I just have to make these cookies for Halloween this year! Aren't they great? The recipe sounds simple enough - if a bit time-consuming - they're just sugar cookies rolled and shaped with slivered almond 'finger nails'.
I was reading through the Reviews on Epicurious and found all sorts of great tips and variations - like adding chopped pistachios to make green witches' fingers or dipping the ends in red food dye so they look severed.
I can't wait to try them! What do you say, Juju - you with me? We'll have to remember to take some pictures to post.
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sliced almonds
2 tablepoons Icing Glue (see below)
Icing Glue Ingredients*
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon water
1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter until smooth and creamy.
2. Add the sugar, egg, and vanilla extract and mix well.
3. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt and beat until completely mixed.
4. Cover the dough and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
5. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
6. With your hands, roll a heaping tablespoon of dough into a finger shape for each cookie. If the dough gets sticky and hard to work with, put it back in the refrigerator for a little while. Place fingers on an ungreased cookie sheet about 3 inches apart.
7. Use a butter knife to make knuckle marks on the finger cookies. Slightly flatten the front of the finger to create a nail.
7a. Chill fingers in refrigerator for an additional 15 minutes before baking.**
8. Bake 20-25 minutes, until fingers are slightly golden. Remove from the oven and let cool. Meanwhile, prepare the Icing Glue. Mix together powdered sugar and water in a small bowl until the consistency is similar to that of a paste.
9. Attach almond slice fingernails to the tips of the fingers with Icing Glue. Let glue dry for about 30 minutes.
*One reviewer suggests using red jelly to attach the almonds instead of royal icing.
**Another reviewer tip - this keeps the fingers from spreading too much. All that butter needs to chill out!