When I was growing up, Thanksgiving in my house was the traditional roasted turkey feast, from the juicy bird to the jellied cranberry sauce from the can (My dad insisted on having the whole cranberry stuff too- blech!). Aside from my mom's sweet potato pie, my absolute favorite part was the STUFFING. Now this term is actually a little misleading because my mom never put this seasoned bread concoction actually inside the bird, but rather in a pan that was baked until crispy and brown and absolutely delicious. So I guess "dressing" would be the more appropriate term for it. But in my house, it was "stuffing", and that's exactly how I felt at the end of the meal. Stuffed.
Ever since I began my cookie journey, I've made turkey cookies to accompany the pies on the dessert table. So before we all get stuffed for Thanksgiving, let me share with you how to make these turkeys!
What you'll need:
* turkey cookie shape (mine is from this Ann Clark cutter)
* royal icing (in a 20-second consistency) of the colors: brown, white, black, gray, red
* black sugar pearls (optional)
* scribe tool or toothpick
* food marker
1. Use a food marker to mark the location of the tail, wing, and neck.
2. Starting with the outer edge of the tail feathers, pipe a line of icing. Immediately pipe the next icing line right next to the previous icing line. Continue with this wet-next to-wet technique.
3. Immediately take the scribe tool or toothpick and drag it through the icing, starting at the edge of the feathers and working your way to the base of the tail.
4. While the tail feathers are starting to dry, use the gray icing to pipe the head of the turkey and drop on the sugar pearl eye (if you don't have black sugar pearls, just pipe an eye once the head is dry). Use some black icing to add feet. Truthfully, you could use all sorts of colors for the head of the turkey, including brown, red, or even blue! Yes, blue! If you're feeling brave, go ahead and do a google image search of "turkey head". Ugliest.things.ever. LOL! Let these sections dry for a bit.
5. Use the brown icing to create the body of your bird. Use the black icing to pipe a tiny beak. Let these sections dry for a bit.
6. Time for the final details! Pipe the wing using the same wet-next to-wet technique as you did the tail. Once again, drag the scribe tool or toothpick through the icing, creating the feathers. Grab the red icing and make the waddle. You're done!
Add in some beautiful fall leaves or acorns to keep your cookie turkeys happy, like these acorns made from this Ann Clark cutter!
Or even add in some pilgrims, like these made from a turkey cutter, designed by LilaLoa (also found at Ann Clark)! You can see some other pilgrim cookie designs from different cutters here and here!
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Frankly, I think the creature we commonly call Frankenstein might just be my favorite Halloween-time character. Maybe it's because I love the pop of green that my soothes my eyes amidst the sea of traditional orange and black Halloween colors. Maybe it's because I like to picture him as a cute cartoony character instead of the monstereous thing that is depicted in the book/movies. In any case, I love making Frank in cookie form!
This year, I got my hands on one of these sets of Halloween cutters, designed by Sweet Sugarbelle.
Do you see a Frankenstein cookie design on the box? Nope! But I let my cutter-flipping brain take over, to repurpose that awesome skull cutter pictured on the upper right of the box cover.
1. Bake the skull shape with your favorite roll-out cookie recipe.
2. Use black and purple icing to make Frank's hair and shirt. Let these sections dry.
3. Use green icing to make Frank's face. Let this section dry really well before adding the details.
4. Use orange, green, black, and grayish icing colors to make the final details. You're done!
You can pair your Frankenstein cookies with some other fun Halloween shapes, like these other cookies make from Sweet Sugarbelle cutters. Aren't they great for a not-so-scary Halloween party?
But I think Frankenstein is still my favorite!
I've had this bell cutter for many years now. And guess what? I've never made a bell cookie with it until this year! But don't let that fool you- it's one of my ABSOULTE FAVORITE CUTTERS. I'm not lying. It's one of those cutters that never finds it's way back into my "Christmas" cutter bin because I always come back to it over and over again. And if I put it in my Christmas bin, I would have to get on a step stool to get it all the time. And that's too much work. And chances are, something would fall on me as I tried to bring down my Christmas bin box. So for safety's sake, I keep it out. Always.
If a cookie cutter could be my best friend, it would look like this:
I find cutters all over the place in store and online, but this treasured bell shape can only be found in ONE location during the Christmas season: DOLLAR TREE. It will come in a bundle like this:
Here are the other cutters in the bundle. The other cutters are nothing to write home about, in my opinion. But that bell! Swoon.
You might be wondering why this shape is my favorite? Let me show you!
Note: For all of these designs, the cookie cutout is left as-is, or I trimmed the small hanger part prior to baking.
This bell is my go-to for heads and faces- especially if the person is wearing a HAT, like these heroes in uniform:
Or maybe some friends at Thanksgiving:
Corn in the summer, or the fall:
Backbones for a chiropractor, or pirates for a swashbuckling party:
A worm on a fishing hook for an angler cookie set.
And, of course, the intended use of the cutter:
Moral of the story?
Look outside the BELL when designing your cookies!
One of my favorite childhood cartoons was Tom & Jerry, especially the earlier episodes (pre-1960). It's awesome that my own young kids love Tom & Jerry as much as I did. Once I hear the theme song during the opening credits, I stop what I am doing and watch with my kids. Because yes, my kids and I bond over Jerry getting the best of Tom. My kids are fascinated by all the traps the characters set for each other. And before I know it, my kids are asking me for refrigerator boxes, wooden planks, a broom, a mousetrap, and an anvil. Yeah, good luck with that one.
I had the lucky opportunity to create a dog-themed cookie collection, and wanted to add a few new dog designs to my repertoire. It just so happened that an episode of Tom & Jerry was on the tv, and Spike was in the episode too! If you've seen T&J, you'll know Spike- the big bulldog who is the forever champion of Jerry. Spike seemingly gets in the middle of the Tom-chasing-Jerry antics, when all he wants to do is take a nap. The inspiration for my new bulldog cookie was barking at me from my tv, and I couldn't wait to get started!
First, I started with the tulip and skull cutter from Sweet Sugarbelle's shape-shifter set. Need one? Get the set here.
Use the small part of the skull cutter to remove the middle petal on the tulip. You're left with the perfect bulldog head shape! Now, bake your cookies.
You'll need the following icing colors/consistencies to make these pups:
* Gray royal icing in a 20-second consistency and a piping consistency. I hated mixing gray colors, until I found ProGel gray. Game changer! It's the perfect gray!
* White royal icing in a 20-second consistency
* Black royal icing in a 20-secong consistency
Let's get started!
1. Use the 20-second gray royal icing to pipe the forehead and chin. Allow to dry.
2. Use the same icing to pipe the droopy jaws and the triangles that will become the underside of the ears. Allow to dry.
3. Pipe the outer edges of the ears in gray. Use the gray piping consistency to make the forehead wrinkles and dots on the jaws. Make his nose and gleaming white teeth. Allow to crust.
4. Pipe the lower eye lid in gray. Wait a few minutes to allow it to crust. Now, finish the eye with the white and black royal. You're done!
Not only is the bulldog a popular breed for pet owners, the bulldog is a mascot of many high schools and colleges. It's the mascot of one of my local high schools, and I anticipate that this doggy will make his way on to some graduation platters in the spring.
Another great idea is to put together a collection of doggy-themed cookies to say "Thanks" to a local dog rescue or SPCA. Because everyone likes cookies.
One of my absolute favorite cartoons as a kid was Tom & Jerry, especially the earlier episodes (pre-1960). It's awesome that my own young kids enjoy it as much as I did! Once I hear the theme song during the opening credits, I stop what I'm doing and come watch with my kids. Because yes, we bond over watching Jerry get the best of Tom. And my boys are fascinated by all the traps the characters set for each other. Before I know it, by boys are asking me for refrigerator boxes, wooden planks, mousetraps, a broom, and an anvil. Yeah, good luck with that one.
I had the lucky opportunity to create a collection of dog-themed cookies, and I wanted to add a bulldog design to my cookie repertoire. It just so happened that an episode of Tom & Jerry was on the tv, and I caught a glimpse of Spike! If you know T&J, you'll know Spike- that big bulldog who is the forever champion of Jerry. Spike seemingly gets in the middle of the Tom-chasing-Jerry chaos, when all he wants to do is take a nap. So to honor this childhood favorite, I set to work on a bulldog design, inspired by Spike the bulldog himself.
First, I used the tulip and skull cutters from Sweet Sugarbelle's shape shifter set.
Use your favorite roll out cookie recipe, and cut out a tulip shaped cookie. Use the small part of the skull to cut out the middle petal, which creates the perfect bulldog head! Bake the cookie shape.
You'll need the following icing colors and consistencies:
* Gray icing in a 20-second consistency and piping consistency (I use ProGel gray to tint my icing. It's the perfect shade!)
* white icing in a 20-second consistency
* black icing in a 20-second consistency
Let's get started!
Not only is the bulldog a popular dog breed for pet owners, the bulldog is widely used a mascot for various schools and colleges. One of my local high school's mascot is a bulldog, and I anticipate that his guy might be a favorite for graduation platters.
Or as a great "Thank You" gift for a local dog rescue or SPCA!
Find out how to make the adorable schnauzer/terrier here!
And my inspiration for the pug doggy came from Flower Box Bakery!
Guess I'll need to make a beagle cookie tutorial soon. . . :)
Santa cutters? To make mermaids? Yup! Let's just say that it's my own little "Christmas in July" party. I love being able to re-purpose cutters! I realize that it's a gift that I have that not everybody has. Other people can sing and dance and reach the the top shelf of their kitchen cabinet without a stool. Me? I can make a mermaid from a Santa cutter. #winning
So which Santa cutters did I use for these cuties?
This Santa cutter is my current favorite to make Santa cookies. It comes in a set with some other Wilton holiday cutters. Find it here.
This cutter is Wilton's Santa comfort grip cutter. Find it here.
I try to stick to my *average* sized cookie (say 3.25"-3.5") when I complete my orders. It's ingrained in me, through my attempts at keeping things even-steven between my boys. Otherwise known as my attempt at World Peace.
Sometimes, I still purchase mini cutters or extra big cutters because you just never know when you'll need them. Lo and behold, an oversized Santa makes a great mermaid too! Find this cutter here.
So don't neglect those "out of season" cutters. You might just find a shape that will work perfectly for your design!
A rose by any other name would be . . . an acorn? In this case, YES! Thanks to Sugarbelle, you can create a cookie rose with many shapes- other than a rose cutter!
I actually own a rose cookie cutter, but it was a little too small for my liking . As I was digging through my many many many bins of cutters, this acorn cutter caught my eye! Upside down, it's the perfect shape for a closed rosebud!
What you'll need:
* acorn shaped cookies
* flood and thicker royal icing consistencies, in your favorite rose color
* thick, green royal icing for the sepals (the little leaves at the base of a bud)
* petal dust for light shading (optional)
What to do:
1. Cut and bake your favorite acorn shape and size.
2. Turn the cookie upside down. Flood the base of the rosebud. Let dry.
3. Use thicker royal icing, in the same color as the rose, to pipe the lines of the petals. Use my picture above as a guide. Or just do a little swirl at the top!
4. Use a petal decorating tip (my favorites are the PME leaf tips- 50, 51, 52) and the thick green icing to create the outer sepals
5. After a few minutes, pipe the center sepal. You're done!
If you wanted to, brush on a little petal dust to give some shading to the rosebud.
It's up to you!
These easy rosebuds are pretty on their own. . .
. . . or great as accent cookies with some other Valentine's Day sweets!
Happy Valentine's Day!
Wanting to make some cute and quick pilgrims, but not sure of what to do?
If you have a diamond ring cutter, then you're set! My ring cutter is a good size- nearly 4" tall. But the design would still work if you have a smaller ring cutter instead!
If you're interested, you can find the sketches to these pilgrims here in the template section. You can use them in a projector (like a Pico or KopyKake) or print and cut as a template. They're not fancy- just a pic of my actual sketches. But they're still useful! Enjoy!
In my opinion, many cookie cutters wear a disguise. It's like they celebrate Halloween every day! I love trying to figure out their alter-egos.
Recently, I was digging through my bin of Halloween cutters in search of a witch cutter. I knew I had at least one head/hat cutter, but I wanted the full witchy body. I stumbled on this cutter:
An ordinary bat cutter, one of which I have NEVER used (I have many cutters that fall into this category. . . ). However, this cutter was turned on its side in the bin. I mentally could "see" things in the cutter:
Here's the result:
By the way, here's another design that I "saw".
I have absolutely no idea when I'll need a man with a little hat and big nose, but I know what cutter I'll use!
I love re-purposing cutters, especially using a single cutter for making multiple designs for one occasion. A skull cutter has so many possibilities! I have a small collection of skull cutters, and I am always on the lookout for a new skull style.
Many skull cutters have the built-in cheekbones, but not all. In fact, the cutter on the upper right is one of my favorite cutters to make ladybugs!
I used this skull cutter to make a collection of Halloween characters- ironically, a skull was not one of them!
I decided to create a Frankenstein, pumpkin, mummy, and Dracula.
Check out the video on how to create Dracula!
I'm Amy. Wife, Mom, former science teacher- and now full time cookie baker on Maryland's Eastern Shore. Pull up a chair and we create! I'll bring the coffee- maybe Mike (The Cookie Widower) will make it for us.