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Friday, April 11, 2014

Easter and Spring...and a few cookies

I'm taking a quick trip this week-end to see my youngest, my middle, and my oldest!  Rarely do I get to visit with all of my sons at one time.  This is a real treat!  Unfortunately, Mr. Flip Flop is on-call and can't go with us.  I know someone has to do it...but he seems to have an inordinate amount of call scheduled!  Oh well, nothing to be done about it at this point.

I made a batch of Sweet Sugarbelle's Red Velvet Roll-outs because the older two have not had the chance to try them yet.  I think they are primo!  Unfortunately, the Cream Cheese MP Icing got a little wavy when I put it under a fan that was a bit too close to the cookies.  It literally moved the icing! 

I had planned to use a large Easter egg stencil I got a while back...so I made particularly large cookies...the cutter was 5x3 inches...and the cookies expanded 1/2 inch both ways!  The entire batch of dough only made 8 rectangles and a dozen teeny tiny little mini cookies.  Due to the waviness of the iced large cookies, I was afraid to use a plastic stencil with a thick royal icing - that only works when your cookie is nicely flat. 

I decided, instead, to airbrush a background and use some pieces of lace I purchased just for this technique.  I selected two different designs and cut a swatch that would drape over the cookies easily.  I hoped this would "sort of" mask the imperfect surface.  They did a fairly good job of doing just that!  One was sort of flowery and I used a blue pearl sheen for that one.  The other seemed maybe a bit less feminine...and since I had a lot of boys...I added some purple to the blue sheen and sprayed the second half of the large cookies.  I grabbed some wafer papers I had on hand and started flying by the seat of my pants...no drawn out plan as I usually do.

I practiced free-hand printing on all of these cookies -
one of my true weak skills in the decorating arena. 
I read that cookiers were using the thinner Masters brand
bags with no tip and just a bare snippet off the tip of the
piping bag.  I had some on hand so I tried it out on a small
baking mat.  I was really amazed at the level of control I had
compared to the more traditional piping bag and tips with couplers. 
I added a smidgen of corn syrup to a thick
piping icing to get a smooth flow...and it worked! 
Some letters look better than others...
but it is an improvement for me!
The minis just got a quick base coat as my intention was for us to munch on the tidbits instead of decorate them.  Half of them did go that way - but the other half of the minis got a last minute, quickly piped flower to use up some leftover icing.  These little cookies are barely larger than
1 1/4 inch, so REAL minis!

The blue pearled cookies got a dose of Easter décor.  These are the very cute Peter Rabbit wafer papers I got from CookiePixie on Etsy.  She has a wonderful selection of prints, including vintage prints, and I feel her prices are reasonable for quality wafer paper prints.  This batch goes to my Granddaughters and my middle son.


The other cookies (including some not shown - don't get in a snit youngest son - there is one for you) had wafers of blue bonnets applied.  When we start seeing blue bonnets (around mid to late March) in Texas...we know it's Spring.  After such a rough Winter...I'm thrilled that I'll be seeing wildflowers this week-end.  It's a great sadness to me that they don't seem to grow down here by the coast.  I was happy to put them on cookies this year!

I had never tried a running bead border, so I gave it a shot
around the wafer papers.
The outer border was a shell border. 
I did use royal icing for all of the detail. 
The Cream Cheese MP Icing is really quite soft! 
It does, however, have fabulous
flavor on the Red Velvet cookies!

So, wherever you are in the U.S.A., or beyond, I hope you get to enjoy some lovely flowers and beautiful colors in your landscape...some are in Springtime...and other friends are in Autumn.  Whatever it is, I do love the moderate seasons between harsh Winter and hot Summer!  Hope you do to.

Field of Bluebonnets near Austin, TX
Photo by Ian Hook

Bon Appetit, Y'all!!!

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