Halloween might be over for this year, but it is sure to come back. So, here is the first part of this year’s Halloween food preparation. Come in and be spooked …
This year’s Halloween buffet contribution started out as a little challenge: My boyfriend mentioned that we hadn’t made our favorite chocolate cream recipe in a while. So what we were going to make was solved. Only question that remained was: How to turn that into something Halloweeny.
Thinking back, my very first Halloween buffet contribution way back was also chocolate cream: I turned it into something Jack’o’Lantern-style:
I still like this idea. It is quick and easy and still looks nice. But I’ve since evolved somewhat in the art of Halloween food making and improved both my skills and my kitchen supplies. So I have more options now and thought I’d go for something more challenging.
I’d seen a YouTube video where two girls made a chocolate cake with tombstones and pumpkins. I liked the idea of turning this into a cemetery and decided to do the same.
When I googled this idea, I found that there are actually a lot of cool variations of chocolate pudding, chocolate cream, chocolate cake… dressed up as a wonderfully creepy graveyard. So here is mine …
Since they need time to solidify, it is good to make the bones first.
It was quite a coincidence that I ended up using this mold. I’d seen these cool Graveyard Nutella Brownies using it and thought about ordering the mold for my chocolate cream graveyard. But I was afraid it would not arrive in time so I decided against it. But when I stopped by our local baking supply store some days later to get some eatable eyes, first thing I saw was a whole basket full of these molds and they weren’t even expensive. I thought that was Kismet and got one.
Melt white chocolate or candy melts on low temperature. Unfortunately, the instructions on the packaging don’t say how much chocolate you need. I melted a chocolate bar of 100 g and used up about 75 g.
Which gives us another good reason to make the bones first: You can later use up any leftover chocolate in the chocolate cream.
Fill the melted chocolate into a piping bag.
Tip: If you don’t have anyone at hand who can hold the bag for you, put it into a high glass like this:
Cut off the tip of the piping bag (make sure to make only a small hole. That gives you more control.)
Fill the mold with the melted chocolate.
And put in the fridge for a few hours until it solidifies.
The sensible second step is to make the tombstone cookies.
Use any cut-out cookie dough of your choice. I used this great Butter Cookies recipe.
Cut out a couple of tombstones. If you don’t have a tombstone cookie cutter (I didn’t), just use a knife. It is really quick and easy and I think it looks even better if they are at times a bit uneven and don’t all have the same sizes.
I also made one cross. Of course you can do more, if you like.
Since I had a lot of dough left, I decided to try out my Halloween cookie cutters that I’d found in last year’s after-Halloween sale.
Bake the cookies and let them cool down on the baking tray before you move them. Otherwise they might break.
The Chocolate Cream
For a dessert for about 10 people, you’ll need:
300 g chocolate
500 ml whipping cream
6 egg whites
I love this recipe because it is yummy, super simple, and quick to prepare. I’ve tried several chocolate cream recipes before I found this one. What I also love is that it has only three ingredients. I’ve found that the recipes with the fewest ingredients are often the best ones.
First, melt the chocolate on low temperature.
While you’re at it, dip the bottom of the cookies into the melted chocolate. Use a toothpick or something similar to write “RIP” on them.
Put the cookies on a plate to cool down. Dipping the bottom into chocolate is important because you’ll be sticking them into chocolate cream. This way, they won’t soak.
Whip the cream and carefully mix it under the chocolate with a spoon.
Whip the egg whites and carefully stir them in as well. Make sure to add the egg whites last. This makes the cream really fluffy.
I like to mix everything in the bowl I melted the chocolate in. It is easiest to get a smooth mix. Also, mixing is always messy and since the bowl you’ll be serving it in shouldn’t look messy, it is best to mix it somewhere else.
Fill the cream into a flat bowl. It doesn’t matter whether it’s angular, oval, or round. You can also use little bowls and give one to each person.
Preparing the Decoration
Now the preparation for the decoration begins.
For the cemetery soil, you’ll need Oreo-style cookies. (I got the idea from the same source as the tombstone cookies: R.I.P. Oreo Cream for Halloween. Really cool!)
I used up 3 packs of 5 cookies each. Crush them a little bit with a rolling-pin. Don’t crash them too much. It looks good to have some bigger crumbs in between and the white gives the “dirt” a really three-dimensional look.
Next, fetch the bones from the fridge and work them out of the mold. Be sure not to touch them for too long. They will melt in your hands.
Arrange everything and you’re ready to go.
First, distribute the tombstones and crosses in any way you like.
Scatter the cemetery soil.
Distribute the bones …
Save some finer crumbs and scatter them over the bones. After all, they’ve been in the dirt, right? 😉
Et voilà! A very yummy and fun to look at Halloween graveyard chocolate cream … A bit of a longish title, yes, but it looks really cool!