The creators of Coraline and Paranorman are at it again with another 3D stop motion fantasy adventure. This time, an orphaned boy raised by underground trash collecting inventors (or, trolls wearing boxes) faces an evil exterminator to save his friends in The BoxTrolls, based on the book, Here Be Monsters! by Alan Snow. Please watch the trailers. They are wickedly funny. You’ll recognize the characters shown here with The BoxTrolls cookies.
And check out this Featurette to learn how two voice actors created the fascinating “language” of the BoxTrolls.
Anyone remember my ParaNorman cupcakes and cookies? When Focus Features asked me to come up with another treat for The BoxTrolls, I happily accepted. I’ve a weakness for films for (older) children that eschew the light and airy in favor of a depth that better matches inside a kid’s chaotic head. A touch of darkness often adds a sort of richness, especially when tempered by wit, wry humor, and silliness. And The BoxTrolls promises all these things.
And so, let’s get to putting some BoxTroll heads on a stick. You can just make the cookies, and decorate them as simply or as detailed as you like. But I’ve also added how-tos for making their boxes. Match the movie characters, or, create your own BoxTrolls with their own unique outfits.
how to make BoxTroll cookies, an underground treat
PART 1: THE COOKIES
You will need:*
circle cookie cutter (2 1/2- inches)
food coloring (black and green)
disposable decorating bags
size “3” decorating tip
black edible writer
*Find the cookie cutter, lollipop sticks (8-inch sticks used here), 12-inch disposable decorating bags, coupler, tip, candy eyes, sprinkles and writer in the craft store. For food coloring, I suggest Americolor Soft Gel Pastes (Super Black and Leaf Green), found in specialty stores and online. Find cookie decorating supplies HERE.
step one: make the cookies on a stick. Prepare cookie dough according to the recipe, chill, roll 3/8-inch thick and cut out your circles. Carefully insert a stick into each circle, making sure the stick doesn’t break through the top or bottom of the dough. Arrange on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake according to the recipe. Let cool completely.
step two: make your icing. Prepare royal icing according to the recipe. Take 1 to 1 1/2 cups of icing, depending on how many cookies you are making, and mix in your coloring. For just the right shade of troll, I mixed in one drop of black and two drops of green. Assemble a decorating bag with the coupler and the tip, fill with 1/2 cup of the tinted icing and close tightly with a rubber band. Thin the remaining icing by slowly adding drops of water and stirring until the right flooding consistency. If you scoop and overturn a spoonful, the icing should fold into itself and even out in 10 seconds. Fill an empty decorating bag with the thinned icing and close tightly with a rubber band.
step three: decorate your cookies. Use the thicker icing to outline the cookies as shown. Let set 15 minutes. Snip 1/4-inch from the tip of the thinned icing. Pipe back and forth to fill the outlines with icing. Let the icing dry very well, several hours at least, but preferably overnight.
To decorate, use the thicker icing to pipe dots on the back of two candy eyes and adhere to the cookie. Do the same to adhere a pink confetti sprinkle for the nose. With the black writer, draw lines around the eyes and for the mouth. If you like, break up a white confetti sprinkle and use dabs of icing to adhere to the cookie for teeth. Pipe a bit of hair on top with the thicker icing. Let the cookies dry well before handling, and add a box (see below) if you prefer.
NOTE: I also prepared black, brown and peach icing to make an Eggs cookie pop. I piped the outline with black, filled in with peach and brown, added candy eyes immediately and piped his nose and mouth with the black icing.
PART 2: OPTIONAL (but awesome) BOX OUTFITS
You will need:
cereal boxes or comparable cardboard
glue or double-sided tape
To make the box outfits, first print out this template. Cut out the figure, and trace on an opened-up cereal box, and cut out.
Using the needle, poke holes where indicated in the template (hold the template over the box if needed and push the needle through both). Wiggle the needle a bit to widen the hole. Fold where indicated on the template to form a box.
Glue the box at the flaps to close, or simply tape closed. Check the holes with a lollipop stick to be sure the cookie pops will fit snugly, and widen the holes with a pencil or scissors tip if needed. Decorate the box with markers. Carefully slide the box onto the cookie pop through the holes.