You're either Team Candy Corn or not.
Even if you're not on Team Candy Corn, we all can agree that the appearance of candy corn in stores means that fall and Halloween is on the way! So if you like the look of candy corn, but not the taste, there's another option to adorn your decorated cookies this Halloween season- ROYAL ICING CANDY CORN!
All of the cuteness of candy corn without the candy corn taste! These royal icing transfers can be made in advance, and are the perfect accent your Halloween cookies.
What you'll need:
* candy corn template, found here!
* parchment paper or acetate sheet
* white royal icing, in a 25-28 second consistency; placed in an icing bag with tip
* scribe tool or toothpick
* airbrush machine
* yellow and orange airbrush colors
* a "shield"- I used the edge of a another stencil or a piece of parchment, but Stencibelle has some great blockers (including curved and shaped ones) on her page here!
* optional: magnets, cooling rack, fan
LET'S GET STARTED!
1. Print out a copy of the candy corn template. Place the acetate or parchment on top of the template. I used acetate because it's crystal clear, but parchment paper will work just fine, too! Magnets helped to secure the acetate and template to a metal cooling rack (as my cookie sheets are aluminum and therefore not magnetic). Or you can just tape the template and top sheet on a table or cookie sheet.
2. Pipe the candy corn shapes with the royal icing. Use the scribe tool or toothpick to smooth any bumpy spots on the icing.
3. After creating the desired quantity of candy corn transfers (remember to make more than you need!), allow the transfers to dry. I like to place them in front of an oscillating fan- here's where the magnets are especially helpful so your hard work doesn't blow away! If you piped your transfers on parchment paper, you can dry them in a very low heat oven (below 200*). Without the assistance of a fan or oven, transfers can take several hours to dry, or even overnight if the icing is thick.
4. After the icing is completely dry, cover the very tip of the candy corn. I used the flat edge from a stencil and secured it in place with magnets. If you have a difficult time controlling your airbrush spray, use a second shield to cover the remaining transfers from getting hit with overspray.
5. Load yellow airbrush color into your airbrush. With your airbrush machine on LOW, gently spray several coats of yellow color onto your transfers. Spray parallel to the shield, with a side-to-side sweeping motion. Multiple light coats of color is always better than thick coats that puddle. Plus, light coats dry quickly.
6. Once the yellow airbrushed layer is dry, add a second shield to cover the bottom third of the candy corn shape. You'll be left with an exposed strip in the middle of the candy corn shape where the orange color will be added.
7. Load orange airbrush color into your airbrush. With your airbrush machine on LOW, gently spray several coats of orange color onto your transfers. Yes, you'll be covering the yellow in the middle of the candy corn with orange color. That's ok! Use that same side-to-side sweeping motion to lay down the orange color.
8. Carefully remove the shields and allow the transfers to dry. Oh my goodness, they're soooo cute!
9. After the color has dried, the transfers can be easily popped off the acetate or parchment paper with an offset spatula or edging tool.
You can now affix your transfers to your cookies using royal icing or piping gel. You can drop them onto a fresh icing flood, or even use them as accents on your cookie platters!
FYI: I made these nerdy candy corn cookies from the Frankenstein/pilgrim
boy cutter from this set.
Let's take a side-by-side comparison of the candy corn transfers vs the real thing!
Am I on Team Candy Corn? You bet! And here's my favorite way to eat them- with a small dollop of peanut butter. The candy corn + peanut butter tastes just like a Butterfinger candy bar (minus the chocolate). It's SOOOOO good!
I can't wait to add these little candy corn transfers to many Halloween cookie sets!
Back in 2013, I had a request for baby diaper cookies. I didn't have a diaper cutter, so I hand cut every single diaper cookie for that set. I was very early in my "cookie career", and didn't watermark my cookie pictures at that point. My friend, a contributor to Babycenter.com, wrote an article about me and my small cookie enterprise, and included a picture of those diaper cookies. Although the article is no longer available, the photograph of those diaper cookies were pinned on Pinterest, and have been seen and re-pinned many times! You might recognize it from your own search!
I haven't had a request for baby diaper cookies since... until now! I was so excited to tackle this design again using cutters I now own, specifically Sugarbelle cookie cutters! This awesome cutter is found in the first collection of Sugarbelle Shape Shifters.
This cutter, as is, makes an awesome jean pocket cookie, like this one!
But with a few small modifications, this pocket cutter can make the cutest diaper cookies! To make the diaper cookies, you'll also need the curved trimmer from the Sweet Sugarbelle Shape Shifter set and a bench scraper (or knife).
What you'll need:
* Pocket cutter AND curved trimmer from Sweet Sugarbelle Shape Shifters Collection, first set.
* bench scraper or sharp straight knife
* royal icing in the following colors and consistencies:
white: thin flood and 20+ second consistency
grey: piping consistency
pink (or other accent color of your choice): piping consistency
* food safe wide paint brush
1. Prepare your favorite roll-out cookie dough. Use the pocket cutter to make the first cut. Use the curved trimmer to trim the bottom point of the cookie.
2. Use the bench scrapper or knife to trim a little from the "waist" of the cookie. Bake the cookie as directed on the recipe.
Now that the cookies are baked and cooled, take a look at the sketch to see where we're going with decorating the cookies.
3. Use a food safe paint brush to apply the white flood consistency to the leg holes of the cookies. This thin layer will dry quickly, so you'll be able to move on to the next step in no time.
4. Use the 20-second white royal icing to fill in the main portion of the diaper cookie. Allow the icing to dry.
5. Use the same royal icing (white, 20 second) to create the diaper flaps. Allow to dry.
6. Use the gray icing to pipe the metal parts of the safety pins.
7. Use the pink (or alternative accent color) to pipe the trim on the leg holes and waist, as well as the ends of the safety pins. That's it!
You know what? This design could easily be turned into other "undergarment" designs! Maybe an alternative diaper design with one large safety pin. Or maybe tightie-whities for a little boy who is being potty trained (yes, I rewarded my boys for their successful potty trips and it worked!), "granny panties" for a friend's milestone birthday (nothing says welcome to your 30's like granny panty cookies LOL!). Lots of options!
It was great fun to re-create this oldie-but-goodie design, and to replicate the staging of the original photograph from years ago. But I couldn't pass up the opportunity to reminisce when my boys were small by using their real baby blankets in this updated staging:
Oh. my. heart.
Have you ever been stuck with something? Being stuck with the dishes after a big family meal. Being stuck with walking the dog when it's pouring rain. Maybe it's a literal stuck, like insisting on grabbing a live cactus at Lowe's even though your parents warned you not to touch it (ahem... youngest Clough child).
One of the worst things is having an idea stuck in your head. And you've planned out how you'll pull off said idea. But you're stuck doing other stuff instead of following through on your idea.
Cue this Cactus Cookie. Picture this: spring 2017, just as the cactus craze was really starting to take off. I pulled out a bunch of cutters, sketched out my "flips" (or ways to repurpose them). I even baked some of them! And then, I got stuck. Stuck doing laundry, stuck doing orders, stuck with the trials and tribulations of life. My sketches and baked cookie ideas got stuck on the shelf. Until now!
I thought this was the perfect tongue-in-cheek design to celebrate Mother's Day or Father's Day (imagine a Dad cactus with a mustache and bowtie!). You know the saying- you can pick your friends, pick your nose, but you can't pick your family?
You're stuck with them.
You recognize the cutter, right? You might have this exact one, or something similar. It's a mitten! Here's a line drawing so you can see where we're going.
Here's what you'll need:
* baked mitten shape cookie
* food-safe marker (optional) to sketch the design on the cookie.
* Royal icing:
-20-second in the pot color of your choice and medium green.
-piping consistency in black, white, and a different shade of green (lighter or darker than the medium green to be used for the cacti lines)
-thick icing in the flower color of your choice.
1. Use the food safe marker to map out the top of the pot, parent and child cactus. Don't go to the edge of the cookie- leave room for the cactus spines. If you're good at eyeballing stuff, skip ahead to step 2.
2. Use the piping consistency green and the pot color to outline the cacti and pot. Let the lines dry. Remember to leave room for the spines around the edge of the cactus.
3. Flood the cacti with the medium green (the 20 second consistency one). Flood the pot. Let these sections dry.
4. Add in the eyes, mouth, cactus lines, and rim of the pot.
5. After the lines are dry, pipe some spines and cactus flowers. Decorate the pot, if you want! If I were making these for Father's Day, I would do a mustache, bowtie, and blue flowers on the parent cacti at this step. You're done!
I hope that you try out these cacti family cuties, to celebrate those loved ones that you're stuck with. Wouldn't they be great for siblings too?
Imagine this: You have an order of 80+ princess carriages. You order the perfect cutter online, only to discover that it's too big when it arrives in your mailbox. There's not enough time to order a new cutter. What do you do?
You might recognize the main body of my princess carriage. It's a particular "mouse" cutter, and LilaLoa turned it into a great princess carriage in this post.
But my cookie carriages needed a finial- that little extra piece at the top for more ornamentation. And I needed 80+ of them that were exactly the same.
It's time to FrankenCookie (aka. piece cookie parts together to make a single cookie). In my case, the "mouse" cutter is the core shape, with the accessory "round" cookie being the finial. By using the small round cookie and cutting the section out of the main carriage, there are more points of contact between the two cookie shapes. This will increase the stability of the cookie joint, and make it less likely to break off.
A parchment paper template will ensure that I piece together the cookies in the exact same spot,
each and every time!
What you'll need:
* parchment paper
* cookie cutters that you plan to piece together
1. Trace the INSIDE of the cutters you're using on parchment paper. You want to trace the inside of the cutters, since that's closer to the cut size of your cookie shape.
2. Cut out your template. Cut away the piece that will be "added on" by the other/ accessory/ smaller cutter. Erase any pencil marks on the parchment paper and be sure to clean the cookie cutters. You don't want to transfer any pencil marks to your cookie dough by accident.
3. Cut your main cookie shape and transfer it to the baking sheet. Place the parchment template over the main cookie shape, and cut out the accessory piece.
4. Cut and fill in the accessory piece. Be sure that the accessory piece is flush with the original cut piece. You might have to flip over the accessory piece to make it fit properly. See this blog post why this happens!
5. Bake the cookies just like always!
Look at the baked, undecorated cookie! They're perfect! The size and placement of the finial is the same for every cookie! Winning!
A comparison of the front versus the back.
Some tips and tricks to piecing cookies together:
You might be thinking, "I'll never piece any cookies together, because that seems like so much work!". Yes, it is time consuming, but it is another tool to add to your cookie arsenal, and it just might help you out of a jam like me! Here are some other pieced ideas!
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'll create! I'll bring the coffee- maybe Mike (The Cookie Widower) will make it for us.