Buttery jam-filled thumbprint cookies from the 1980 game Hunt the Wumpus.
Greetz to the old schoolerz.
Hunt the Wumpus started out as a text-based computer game created in the early 1970s. My brother — who suggested this cookie — and I played the TI-99/4A version, which by 1980 had graphics and a grid layout.
In this game, you walk through a network of caves, looking for the Wumpus. Three red spots in a row meant the Wumpus was one circle away. Killing the Wumpus meant you had to fire an arrow in its direction, but guess wrong and you were eaten.
When you were eaten by the Wumpus, the evil grin of the Wumpus popped up on the monitor. It was a little scary when I was younger.
These cookies are a tribute to this fine piece of entertainment. The recipe is based off thumbprint cookies, with the design coming from the blue grid of the game.
1/2 cup cup butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Start off by mixing the softened butter and sugar until creamy.
Add in the egg and vanilla and mix until everything is well blended.
Add in the flour and stir things up.
In a bowl, pour in the blue sprinkles. Form a ball out of about a tablespoon of dough and drop into the bowl. Roll around in blue sprinkles until you have a good coating. You’ll need a lot of sprinkles, I had to refill the bowl o’ sprinkles every four balls or so.
After all the balls are well coated, it’s time for the thumbprint part!
Smush the middle of the cookie with your thumb.You don’t want the indentation in the ball of dough to go to the bottom of the cookie, but you want to make a good mark.
Add a 1/4 teaspoon of jelly to the center of the cookie. You don’t want too add too much, or else the jelly will overrun the cookie.
Once all the cookies are jelly-filled, pop in the oven for about 10 minutes. This is a cookie you don’t want to brown. If you’re unsure when to pull them, poke them with your finger and see if they’re firm. You can also pick one up and check to see if the bottoms are golden brown. If they are, it’s time to take them out.
Makes about a dozen cookies.