Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Humbling but fun Valentines Cookies

I was overcome by Valentine Love and decided to make fancy heart cookies for each kid and teacher in Primary. (About 60).  I must have been overcome by cookie blogs (I love this one)  The last "cut out" cookies I made were in the jurasic past and weren't that successful, but how hard could it be?  I can paint a portait so I should be able to produce some heart cookies with poka dots.  My goals were modest.  I used This recipe with the changes cookiecrazie made.  (She adds 1/2 C more flour and bakes at 325 for a longer time.)  This is the easiest handling dough for cut out cookies I've ever used.  Not sticky at all.  I used my wooden spoon handles for guides to rolling them out and it made the perfect thickness - about 3/8 inch.  I baked several batches in the two weeks before the day and put them in the freezer with parchment between layers of cookies.  The heart cookie cutter I've had for so long that I have no idea where it came from but it made a big cookie. 

cookiecrazie is really generous about directions on how to ice and decorate cookies.  The directions for icing she uses and her directions are pretty clear.  The icing has to dry for 12 to 24 hours so I started the Wed. before Valentines and figured I would do this in two or three decorating sessions.  I had bought some Wilton gel colors.   Boy, have they improved since I last used them  a hundred years ago.  Also - I don't know when they invented this - but WHITE food coloring is genius.  Plain frosting is sort of see through gray but add a few drops of white coloring and it's sparkly opaque white. 

Now for the humbling part.  It's alot harder than you think to make dots, or little hearts.  They ended up blobby (yes blobby) and smeary.  My worst ones gave me the idea to use a tooth pick and swirl the blobs in a tie dye type of design.  This worked great - and when I used red, yellow and blue (Primary colors) they turned out even better.  I call them "tie-dye" cookies.   I packed them in bags with a stappled on tag a la blonde-designs and well, pretty acceptable, but humbling to know that most things need practice.  Take a look. 
The BestLoved Baby Boy visited from college and declared the tie dye designs "the prettiest cookies I've ever seen'".  The kids loved them and I recovered from the sugar rush after a few days.  Verdict?  We may see more of these in the future.  They would be great party favors, but SIMPLE designs.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


I've got Noah's Arks ready to post on Etsy but the computer is being funky.  I'll be posting my design process and some of my many obsessions Here's a sneak peak at some of what will be there. 
I got the idea some time ago that I wanted to create handmade toys for the little people in my life.  Some of them could be for gifts and some to play with when they came to visit .  I wanted the toys to be wonderful enough that future generations would fight like wild weasels over them. 

The toy factory is growning into a small business and I still wake up at night with an idea for another design.  I think I want to play with them more than the short people.