Recipe/Tutorial: Bride of Betelgeuse Severed Finger Cookies, inspired by Beetlejuice

Transparent Beetlejuice image by taintless-wings on Tumblr!

Aw yeah, it’s SPOOK MONTH! Time for dancing pumpkin videos and skull accessories. This year I’m celebrating October with a double whammy Food ‘n’ Flix and Fandom Foodies recipe.

You may remember Food ‘n’ Flix from my Frida entry. Basically, a movie is chosen every month and bloggers and food enthusiasts create recipes based on it. Check out the website for a more in depth explanation. For details on how to participate, head over to the lovely host of October’s flick, Kahakai Kitchen! As you’ve probably figured out, this month’s film is Beetlejuice.

It doesn’t stop there, because this month’s Fandom Foodies theme is Tim Burton! We’re calling it Burtoween, and it’s hosted over at Witchy Kitchen. Go there to find out how to participate, and remember to throw the #Burtoween hash tag in there so we can see what you’ve made!

I hadn’t seen Beetlejuice in over a decade. Aside from some sentient prawn bowls and a strange musical interlude, I didn’t remember a lot. Imagine my surprise when I realized that Betelgeuse himself doesn’t even appear until about halfway through the film. Since I really enjoyed Adam and Barbara, I was actually fine with that. I’m also a pretty big fan of Lydia. I hadn’t seen the movie in a while, but I had seen the cartoon, which gave Lydia a special place in the dark room that is my heart.

Beetlejuice is surprisingly food sparse. Aside from an early Zagnut bar cameo and the aforementioned prawns, there wasn’t a whole lot of edible goodness. Making things look appetizing wasn’t exactly a priority for Burton, for obvious reasons.

I was a little stumped in terms of recipe ideas until we reached nearly the end of the movie, where Betelgeuse attempts to marry Lydia (not cool, bro, she’s still in high school!). When asked to present a ring, he whips out one from an unnamed ex… with a finger still attached.

We feel you, Lydia.

This brings up a lot of questions. Who’s the lady, Beetlejuice? More importantly, did she give that finger up willingly? I have my doubts.

I decided to bake up a small arsenal of replacement fingers for this unfortunate mystery gal, with a bonus manicure to make her feel extra sassy. Any dead ex-wife of Betelgeuse is bound to need a pick-me-up.

Bride of Betelgeuse’s Severed Finger Cookies

DOUGH (adapted from Taste of Home)
100g (1 cup) powdered sugar
100g (1 stick) butter
180g (1 1/2 cups) flour, sifted
1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 pinch salt
1 pinch nutmeg
1 tsp lemon extract OR 1/2 lemon’s worth very finely chopped zest
1/2 vanilla bean, scraped OR 1 tsp vanilla extract


Slivered almonds
Red jelly of your choice
Marzipan or fondant
Black and yellow food colorings
Powered gold food coloring
Edible glitter and/or pearl luster dust
Clear extract or liquor, for painting

1. Line a cookie sheet with parchment and preheat your oven to 175°C/350°F. In a mixing bowl, beat the powdered sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add in the yolk, nutmeg, lemon flavoring and vanilla and mix to combine.
2. Stir the salt and baking powder into the sifted flower and add it to the butter mix. Mix until the dough just comes together into a ball. Split the ball of dough into thirds, roll them round and then flatten them just a bit. Use a knife to cut them into 6 pieces each, so you’re left with 18 pieces of dough. Sort out 18 nicely shaped almond slices for fingernails. Now begin forming the fingers!

A Roll the pieces into tubes with rounded ends. The tubes should be thinner than you want the fingers to turn out, as they will expand.
B Flatten and indent one side with your finger.
Adhere an almond slice to the other end of the shape using a dab of jelly and press it down firmly.
D Finally, use a knife to make several small indentations where the joints would be.
E Add a small amount of jelly into the indentation at the bottom of each finger.

3. Arrange the cookies on the baking sheet with 2″ between each finger cookie, then place the cookies in the freezer for 20 minutes.
4. Bake for 18-25 minutes, or until firmed up and slightly browned on the underside. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
5. Using a small paint brush and some black food coloring, paint stripes onto the almond slices to give the appearance of a Beetlejuice style manicure.
6. Grab your fondant. Pinch off a chunk of fondant and dye it yellow. Now, roll it out thinly and cut it into thin strips, 1/4″ or smaller in width. Drape these strips over each finger as a ring band, adhered with a bit of water. Mix about half a teaspoon of powdered gold coloring with a few drops of extract or liquor until you’ve made a nice paint. Use this to paint the bands.

7. Pinch off 18 pea-sized pieces of fondant and roll them into balls. Brush the balls VERY lightly with water, then roll them in edible glitter and/or pearl dust. Allow them to set for 5 minutes before adhering each one onto the ring band with another dab of water. Allow to set for a few minutes, and once it’s stuck on well you’re ready to serve!

This is a very basic vanilla cookie recipe, but the nutmeg and lemon add some kick. I’m sure they’d be delicious with some almond extract instead of lemon zest, as well. Serving them with a side of red jelly for dipping seems like a good way to go, as well!

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  1. Deb in Hawaii says:

    Your cookies are fabulous! The perfect thing for the movie and I love how realistic they look–those rings and the severed ends!
    And yes, Lydia is the best. 😉

    Thanks for taking part in Food ‘N Flix this month!

  2. Shaheen says:

    I agree with Eelyne, these are the best severed fingers i’ve seen in a very long time. These are so cool and I appreciate the step by step. I adore how you even painted the nails stripey. Look forward to seeing what you come up with for Burnt

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