Hallowe’en. The night before we remember those who have passed on and reflect on what happened in our lives the past year.
It is during this time, according to ancient Celtic lore, that the veil that separates the worlds of the living and the dead is at its thinnest. Through this veil, the spirits enter our world, along with faeries, demons and witches. To appease these otherworldly beings and avoid the risk of being harmed, the Celts left offerings of soul cakes and cider outside their doors. This potentially evolved into the modern day tradition of trick-or-treating during Hallow’s Eve.
I’m taking after the Dutch and offering koekies or ‘little cakes’ for tonight’s festivities. Will be attempting as well to placate the souls of those who have dug deep into our past to unearth clues about the history of humanity. We never know. Perhaps buried deep within rocks, prehistoric insects might actually have more answers as to why they have changed little yet survived better than humans and will most likely be around long after we have stopped celebrating Hallowe’en.
Gil Grissom would be proud of me.
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart
Makes about 16 cookies
|2 cups||all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling|
|1/2 tsp||baking powder|
|1/2 cup||unsalted butter, softened|
|1 tsp||vanilla extract|
In large bowl, whisk flour and baking powder. Set aside.
In another large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Stir in egg and vanilla. Gradually add flour mixture and beat until combined. Flatten into a disk and wrap in cling wrap. Chill until completely firm. Dough can be frozen up to three months.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Line baking sheets with baking paper. Remove dough from the fridge and let stand on the counter for 5 minutes. With a tablespoon, measure 1 or 2 tablespoons of dough (depending on how big the plastic bugs are) and form into balls. Flatten slightly with the palm of your hand. Position a plastic bug on the center of the disk and with the bottom of a drinking glass, press down gently. Carefully remove the plastic bug and inspect the imprint. Redo if the imprint is not clear enough. Repeat with other dough balls, using different bugs for variety.
Bake until edges are golden, 10 to 18 minutes (depending on size). Cool completely on wire racks.