With Halloween just days away, this week’s Fab or Flub is dedicated to the procrastinating party planners who have yet to decide what to serve Friday.
Plucked from Target’s Halloween section, the Witch Fingers Breadstick Kit retails for $5 and is a spooky interpretation of the classic breadstick and marinara combo. How spooky you ask? The breadsticks look like actual witch fingers, crusty fingernails included.
If you’ve read any of my past holiday-themed DIYs, you know I’m a fan of treats that look like you put a lot more time and effort into them than you actually did. With the Witch Fingers Breadstick Kit in hand, I set out to see just how easy it might be for someone in a pinch for time to make these creepy treats.
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Excited to try out the kit, I immediately opened it and began unloading its contents, which included four packages of ingredients — breadstick mix, marshmallows, salt and marinara mix. The only other ingredients the kit listed that I’d need were water and a small can of tomato sauce. Since I didn’t have to go out and buy anything else, I was already pretty pleased.
The first step in the baking process said to preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Easy. Next, the instructions said that I should add water to the breadstick mix in a large mixing bowl until I was left with a lump of dough. Overall, things seemed to be going well.
Then I came to the third step and the word “knead” — one I hadn’t often encountered in my cooking experiences. Turns out I would need to knead my dough for an unspecified amount of time before proceeding. I wasn’t sure if I even knew how to knead dough correctly and began to assume that these breadsticks were well out of my own cooking capabilities. Fortunately, all it took was a quick “how to knead” Goggle search, and I was back on my way.
After using a mixer for five minutes on the dough, I began forming the witch fingers. The dough was a bit challenging to work with, but eventually I was able to form what I felt looked like fingers.
I brushed them with butter and salted them, and I even took a knife and made indentions to give the appearance of knuckles. After that, I popped them in the oven, as instructed, for five minutes. Next, I took them back out and smashed a miniature marshmallow into the tip of each one (the fingernail), then popped them back in to bake for another five minutes.
That gave me time to quickly throw the marinara together. This required no effort whatsoever: I just warmed up a small can of tomato sauce on the stove top and added in the marinara seasoning mix. By then, it was time to take out the breadsticks and sample the results.
Fab or flub?
Flab! After about an hour of prepping, baking and trying the finished product, I ended up with mixed feelings about Target’s Witch Fingers Breadsticks.
I felt like the kit’s instructions were written plainly enough that even challenged cooks could follow along (unless they get hung up on the whole idea of kneading, like I did). I also think that most people will appreciate the convenience of a kit that supplies most all of the ingredients needed. However, the whole process seemed time consuming.
For those looking for a quick solution that requires minimal effort, this is definitely not it. In total, I spent about 45 minutes prepping and cooking. And while that might not seem like such a big deal, it is important to note that there are similar recipes online that use pre-made dough and require less than half the time to prepare.
I also think with pre-made dough you might have a better chance at getting a finished product that looks more like fingers and less like slugs (in my case).
So, then it was time for the real test, the taste test. Recruiting my boyfriend and my brother, I had them each sample a breadstick, first sans marinara, then with. And guess what: The breadsticks were a hit.
Both guys liked the way they tasted, describing them as having a sweetlike quality that resembled a King’s Hawaiian roll.
I did not have high expectations for the taste, based on the way the breadsticks ended up looking, so this was a pleasant surprise. Unfortunately, the marinara did not score so high in the taste department. Both guys felt like the breadsticks would have paired better with a store-bought marinara. I had to agree.
Overall, I think the kit would be great for families looking for a fun Halloween activity to do together. The results might not be the prettiest, but there’s no doubt that kids will have fun getting their hands dirty and eating the finished product.
For those looking for a cheap and quick Halloween treat to serve at a party, I think there are other, better versions out there.
Either way, don’t forget to buy the marinara.