I’m super excited to announce a brand new series that I am participating for the month of October called, “31 Days of Homemade Halloween.”
I’ve teamed up with 5 like-minded mom bloggers (scroll to the bottom of the post for more info) and each day in October we’ll share a Halloween-y/Fall-themed post; whether it be recipes, Halloween/fall crafts, beauty products, etc. I’m really excited about it. I’ve already seen some photos and you guys are seriously in for a treat (no tricks, I promise!).
I’m kicking my portion of the series off with Mini Ghost Peeps! Peeps you buy at the store contain nasty GM-laden ingredients like corn syrup, artificial colorings and preservatives. Plus, let’s face it, they taste like straight up barf. Yuck. Gives me a stomachache just thinking about it.
These little mini ghost peeps not only look fabulous but they taste great too. No fake flavor, just real, sugary yummy-ness. I usually try and cook with alternative sugars that have more nutrients to them (like this and this) but for the sake of all Halloween things, I tried to keep the marshmallow flavor as normal as possible (without all the fake stuff).
I know Halloween is supposed to be about the goblins, ghouls and all scary things but I can’t help myself and say “awwww” when I look at these little guys. They’re so cute for ghosts, don’t you think? I totally had my creative juices flowing when I was making them and I am so excited to share them with you!
These would make great little treats at a Halloween party by themselves or you could make little “trick or treat” gift bags.
There are a few steps to the process, so make sure you read the complete directions before you go about making them.
- Mini cookie cutters (where to buy)
- candy thermometer (where to buy)
- stand mixer (where to buy) or hand mixer (where to buy)
- food processor for homemade "powdered" sugar
- non-bleached parchment paper
- 2 ½ tsp unflavored grass-fed gelatin (where to buy)
- ⅓ cup cold filtered water plus ¼ cup filtered water
- ¾ cup organic cane sugar (where to buy)
- 1 Tbl vanilla extract
- ½ cup homemade powdered sugar (recipe and directions below)
- 1 Tbl cocoa powder (where to buy)
- ½ - 1 tsp filtered water
- butter or coconut oil to smear on the bottom of a pan so the parchment paper sticks
- In a sauce pan, on medium heat, add ⅓ cup water, sugar, and vanilla; stir continuously until the sugar has dissolved
- Place your candy thermometer in your sauce pan and wait until the mixture reaches the "softball" stage (235ºF)
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl (if you're using a stand mixer, the bowl that comes with it works perfectly) add gelatin and ¼ cup water; let stand
- Once your sugary syrup has reached the softball stage, slowly pour the mixture into the bowl while blending on low speed. Work quickly because the syrup will harden.
- Once you've added all the syrup, blend on high until the mixture becomes marshmallow fluff (make sure to taste test the deliciousness)
- Pour/scoop marshmallow fluff into your parchment lined pan and lightly sprinkle the "powdered" sugar on top
- Place in the refrigerator for a few hours to let it set
- Grab a plate and sprinkle remaining powdered sugar on it -- this will be your sugar coating station
- Grab your mini ghost cookie cutter and "cut" marshmallow. You may have to move it back and forth so it breaks away from the rest of the marshmallow
- Once you have released the ghost from the main marshmallow, take your finger and push the ghost through. It's best to push the side that already has sugar on it (the top) so you minimize the stickiness.
- Coat the marshmallow thoroughly and place to the side; repeat until marshmallow has been exhausted.
- Take one cup of organic cane sugar and 1 Tbl arrowroot powder and blend in a food processor. I blended mine for about 5-7 minutes. Since we're making peeps, we don't necessarily want a powdered sugar -- just a lightly blended sugar so the crystals become small.
If you want to make mini tombstone peeps, reserve half of the marshmallow for it.
To get the “dirty” look effect, place a tiny bit of cocoa powder on your finger and lightly dab the front side of the tomb. Smear it around so the coating is even. If you are a little heavy in one spot, it may be harder to even out the tone of the tomb.
To Make Eyes & Write R.I.P. on Tombstones
In order to make eyes and a mouth for your ghost peeps, you’re going to need to make a cocoa paste. In a separate little dish, place 1/2 tablespoon cocoa powder and slowly add water, 1/4 teaspoon at a time, using a toothpick to mix it around.
You want the paste to be somewhat thick but if you have places that are a little watery it’s okay. The watery portion of the cocoa powder is great for writing the R.I.P on the tombstones since the paste is too thick.
Take a toothpick and pick up a little bit of cocoa powder and dab on the eyes and mouth for the ghost.
To write R.I.P., use the watery portion and dip the toothpick in. You almost want it to look like a little “bubble” at the end of the toothpick. Very slowly and gently, make your first letter. You will not be able to make the complete ‘R’ without “refilling” your toothpick multiple times. The slower the better.
When it’s watery, the mixture sort of bleeds out into the peep. Use this to your advantage while you are making your letters. You may have a couple that sort of look like the letters are blended together but if anyone asks you can just say it’s a really “old” tombstone.