Chocolate Bunnies Cookie Tutorial

Chocolate Bunnies 2

I’ve always loved this cartoon, so I thought I’d make some Easter cookies in honor of the it.  Here’s how to make them:

You will need:

  • Your favorite sugar cookie recipe
  • Your favorite royal icing recipe in three colors – chocolate brown, white, and black
  • Bunny cookie cutter
  • Word balloon cookie cutter
  • Chocolate jimmies or brown sprinkles/nonpareils

When cutting out the bunny cookies, you will need to cut half of them with the cookie cutter turned upside down.  Then, take a small round crinkle cookie cutter, and cut off the ears on one set and cut off the bunny butt on the other set.  Bake as usual.

If you only have one word balloon cookie cutter, you will need to cut half of them with the cookie cutter turned upside down so the balloons can point to each rabbit.  I have the Word Balloon Cookie Cutter Set with word balloons facing right and left, so I didn’t need to do this.

After the cookies have cooled completely, you are ready to decorate.

Outline and flood the bunny cookies with the chocolate brown royal icing.

Flood

Once the cookies are dry, outline and flood the word balloon cookies with white royal icing.  Sorry.  I forgot to take a photo of this.

Next, add details to the bunny  cookies with piping consistency chocolate brown royal icing.  Add a tail to the bunnies that still have tails by flooding the tail area and sprinkling it with chocolate jimmies while it’s still wet.

Outline Crop

Add the bunnies’ eyes with white royal icing.  When that’s dry, add black eyeballs with the black royal icing.

Now, outline the word balloon cookies in piping consistency black royal icing and write “My butt hurts.” on one set and “What?” on the other set.

Give the cookies a little more time to dry and you are done.  Not only are these adorable, but they are funny too.

Chocolate Bunnies

 

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Sports Themed Baby Shower Cookies

Sports themed Baby Rattles

Sports-Themed Baby Rattle Cookies

One of my New Year’s resolutions is to post more of my baking projects on this website. This will require me to remember to take photos while I’m baking and decorating, organize my time more efficiently, and learn to take better pictures.  That’s a tall order for me, but here I go.  Baby steps.

So here’s my first post of 2016: Sports Themed Baby Shower Cookies.  These are not my original design. My customer sent me a photo of the cookies she wanted and asked me to include soccer cookies along with the baseball cookies, football cookies, and basketball cookies from her photo.  I tracked down the photo to Baking In Heels on Etsy.  Her cookies are  beautiful.

I used a baby rattle cookie cutter like this.  For the football cookies, I also used a football shaped cutter from this set. I combined the two cookie cutters to get the football shaped rattle using this tutorial.

I didn’t take any photos while baking and decorating this time, but cut me some slack, this New Year’s resolution is a work in progress.  Teeny, tiny baby steps.

To make these cookies, you will need:

  • baby rattle cookie cutter
  • football shaped cookie cutter
  • your favorite sugar cookie recipe
  • your favorite royal icing recipe
  • Americolor chocolate brown food color gel
  • Americolor bright white food color gel
  • Americolor super red food color gel
  • Americolor super black food color gel
  • Americolor orange food color gel
  • Food color marker ( I prefer a light color like yellow – see instructions)

Football Baby Rattle Cookie: Outline and flood the football shape in brown royal icing.  Let dry.  Outline and flood the handle in brown.  Let dry.  Outline and flood the shaft of the rattle in brown.  Let dry overnight.

Once dry, add the football detail in piping consistency white royal icing using a small round tip. I used a PME round 1.5 tip, my favorite decorating tip.  Then add the white bow.  Finished.

Basketball Baby Rattle Cookie: With a small round tip (I used the PME 1.5 tip again), pipe the black detail of the basketball with black piping consistency royal icing.  Let dry completely to avoid bleeding of black icing into orange icing.  Why do I mention this?  Let’s just say I may have learned the hard way.  And I truly want to save you the frustration. You’re welcome.

Once dry, carefully fill in the basketball with orange royal icing.  Let dry.  Outline and flood the handle of the rattle in orange.  Let dry.  Outline and flood the shaft of the rattle in orange.  Let dry overnight.

Now you can add the bow in black piping consistency royal icing.  Done.

Baseball Baby Rattle Cookie: Outline and flood the baseball shape in white royal icing.  Let dry.  Outline and flood the handle in white.  Let dry.  Outline and flood the shaft of the rattle in white.  Let dry overnight.

Once dry, use piping consistency red royal icing with a small round tip to pipe on the baseball details and the red bow.  Done.  This one is the easiest of the four.

Soccer Baby Rattle Cookie: This is the most challenging of the four cookies, but with my iPad, the Camera Lucida app, and this tutorial, you can draw the soccer ball on the cookie with a food color marker.

Next, fill in the black part of the soccer ball with black royal icing.  Once it is completely dry, fill in the white part of the soccer ball with white royal icing.  Let dry.  Now outline and flood the handle of the rattle in black royal icing.  Let dry.  Then outline and flood the shaft of the rattle in white royal icing.  Let dry overnight.

All that’s left to do is pipe on the bow with black piping consistency royal icing using a small round tip.

Your cookies are done!  Enjoy!

And now I am done with my first post of 2016.  And I’m well on my way to keeping my resolution.  Yay me!

 

Genie Lamp Cookie Tutorial

This was my largest single cookie order yet.  Two hundred genie lamp cookies, each individually bagged and tied with decorative twine. Maybe I’m slow, but I baked and piped and wrapped for three days straight and 3 days later, my right hand is still sore.

My customer’s daughter got the lead role in the local Aladdin Musical.  She would be playing the Genie.  Her mom said that it is customary for the family of the actor in a lead role to give something to the rest of the cast and crew.  So she ordered 200 Genie Lamp cookies.

Finished Cookie

Here’s how I made these cookies:

You will need:

  • Your favorite sugar cookie recipe
  • Your favorite royal icing recipe in three colors – gold, regal purple, and sky blue.
  • Genie lamp cookie cutter
  • Pearl dust
Outline and flood the cookie.

Outline and flood the cookie.

Outline the cookie in gold royal icing, then flood.  Let dry.

217 cookies flooded and ready to decorate.

217 cookies flooded and ready to decorate.

Here’s my table full of trays of flooded cookies ready to decorate.  I couldn’t even fit all of the trays on the table.

“Well, Mara, if the order was for 200 cookies, why did you make 217?”, you ask.  The answer is because I always make between 5% – 10% more cookies than the order calls for, especially if the shape is easily breakable.  Cookies break or maybe I make a boo boo that I just can’t fix.  This is my insurance.

“What do you do with the broken cookies and the cookies with the mistakes on them, Mara?”  I’m glad you asked.  I used to feed them to my husband and kids.  They used to fight over them.  But they’ve eaten so many mistakes these last few years that they are tired of them.  However, their hungry teenage friends are not tired of them.  Nor is my grandson tired of them.

Anyway, back to the tutorial.

Pipe on purple detail.

Pipe on purple detail. Then pipe on the gold swirlies.

My next step is to pipe on the purple base and lid.  Once dry, I piped on the swirls with piping consistency gold icing.

Pipe on blue detail.

Pipe on the blue knob.

In retrospect, I think it might have been better to add the blue knob before piped on the gold swirls.  But I guess it’s really six of one and half a dozen of the other.

Pipe on the final blue and purple detail.

Pipe on the final blue and purple details.

Once the blue knob was dry, I piped on the blue dots and the purple dot on top of the knob with piping consistency blue and purple icings.  Done.

Before I bagged these cookies, which took my daughter and I about 2 1/2 hours to do, I brushed each cookie with a little bit of pearl dust for that extra touch.  I do this with most of my cookies.

I’d like to thank my dedicated employees for their help in getting these large orders done in time.  Especially, my daughter, Hannah, chief of packaging, and my husband, Gary, who lists his second occupation on Facebook as “Chief Dishwasher”. Heeheehee!

Grocery Bag Cookie Tutorial (and a sad farewell to my local grocery store)

Every Friday, my daughter, Hannah, and I, go to the grocery store.  We almost always get a drink at Starbucks.  Occasionally, we’ll get a movie or two from Redbox.  Then we shop.

We laugh a lot.  She asks me to buy things and I say no.  Sometimes we argue.  It’s a ritual.  And when she’s busy with school, band, or her friends, and she doesn’t come with me, I’m sad.  It’s just not the same.

During this ritual, we’ve gotten to know some of the employees at our local store, and we look forward to seeing them every Friday.  They are always so friendly and helpful.  Even during the crazy Christmas frenzy, they always greeted us with a friendly word and a smile.

So I decided that I wanted to acknowledge these people for their kindness.  But they’re not allowed to accept gifts.  Lucky for me, however, they are allowed to accept cookies!

It was my daughter, Hannah, that suggested the grocery bag cookies.  So I looked through my massive selection of cookie cutters that I’ve been hoarding over the last few years and found the perfect cookie cutter – a popcorn cookie cutter from my Circus cookie cutter set.  Here’s how I made them:

Grocery Bag Cookies

Grocery Bag Cookies

Here’s what you need:

  1. Your favorite sugar cookie recipe
  2. Your favorite royal icing recipe in grocery-bag brown, tan, orange, green, yellow, and red.
  3. Popcorn cookie cutter (a rectangular cookie cutter would work too)
  4. Food color markers in black, brown, and red.

I started out by outlining and piping the actual bag in a grocery-bag brown royal icing.  I used warm brown and a teeny tiny drop of black to get the right shade of brown.  It looked pretty dark at first, but I added a little more warm brown and I got a color I was pretty happy with.

Outline and pipe the bag

Outline and pipe the bag.

The real dilemma now was what to put in the bag.  I googled grocery bag clip art and found some examples and that’s how I decided to put french bread, carrots, bananas, and ketchup in my bags.  But there are soooooo very many other options.

I decided to start with my tallest grocery item and fill in the rest in the space around it.  I piped on a loaf of french bread using just a touch of warm brown to get the color I was looking for.

Pipe on the bread

Pipe on the french bread.

I piped on a carrot next, in orange of course.

Pipe on the carrot

Pipe on the carrot.

Then I piped on the carrot greens using leaf green royal icing and the banana using lemon yellow royal icing.

Pipe on the carrot greens and the banana.

Pipe on the carrot greens and the banana.

Last, but not least, I piped on the ketchup bottle in red royal icing.

Pipe on the ketchup bottle

Pipe on the ketchup bottle.

The last thing to do was to add some details with the food color markers.  I used a fine point brown marker to add detail to the banana and the french bread.  I also used the brown marker to outline and add detail to the grocery bag.  I used a red food color marker to draw the Vons logo on the bag.  The black marker was used to add detail to the ketchup bottle.

Pipe on the details.

Pipe on the details.

Hannah and I brought the cookies in on Friday, our regular grocery shopping day.  We tried to schedule my visit before their evening rush.  We waited expectantly as they opened the box because we wanted to see their reactions.  I absolutely love seeing the expressions on my cookie recipients’ faces when they get the custom cookies that I have made especially for them.  That is absolutely the best part of this “job”.  The cookies were a hit.

The Vons chain of grocery stores was recently sold and many of them will be closing.  My store is one of the locations that will be closing.  Many of the employees will be staying on and working for the new company.  Some will be leaving or transferring to another store.  I wish each and every one of them a bright and happy future.

I hope the new company realizes what an asset these people are and treats them well. These people are the reason I have called the Laguna Niguel Vons “my grocery store”.

It’s A Bird! It’s A Plane! It’s A Cookie!

I made these cookies for a little boy on my grandson’s T-ball team.  Little boys love superheros, don’t they?  And Superman is the original.

Superman Cookies

I don’t have a Superman cookie cutter, so I found the logo online and printed it out in the size I needed.  Then I used a square cookie cutter to cut the dough.  Using the logo that I printed as I guide, I cut off one corner of the square.

I cut the yellow portion of the logo and then used that as a stencil to draw on the cookie with a yellow food color marker.  Then I piped on the yellow icing.  After that was dry, I piped on the red icing.  I wasn’t completely satisfied, so I decided to outline everything with black icing.  That made a huge difference.

Superman Cookie

My grandson, Connor, gave his seal of approval, but was quick to remind me that his favorite superhero is Spiderman.

Turkey and Pumpkin Pie Cookies for Thanksgiving – a tutorial

I absolutely love Thanksgiving.  It has all of the best parts of Christmas with none of the stress.

I’m not knocking Christmas.  It’s a beautiful holiday, but it has become so commercialized.  I often feel that if my house is not perfectly clean and decorated, I have failed.  If I haven’t purchased the perfect gift for everyone on my list, wrapped carefully and under the tree weeks before December 25th, I have failed.  If I haven’t baked a multitude of treats and packaged them up and sent them off to far away friends and family just hours before December 25th arrives and with absolutely no breakage, I have failed.  And I must confess that I am often at a loss as to what to give to some people, like my husband, or my oldest daughter, Stephanie.  My house is never perfectly clean and decorated.  And I am usually wrapping presents and helping Santa with the stockings until 3 a.m. on Christmas Eve.

But enough about Christmas.  Thanksgiving is tomorrow.  I will be spending a glorious day with my husband, my 4 children, my son-in-law, and my two grandchildren.  There is nothing I’d rather do.

I made these Thanksgiving Cookies for my daughter.  She signed up to bring cookies to her Wind Ensemble class on the Friday before Thanksgiving break.  Her classmates encouraged her to sign up because I am famous for my cookies with the band kids at Dana Hills High School.  I made extras for the teachers, my friends, and my family.

Roasted Turkey Platter Cookies and Pumpkin Pie Cookies

Roasted Turkey Platter Cookies and Pumpkin Pie Cookies

Pumpkin Pie Cookie Tutorial

You will need:

  1. Your favorite sugar cookie recipe
  2. Your favorite royal icing in pumpkin, crust, and white colors
  3. Icing tips and pastry bags or icing bottles

These cookies are inspired by my favorite cookie blogger, Sweet Sugarbelle, at http://www.sweetsugarbelle.com/2013/09/mini-pumpkin-pie-slice-cookies/.

Instead of mini cookies, I wanted full size cookies, so I used an 8 inch cake pan to make an impression in the dough, then I used a pizza cutter to cut the circle and the “slices of pie”.  I cut 8 “slices” out of each circle.

After baking the cookies and letting them cool, outline and flood them with pumpkin-colored royal icing. I followed Sugarbelle’s instructions and used equal parts of tulip red and egg yellow with a little warm brown.  The color was perfect.

Outline and flood the pumpkin pie "filling".

Outline and flood the pumpkin pie “filling”.

Once the pumpkin icing is dry, pipe on the “crust”  with stiff consistency crust-colored icing, using a #101 tip with the thin side up, starting at one end and working your way to other end and piping in a continuous “M” shape.  Sugarbelle suggests using ivory with a little warm brown.

Pipe on the crust with a #101 tip.

Pipe on the crust with a #101 tip.

Finally, use a star tip to pipe stiff consistency white icing onto the cookie for the whipped cream.  I used a #18 tip.

Pipe on the "whipped cream" with a #18 tip.

Pipe on the “whipped cream” with a #18 tip.

Your cookie is done.  Yum!

Roasted Turkey Platter Cookie Tutorial

You will need:

  1. Your favorite sugar cookie recipe.
  2. Your favorite royal icing in a brown turkey color, leaf green, and whatever color you want for the platter.
  3. A roasted turkey cookie cutter.  I got mine from Cheap Cookie Cutters here – http://www.cheapcookiecutters.com/products/baked-turkey-cookie-cutter.
  4. Food color markers.

After baking the cookies and letting them cool, outline and flood the body of the turkey.  I used chocolate brown with a little egg yellow and I was pleased with the color.

Outline and flood the turkey body.

Outline and flood the turkey body.

Once completely dry, draw on the legs and the wings with a food color marker.  You can also pipe on the platter now if you’d like.  I used sky blue for the platter.  You can use any color you’d like.

Add the platter in any color you choose.  I chose blue.  Draw legs and wings with food color marker.

Add the platter in any color you choose. I chose blue. Draw legs and wings with food color marker.

Pipe on the legs and the wings with the same roasted turkey colored icing.

Outline and flood the legs and wings.

Outline and flood the legs and wings.

Once dry, pipe on the “lettuce”, using a stiff consistency leaf green icing.  I used a small leaf tip.  I can’t remember the number.  Sorry.  I piped on about 10 lettuce leaves on each cookies and once I was finished with the tray, the leaves were dry enough for me to repeat the process without the icing running together.  Repeat the process until you are satisfied with the amount of “lettuce” on the platter.

Pipe on the "lettuce" with a small leaf tip.

Pipe on the “lettuce” with a small leaf tip.

Your cookies are done.  Yum!

Easy Caramel Apple Decorated Cookies

I hope that title is not misleading.  There is no caramel in the recipe nor are there any apples or apple flavoring.  These are sugar cookies.  And they have to be the easiest decorated cookies I’ve made in a long time.  Plus, they’re adorable!

Decorated Caramel Apple Cookies

Decorated Caramel Apple Cookies

Just take your favorite sugar cookie recipe and add red food color or electric green food color.  I decided to split the dough in half and use both.

Insert a stick into the “apple” and bake as usual.  Let the cookies cool and it’s time to decorate.

Make some caramel colored royal icing.  Thank you to Georganne from LilaLoa.com for her expert advice.  She uses 4 parts orange, 1 part electric green, and 1 part chocolate-brown to make her caramel-colored icing.  I followed her instructions and the color was perfect.  My royal icing looked so much like caramel that I had to stop myself from sticking a spoon in the bowl for a sample.

Outline and flood the cookie with the caramel-colored royal icing.  While the icing is still wet, sprinkle on some jimmies, sanding sugar, or whatever you want to use.

You can stop there if you want and consider your cookies decorated, but since my apple cookie cutter has a leaf included in its shape, I used some green royal icing and piped on a leaf and some brown royal icing to pipe on a stem.  I also used a green food color marker to draw the veins in the leaves, and I used a brown food color marker to give the stem some “texture”.

These cookies were gone so fast that I didn’t even get a chance to take pictures of the variety of sprinkles I used.