Saturday, November 30, 2013

Month 2 of 12- A Breakthrough

Don't get too cookies don't look good....yet.  But I did finally find a sugar cookie recipe and icing recipe that I really like.  I am still going to experiment with other recipes but this is going to be my go-to recipe. 

The sugar cookie recipe is from  I changed one thing about this recipe.  A friend who also decorates cookies told me that the secret is to use cake flour.  I found that using all cake flour will make the dough too difficult to work with.  I used half regular flour and half cake flour.  I also used half almond flavoring and half vanilla flavoring (I love the taste of almond).  The result was DELICIOUS cookies that held their shape and the dough was easy to work with.  I was so happy to finally find a recipe I loved!  

The royal icing recipe I used was from  The recipe was easy to make and easy to work with.  I again used half vanilla flavoring and half almond flavoring....yum!  

I made the dough on day 1, baked the cookies on day 2 and decorated on day 3.  

My breakthrough with the sugar cookie recipe and success with the icing made me feel better about not being successful with my decorating skill.  One thing at a time.  Hopefully next month will be my breakthrough on decorating.  

I piped my leaves with a brown icing, then flooded with yellow or green flood icing.  I really like the wet-on-wet technique and did this with the alternate color to make the veins on the leaves.  I didn't really like the way they turned out.  Then I used the color spray mist to add the changing leaf colors to the finish.  I didn't really like the way those came out either. 

My favorite cookies were the leaves with no wet-on-wet and no color mist spray and I piped the brown vein of the leaf on top when the flood icing dried.      

Here is the final result:

They tasted soooo good!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Month 1 out of 12- First Batch of Cookies

My challenge is to bake and decorate at least one batch of cookies a month to improve my cookie decorating abilities.  This is month #1 of #12 and beyond.  (I'm hoping to be good in a'll laugh after you see the pictures) 

The pictures I'm about to post are NOT the pretty, perfect cookies that you see on other cookie decorating blogs.  This is literally the first cookies I have ever decorated!

I used cookie cutters that I had, left-over icing coloring and a recipe for cookies and frosting from an amazing cookie decorator,  If you haven't checked her out, you must!  She is very inspiring and of course, super talented.  Since it's October, I used Halloween cookie cutters but the icing that I had was pastel colored.....a very strange combination.

Am I ready for this picture?!


I guess I should also mention that I'm not good at photography!  I'll work on that too.  This picture was taken before the icing had dried.  I need to mention that this isn't the classic sugar cookie recipe.  I used a highly rated chocolate chip cookie roll-out recipe from Sweet Sugar Belle. 

I made the frosting on day 1, baked cookies on day 2 and decorated cookies on day 3.

The taste results:  Well, this is funny....I am on a diet that I will not break (right now)  and couldn't taste the cookies!  Can you believe that one?  I used my taste-testers (daughter, son, fiancĂ© and two co-workers) to give me their opinions.  4 out of 5 that they were just-okay tasting.  1/5 really, really, really liked them (and they weren't just being nice).  This is not good-enough results for me.  I will try the recipe one more time to make sure....maybe when I can taste them. 

The visual results:  Well, you can clearly see that I have A LOT of room to grow.  I have never been creative or good at drawing and it shows!  I thought the swirly design on the round cookie was neat but didn't look like a spider web. 

I used chocolate chip roll-outs because my daughter doesn't like sugar cookies and wanted to try this out.  Sugar cookies are definitely coming in the near future.  Although I couldn't taste it yet, I loved the royal icing recipe from Sweet Sugar Belle.  It was easy to make and easy to use.  The only problem is my skill.  So, my apologizes to Sweet Sugar Belle for advertising her recipes on such horrible cookie models! 

First batch down and getting ready for batch #2.  Will there be any improvement?!  Go ahead and place your bets now on whether I will be really good in a year or throw in the towel...... 

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Adventures of an Amateur Cookie Decorator

          This is my attempt at starting a blog.  I started a new hobby obsession of baking and decorating cookies.  I have never done this before and I'm not good at it.....yet.  I am hoping that I eventually will be good great amazing at decorating cookies.  I thought it would be neat to see how I started out and then how I gradually got better.  Or it's going to show how I never got good enough and gave up!  I'm hoping for the former. 

          Why do a blog?  I have spent a few many hours watching tutorials online and reading amazing cookie decorator blogs.  Their cookies are edible, perfect pieces of art.  They have been super helpful by posting recipes and pictures.  I haven't found a lot of blogs from "amateur" cookie decorators that show their beginnings.  Hopefully, this blog will be helpful for others who are wanting to try out cookie decorating.  I also thought having a blog would help me from not giving up.    

          My challenge: To bake and decorate at least one batch of cookies a month.  These cookies will probably always remain just for family and friends but maybe a huge maybe I will get good enough to sell them.

Get ready to see pictures of cookies and hear about mishaps from someone who has no idea how to decorate cookies!