Are these skull cookies not the scariest things you've ever seen? (Well, outside of Spam that is.) They're a little bit of work to make but totally worth it when someone opens your cookie jar, the blood drains from their face, they let out a blood-curdling scream and they run. Leaving all the cookies for you to eat.

Scary Skull Cookies

 

Vanilla Dough

2 cups all-purpose flour

½ tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

8 tbsp butter (one stick), softened

1 cup sugar

1 egg

1 ½ tsp vanilla extract

Chocolate Dough

1 cup all-purpose flour

½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

½ tsp baking soda

¼ tsp baking powder

1/8 tsp salt

8 tbsp butter (one stick), softened

1/2 cup granulated sugar

½ cup brown sugar

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla extract

To make the vanilla dough, mix the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl and set aside.

In another bowl beat the butter and sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla. On low speed, add the flour mixture just until incorporated. Form the dough into a log about 2 inches in diameter and set aside.

To make the chocolate dough, mix the flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt in a bowl and set aside.

In another bowl beat the butter and both sugars with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy but not fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes. Beat in the egg and vanilla. On low speed, add the flour mixture just until incorporated. Form the dough into a log the same length as the vanilla log and set aside. If the dough is too sticky, put it in the freezer to firm up.

To shape the skulls, reshape each log of dough so that it is skull shaped rather than round. Make one side narrow for the jaw and the other wide for the cranium. Wrap and refrigerate the chocolate dough. Form features in the vanilla dough, using the handle of a wooden spoon to poke holes for the eyes through the entire length of the log. Form the nose with a skewer, poking two holes for nostrils. Form the mouth by inserting a narrow table knife and wiggling it back and forth gently to lengthen and widen the opening. Don’t try for perfection: irregular holes make the best and weirdest skulls. Wrap and refrigerate the vanilla dough. Chill both doughs at least two hours, preferably overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350. Cut the chocolate dough into 1/8 inch slices and place then 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Cut the vanilla dough into 1/8 inch slices and place one slice on top of each chocolate slice. Bake until pale golden at the edges, about 12 minutes.

Let the cookies firm up a little before moving them then let them cool completely before storing them. They’ll last about a week.