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Halloween Treats

Halloween is almost here. I never really liked Halloween, but with my son Lucas that has changed. Now I can’t wait to dress him up and take him trick or treating. I am not sure how much he will understand it (he is 18 months) but for sure he will enjoy all the treats he can get. 
I have been thinking of a few treats for him and to give out to our neighbors. I will still have my pile of store-bought candies for the children I don’t know, homemade staff would be weird right? 
I made chocolate cat cookies. All kids like anything chocolate. I also made little meringue ghosts for the older kids. Both things are really good and are fun activities to make with the kids, specially the cookies. 
This Saturday we are going apple picking and I am hoping to get a nice size pumpkin. It will be fun to hand carve it and see if we can come up with a nice Jack-o’-lantern. I am sure it will be ugly since carving is not my thing, but hey,  it’s Halloween after all. 
For the chocolate cookies:
Recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart 
1 1/2 cup flour, plus more for 
rolling and cutting out dough
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
Preheat the oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa and salt, set aside. In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, beat in the egg. On low speed, mix in flour mixture. Divide dough in half and form into two disk, each about 3/4 inch thick. Wrap disk in plastic, chill until firm, at least 45 minutes and up to 2 days. On a lightly floured sheet of waxed paper, using a floured rolling pin, roll dough 1/2 inch thick. (If dough becomes too soft to work with, refrigerate for a few minutes.) Using 2 to 3-inch Halloween cookie cutters, cut out shapes, dipping cutters in flour as necessary to prevent sticking, place on a baking sheet, spacing them 1 inch apart. Bake until is dry to the touch, 10 to 15 minutes. Cool cookies 1 to 2 minutes on baking sheet before transfer to a cool rack to cool completely .    
For the meringue ghosts:
3/4 cup sugar
2 egg whites, room temperature
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
pinch of salt
chocolate frosting fo decorate
Preheat the oven to 200 F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. In a electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment on medium speed, beat the egg whites and salt until frothy, about 1 minute. Add the cream of tartar and the vanilla. Gradually add the sugar, one tablespoon at a time. Increase the speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form. Transfer the meringue to a pastry bag fitted 1/2-inch round tip. Pipe the ghost into the prepared baking sheets. I held the bag upright and squeeze the meringue, making a wide base then a smaller center and then a tip. Bake the meringues ghosts for one hour. Turn off the oven but let the meringues dry inside the oven with door closed for another hour. 
Let them cool completely before decorating it.

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