Have you ever watched the movie The Nightmare Before Christmas? It came out when I was just a teenager and I loved it! It's a Tim Burton film that tells the story of the Pumpkin King, Jack Skellington, who comes from Halloween Town. He opens a portal to Christmas Town and decides to try and join in the festivities which has both comical and disastrous results! It's really a film that has withstood time as it's still a popular film today.
Since Jack Skillington is the Pumpkin King and is really the ruler of all of Halloween Town, I thought he would be the perfect figure to put on a cookie for my students Halloween party this year. I hoped my students would recognize him and set off making the cookies.
I used my standard sugar cookie recipe and cut out a bunch of circles. While I baked them I mixed up a batch of royal icing, divided it, and added black food coloring to one bowl and super white coloring to the other bowl. Once the cookies had cooled I covered them all in white royal icing. After letting that icing harden for 30 minutes I used the black icing to make the eyes and mouth. These cookies are very simple to make and because Jack is a little lopsided in the movie, you don't need to have a steady hand.
I thought the cookies were adorable and was really excited when both the students and many of the teachers recognized Jack Skellington. These cookies were a lot of fun to make and even more fun to eat with my students. They are perfect for Halloween.
For the Cookies:
- 2 ½ c. flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 sticks butter, softened
- 1 c. sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
For the Royal Icing:
- 4 c. powdered sugar
- 1 Tablespoon meringue powder
- 4-6 Tablespoons water
- Black and Super White food coloring
- In a medium mixing bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer beat the butter until smooth. Gradually add in the sugar and continue mixing on medium until fluffy.
- Add in the egg and vanilla and beat until mixed well.
- Place the mixer on low and add in the flour mixture, mixing until just blended.
- Knead the dough into a ball and flatten into a disc shape. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- On a lightly floured surface roll the dough to ¼ inch thick. Cut out 30 circles. Place the cookies on a baking sheet and bake for 7-8 minutes or until they no longer look wet on top.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 2 minutes on the cookie sheet before removing to a wire rack. Cool completely.
- To make the royal icing put the powdered sugar and meringue powder in a bowl. Add the water 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring well after each addition, until desired consistency is reached.
- Put ¾ of the frosting in one bowl and tint it super white. Tint the remaining ¼ of the frosting black.
- Cover the cookies with white icing. Allow to harden 30 minutes.
- Place the black icing in a piping bag or a zip top baggie. Pipe on two oval shaped black filled eyes on each cookie. Draw a small black smile on each and then put black lines through the smile. Allow the icing to harden for at least 12 hours.
Cookie Recipe Adapted from The Way the Cookie Crumbles