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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas Sugar Cookies 2011 Version

I spent most of yesterday hunkered down over my kitchen table decorating sugar cookies and gingerbread cookies.  This post will mostly be pictures...with a couple of comments.  I've mentioned before that I love using squeeze bottles to decorate.  This year I purchased some bottles from Karen's Cookies that have a coupler top which allows you to use standard decorating, that was wonderful!  I also bought a little "pixie dust sprinkler" - also gets a "wow"...must get more!  I've never successfully used pixie dust or disco dust because I wasn't able to successfully sprinkle evenly...this tiny inexpensive gadget is PERFECT!  Beyond that, toothpicks and good craft tweezers are a decorator's best friend!  I've been really happy with all of my purchases from Karen - so check out her web site!  She is quite the cookie decorator and has some great tutorials.  Her piping bag prep technique was recently featured on Martha Stewart!

I'm going to give you the link to last year's post on cookie making and decorating in case you want the cookie recipe (which is wonderful because it stays flat and holds shape beautifully) as well as the royal and glace icings I use.  The only difference I did was to use some clear vanilla in the royal icing to give it some flavor but not mess up the colors like standard pure vanilla does.  Since I live in the sub-tropics, and we were in the 70s and humid yesterday, I had to crank the a/c down to 70 (which is really cold to me) and pretended that it was winter.  This allowed the humidity to get sucked out of the air and the cookies dried beautifully!  Lesson learned from my dear friend, Ann Smith.  Whew, that is a relief!

I decorated a lot of gingerbread cookies too...but that is a different post - coming soon.

I'm, rather obviously, not an artist, but I sure do have fun doing this.  The cookies and icing taste good and the kids and grandkids will be happy imbibers of cookies! (So will the husband once he gets past the "oh, those look too pretty to eat" stage)  Note - this time I used only regular royal icing for outlining and flooding.  I used different tips to get different lines...but next time I want to make some stiffer royal icing for the snowflakes above...the lines spread a bit, even on top of the dried colored icing...still pretty enough - but not the way I imagined them.  Now I know :-)

Here are the cookies!

I always get my workspace set up first.
Filled bottles of royal icing, tweezers, paper towels, toothpicks,
lots of sprinkles and sparkles, and other toppings are ready.
Oh yes, a little finger bowl of water is helpful to clean
fingertips and tools when they get icing all over them!
Just dry carefully before re-using.  Kitchen towels and
paper towels at the ready make for fast wiping of
hands and tools.
Mis en place is everything!
The first dozen took me about 45 minutes...then
I was limbered up and my hands were steady.  I was
ready to rock out the rest! Remember if you want
to layer a different color on top (and not have it sink in) you
will need to allow the bottom layer to dry completely.
The base for the red snowflake above
is shown completed below.

I love to feather and I love to detail with little sugar pearls,
jimmies and stars.  Disco dust is my new fave!

I tried the new Martha Stewart Pearlized decorating spray (the silvery tree
and the top candy cane) but since it changed the color of the icing
I had to stop and think about how to use that - it might
need to be a whole separate project.  I bought Pearl, Silver, and Gold
at Michael's on Saturday...the price is right compared to
some other brands I've seen and I can't wait to do a
project using it.  Maybe I was too close.

I liked the feathered candy cane - came out kind of cool.

I also like the heart candy canes and the two wreaths - some of my faves

The snowmen were laborious but very fun.  Need to
find something else besides tiny jimmies for making
their little arms.  That was a bit tough to do!  Got
out my Halloween sprinkles and found orange jimmies
to use for their noses and one even has a heart :-)

I hope your holiday baking is going well...I had to scale back my original overwhelming now I'm "back on schedule".  I'll do up the post on the gingerbread cookies that I did soon.  They turned out awesome!

Bon Appetit, Y'all!



Creations by Kara



  1. You did such a lovely job decorating. Sugar cookies take a lot of patience.

  2. I cant even imagine the creativity that went into this.. WOW you are so talented... this belongs on Food net work...amazing cookies.! Art at its finest!

  3. Thanks for all the tips! I stink at decorating cookies so always do the easiest designs possible. I will check out Karen's Cookies...your results are fabulous!

  4. These are so festive and pretty. I am not good at decorating. Sadly lacking the piping gene.

  5. These aren't cookies...they're works of art! BEAUTIFUL! ...and buzzed!

  6. Wow, that's some decoration skill at work here! Very impressive, pretty cookies!


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