies in the images you see here, just to brighten them slightly.)
- Fold in the flour and mix only until it's evenly incorporated.
- Shape dough into approximately 1-1/2 tablespoon-sized balls. Gently roll each one between the palms of your hands to create a smooth, even surface. Place them on one of the prepared baking sheets as you go, fairly close together. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the cookie batter balls are firm, at least 3 hours, and ideally overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Remove the the baking sheet from the refrigerator and then use the back of a small knife to make several vertical lines in around each ball, all coming together at the top center. Add them to the other prepared baking sheet as you go, being sure there's about an inch between each one.
- Bake in the preheated 350 degree F oven until bottoms are slightly golden and the cookies are solid, about 15 minutes.
- While the cookies are still quite warm, insert a few of the sliced almonds to the top of each "pumpkin," where the lines meet, to form the "stem." Try to find slices with the almond skin for the outsides of the stems.
- Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets.