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Hairy whoopie pie spiders
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These deliciously soft chocolate cookies are sandwiched together with buttercream, then given a spooky twist by adding a hairy back, legs and eyes.
100g unsalted butter, softened
125g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
175g self-raising flour
40g cocoa powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
150g natural yogurt
75ml whole milk
150g unsalted butter, softened
250g icing sugar, sifted
few drops food colouring, plus extra to decorate
50g desiccated coconut
2 tbsp apricot jam, gently warmed
2 packs strawberry laces, rowntree’s randoms rip’ems or similar sweets
38g tube smarties or similar sweets
1 Preheat the oven to 180 ̊C, gas mark 4. Line 3 large baking sheets with baking parchment. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, then beat in the egg and vanilla extract. Sieve in the flour, cocoa and bicarbonate of soda, then add the yogurt and milk; beat together to a thick batter. Drop heaped teaspoonfuls onto the baking sheets, spacing them to allow for a little spreading. Bake for 15 minutes (you may need to do this in batches), then cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
2. For the filling, beat the butter with electric beaters, until light and fluffy. Beat the icing sugar in gradually, then beat in a few drops of food colouring. Spoon into a piping bag and pipe onto the flat side of half of the pies (or, spread it on with a spoon). Sandwich another pie-half on top.
3. To decorate the whoopie pies, put the coconut in a resealable freezer bag. Add a drop or two of food colouring, seal the bag and shake well. Using a pastry brush, spread a thin layer of the warmed jam over the pies, then sprinkle on the coconut. For the spiders’ legs, cut the strawberry laces into pieces and stick them into the filling. Finally, add eyes, using Smarties.
Typical values per serving: