Saturday, January 29, 2011

Constructing Elmo, Cookie Style!

What you see here are the decorating essentials to make the cutest Elmo cookie you will ever see! Your kids will love you forever if you make these cookies for them. Or better yet, grab the kids and let them help!

Elmo Cookie Supplies:
-scalloped/daisy flower cookie cutter
-red sprinkles
-orange peanut M&Ms
-brown Reese Pieces
-1 batch Sugar Cookies & royal icing (this recipe will make 30 Elmo cookies)

-Bake a batch of cookies and let them cool before decorating.
-Make a batch of royal icing. Tint about 1/4 cup black and the remaining icing red.
-Thin down 1/4 of the batch of red royal icing with water to create the "piping consistency". You want the icing to be stiff enough to hold the outline around the cookie, but soft enough to squeeze out of the piping bag without having to apply too much pressure. (Do the same with the black royal icing)
-Thin down the remaining 3/4 of the icing with even more water to create the "flooding consistency". My rule for making "flooding" icing is to add water a teaspoon at a time and stirring. Keep adding water and stirring, while lifting up the spatula you are mixing with out of the icing and allowing some of the icing to fall back onto itself in the bowl. When the icing falls back into the bowl and completely disappears in the mixture of icing in the count of 10 seconds your icing is thin enough to flood.

Using a piping bag and tip # 2 or 3, with the "piping consistency" icing trace around the edge of the cookie. Go around all scallops except for the top two, and just draw a line across the top to close off the scalloped portion. Allow the piped icing to dry about 30-60 minutes before flooding.

Using the "flooding consistency" icing fill a plastic bottle and squeeze in a zig zag motion inside of the piped icing. The icing will start to flood and fill in. I normally do this for about 6 cookies at a time and then go back through and fill in any spaces remaining to completely flood the cookie.

Here is what your completely flooded cookie will look like.

Immediately add red sugar sprinkles to the flooded icing before it dries. Can you see Elmo coming to life now?

Ok how about now? He needs some eyes right? Take a large marshmallow and cut it in half. Using the royal icing in the piping bag squeeze a dab on each half of the marshmallow in the center and then apply a brown Reese Pieces to each. Now Elmo has eyes!

Squeeze a dab of royal icing on the top two scallops of the cookie that do not already have icing on them and place the marshmallow eyes in place.

Grab an orange peanut M&M and place on the cookie in between the marshmallow eyes using a dab of royal icing to secure on top.

Take the black royal icing, place in a piping bag with tip #2 and draw a mouth on Elmo. Easy enough, right?

Allow cookies to dry 24 hours before packaging or shipping.

In a few hours two of my favorite little munchkins will be gobbling up these cookies to celebrate their birthdays! I made these Elmo cookies for my friend Katie and shipped them for her kids bday party! Her girl Kaylee is turning 3 and her son Collier is turning 1. Can't wait to see pictures of these little cookie monsters enjoying their Elmo cookies!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Tractor Bday Cake

Dirt & tractors...I'm not sure there are two things that little boys like more.

This past weekend was some of our great friends, little boy's 3rd birthday and the theme was "yellow construction".

Using the party plates and napkins for inspiration I designed a cake and cupcakes to celebrate his special day.

And no that is not real dirt on the cake, I'm not that crazy! It is crushed Oreo's, also probably the most tasty dirt you will ever eat!

There's the birthday boy! How cute is he, patiently waiting for birthday cake!

Happy Birthday Joshua!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Mardi Gras Mask Cookies

Mardi Gras is fast approaching here in Mobile. Only a few weeks left until the first parade hits the town and the crowd goes wild for beads and moon pies being thrown from the elaborately decorated floats. It is truly a month long celebration of weekend parades, fancy costumes and Mardi Gras balls.

To kick off the Mardi Gras season I helped a friend host a mask making party for her Mardi Gras organization, the Butterfly Maidens. Each year all the different groups have a theme and they decorate their floats and make costumes to match.

Here are a few sample masks I made to go with this years theme of black & gold. The black masks were found at our local Mardi Gras shop, Toomeys. Talk about a million types of beads, I have never seen so many different colors, sizes and bead themes in my life.

The gold trim, sequins, jewels, feathers and butterflies were found from the local craft stores.

It was only right for me to make some mask cookies to take to the mask decorating party, right? Since I didn't have a mask cookie cutter I made my own. I found a mask clip art image online and scaled it up to the size I wanted. I printed the shape and cut it out to use as my template. After rolling out my cookie dough I placed the template on top of the dough and using a sharp knife I traced around the shape to create the mask. Yes, this method is a little more time consuming than using a cookie cutter, but it was totally worth it.

I love how the cookies turned out! It was fun to decorate them all differently using purple, green and yellow royal icing and sprinkles.

Everyone at the party loved the cookies! Once the first parade rolls around in February I'm definitely going to have to make another batch, or two or ten!

To learn more about Mobile Mardi Gras click here.

I used this sugar cookie recipe.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Minnie Mouse Birthday Cake

Happy Monday! Hope everyone had a great weekend! I had the opportunity to make a cake for a Minnie Mouse themed birthday party for a little girl named Emma who was turning three! To accompany the cake I made some mouse ear cupcakes with pink polka dot ribbons. This was definitely a sweet pink cake for sweet little girl.

This weekend I'll be switching gears and making a birthday cake for another 3 year old, only this time a boy and with a yellow construction theme! Be sure to check back next week for pics of the cake!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Brownie Oreo Cheesecake Bars

As you all know 2010 was the year of the cupcake, at least on my blog it was! I can't believe I got wrapped up in those sweet little cakes that I didn't have a single post devoted to cheesecake. Well the wait is over and today I'm excited to share with you my oh so yummy Brownie Oreo Cheesecake Bars. I thought I would take a walk on the wild side and combine brownies and cheesecake into one dessert with a few Oreos (only the greatest cookie invented) mixed in the middle. The result is a creamy and chocolately bite of heaven, with a little cookie crunch! I took these to a football party last night for the BCS College Championship game and everyone devoured them! If you have a pack of Oreos in your pantry right now I highly recommend you give this recipe a try.

I love the layered look to this bar. I'm already envisioning even more flavor combinations. Turtle cheesecake, strawberry or raspberry cheesecake or even a chocolate marble cheesecake would all be fabulous with the brownie base.

Brownie Oreo Cheesecake Bars (30 servings)

For the Brownie Batter:
-2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
-3 oz milk chocolate chips
-3 oz bittersweet chocolate chips
-1 1/2 cups sugar
-2 eggs
-1 tsp vanilla
-1/4 tsp salt
-1 cup flour
-1 tsp baking powder

  • Line a 9 x 13 pan with aluminum foil. Spray with cooking spray.
  • In microwave safe bowl melt butter and chocolate about 1 - 2 minutes and stir to combine.
  • Add sugar, eggs, vanilla and salt to chocolate mixture and stir.
  • Whisk in flour and baking powder.
  • Spread brownie batter evenly in prepared pan.
For the Oreo Cheesecake batter:
-2 8 oz packages of cream cheese, softened
-1/2 cup sugar
-2 eggs
-1 tsp vanilla
-20 Oreo sandwich cookies, chopped

  • Combine cream cheese and sugar in medium bowl and cream with electric mixer.
  • Mix in vanilla and eggs.
  • Stir in chopped Oreos.
  • Spread cream cheese batter over top of brownie batter.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Cool on wire rack.
  • Refrigerate 2-3 hours or until ready to serve.
Hope you enjoy these as much as I did. I'm off to the fridge to grab another one for a bedtime snack! It's only my 3rd one today, don't tell!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Snowflake Cookies

Happy New Year! So far I have yet to bake anything in 2011, I can't believe it! I'm trying to resist the temptation and keep my mom's kitchen clean while I'm her house guest! I'm still in KY visiting family from the holidays and for work so I hope to start baking again this weekend when I return back to Mobile. I promise there will be more sugar filled treats coming up soon! So for now I'll leave you with some snowflake cookies my sister and I decorated to celebrate our white Christmas this year! Christmas morning was absolutely gorgeous with a fluffy blanket of white on the ground and flurries in the air! If the weatherman is right, it looks like I'll get to enjoy one more dusting of snow on Friday before heading back south! Hope you enjoy these cookies!

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