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!
FODDER SHOCK. What an unusual word!
Doesn't it sound like an expletive in another language? Just imagine the following scenarios:
1. Mumbling "oh fodder shock" as you're walking through magic doors at Target because you realized that the lengthy grocery list is still on the fridge at home.
2. In a moment of pain, you exclaim "OUCH! FODDER SHOCK!" after you stubbed your toe on the dining room chair leg.
3. You exclaim "FODDERRRR SHOCKKKK" as a full carton of eggs slips out of your hands and crashes to the floor.
A fodder shock is a real, actual, thing! Commonly, they're a cluster of dried corn stalks that are used as autumn decor. Traditionally, farmers made them to store the corn stalks to use as animal feed in the winter. I have always lived in rural area full of farm fields, but never heard of this word until a client recently asked for them. Truthfully, I felt quite stupid until I asked my husband (who is a lot smarter than me) and even he didn't know what they were. So we both learned a new vocabulary word! Has anyone else learned a new word today? (please say yes, please say yes...)
I've made REAL corn stalk clusters (aka fodder shocks) to frame my front door. And guess what? I think they're more fun to make in cookie form!
And tastier too...
I used Sweet Sugarbelle's pencil cutter from her shape-shifter set for the base cookie. Don't have the shape-shifter set? You could use a rectangle or your favorite plaque shape, while you are waiting for your own shape-shifter set to be delivered by the UPS carrier. Because you NEED to have it. On a side note, click here to read the Cookie Widower's (my hubby!) thoughts on parcel carriers.
You'll need the following to create these fall favorites:
*tan/taupe royal icing in thicker piping consistency (I used ivory and a touch of green and chocolate brown to make this taupe color)
*darker brown royal icing in piping consistency (optional)
*orange piping consistency (optional)
*round tip (like a PME 1.5 or Wilton 2), and a leaf tip (I love my PME ST50)
Here we go!
1. OPTIONAL! Add a royal icing base color to your cookie. I used my off-set spatula to smear on a layer of darker brown because I wanted a little "rustic-ness" to the base. You could do a regular icing flood if you wanted a smooth look. These would be awesome on LilaLoa's Chocolate Roll-Out recipe (which is absolutely awesome, by the way). No base icing coat would be needed then!
2. Use a small round tip and the tan/taupe piping consistency royal icing to make the corn tassels (that's the fan-like things at the top). Next, pipe some long corn stalks. Don't worry about them being straight, or how many there are. Just make a bunch of them.
3. Switch to a petal tip on that same tan/taupe icing. Pipe some random leaves on the stalks. Be sure to add leaves at the middle and base of the stalks, too. It's ok to overlap leaves, and don't worry if they break or don't look perfect.
4. Now comes the magic! Add a few more stalks with the round tip. Pipe them right over the leaves. It was this step that made me think to myself "that's a fine looking fodder shock!".
5. Use either the tan/taupe or the darker brown to pipe a few horizontal lines to represent the string that tied your fodder shock together.
If you wanted, you could be done at this point!
Or you could choose to add some other fall accents. I piped a pumpkin at the base of these fodder shocks. A potted fall mum would be awesome, too!
I love the texture that these fodder shocks add to a fall-themed platter!
Have a fodder shock-ing fall!
Every season, new cookie cutters make their appearance in craft and discount stores. Pictures are posted on Facebook or Instagram by the lucky cookiers who first spied them. A mad rush to the stores ensues, followed by the updated pictures and statuses of "I found them!" and "I bought extras-who needs them!". And those of us who are unable to score the highly sought-after shapes are left to cry in our cookie dough with dreams of what-ifs.
And then comes along a Cookie Fairy Godmother.
I was completely surprised by one such Cookie Fairy Godmother, who spontaneously gifted me with cutters that were on my wish list! Top of the list included the Wilton turkey and turkey leg cutter set.
Thanksgiving is in the VERY near future! Do you have your guest list finalized? I have never hosted Thanksgiving. My hubby, kids, and I alternate between my parent's house and my in-law's house from year to year. This year, we'll be at my in-law's, and my contributions include Maryland Crab Dip, cookies (of course), and pumpkin fluff dip (a new addition to my recipe binder!).
I sometimes wonder about those individuals who are in charge of organizing the big meal- and how stressful it would be! What if there were unexpected guests? Like Charlie Brown's Thanksgiving when half the neighborhood kids show up to Grandmother's house for turkey? We're out of mashed potatoes! There's not enough plates! SOMEONE ATE THE LAST COOKIE! It's enough to give me nightmares.
However, I wouldn't mind THESE extra guests to my dinner table!
This pair o' pilgrims is sweet and simple- and you still have enough time to make them for YOUR unexpected guests to enjoy!
So many times, people say "Oh, I can't eat that cookie because it's so pretty!". You know who DOESN'T say that? KIDS. Especially little kids. They don't look at the fine details that I fussed over. They don't notice the craters, the not-so-even floods, the color bleed. All they see is a tasty treat that they get to eat!
One of the joys I have is to make cookies for a local daycare. My friend creates elaborate birthday parties for each of her daycare kids. Stepping inside her backdoor, you are transported under the sea with jellyfish floating above you, or deep within the woods with mushroom stools to rest your body upon And she asks for special cookies to sweeten the day for the children. I put my heart into each one of those sets, like these little sweet grapevine hearts!
Start with a flooded and dried heart. I used Americolor's Ivory- I love the creaminess of it!
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.