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“My blog is a collection of tidbits about the things I love... sugar cookies, baking, great food, cute stuff, and life in Happy Valley. Check back often for updates!!”

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How to Decorate a Cool Pineapple Cookie

posted Tuesday Mar 14, 2017 at 05:30 PM by Anne Yorks — 0 comments

Clipart can be great inspiration for Cookies! Check out this adorable pineapple cookie using clipart

I purchased this clipart set from JWIlustrations -

Click here to purchase and download!

Watch the video to learn what tip sizes I used to create this cookie. Also, use the graphics to know when to dry each phase!

Are you new to decorating? Click here to check out our 'getting started' tutorials for videos on how to make royal icing, piping and flooding, and rolling and baking. Recipes are included in the videos!

This video also features a KopyKake. You could also use a Pico projector to get an exact image.

The supplies featured in this video are the pineapple cookie cutter

And the scales stencil!

Here's hoping this cute and summery cookie brings the sun to melt all the show in Pennsylvania right now!

Happy Decorating!
Anne

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How Much do I Make?

posted Tuesday Mar 14, 2017 at 10:57 AM by Anne Yorks — 4 comments

The biggest struggle I had when I first started decorating was learning how much dough and icing I would need for a cookie project. This blog post will outline my method for planning for small (1 dozen), medium (4 dozen), and large (12 dozen) cookie projects. I hope this is helpful as you tackle your next decorating project!! First, click below to download this free icing chart. Also, at the bottom of this lengthy blog post is an icing video. You can click to watch it here too!

The Great Icing Experiment

Question: How much icing should I make by icing color?

Hypothesis: It takes approximately 12oz of icing to flood 12 large 4” cookies, 18 medium 3” cookies or 24 small 2” cookies

Tests: I performed 3 separate tests: an average sized project (4 dozen), a large scale project (12 dozen), and a small scale project (1 dozen)

 

TEST ONE:

Double batch of icing and a double batch of dough, 3 basic colors + white pipe and yellow 20-second icing

Separated double batch of icing into containers, approximately 12 ounces for each color.

Time to color! I pulled out a little extra icing for the yellow 20-second and the white piping. You can see that the orange 12oz bottle is only half full as a result.

Approximately 12 oz of icing was enough for 2 tablespoons of piping icing (in bag) and 11 oz of flood icing in bottles.

12 oz of icing covered =
12 Large 4” cookies (the cakes)
18 Medium 3" cookies (the hats)***
24 Small 2” cookies (the gift box)


***The orange icing bottle had about 8 oz of icing and covered 12 Medium 3” cookies, therefore, I estimate that 12 oz of icing would cover about 18 medium 3” cookies.

 

 Take a look at the 12 oz bottles at the end – practically no leftovers! I had to literally scrape the green bottle to finish the last gift box (that might be cutting it a little too close)

 

Test 2

Large Scale Project 12 dozen cookies (6 dozen of a real estate gift and 6 dozen of a housewarming gift)



Materials: 3 double batches of icing and 4 double batches dough (I ended up making 1 more double batch of icing because I realized during mixing I was going to run out). So the final totals were 4 double batches of dough and 4 double batches of icing.

First, I made a list of the cookie designs and the icing colors needed (including shared colors). Next, I estimated how many cookies for each color.

 


Time to make the icing! I made 3 double batches of icing (each approximately 36 oz of icing)

 

 

Then I separated….

 

 

And Colored …

 

 

 

It was at this point that I realized that I did not have enough icing for the 24 Large Real Estate signs (white and brown icing). I made one more double batch of icing. I measured out 24 oz of icing and then split it in half to make the brown and white icing.

 

 

These are the leftovers. As you can see, very little icing remains in the bottles. I overestimated the size of the yellow key and had the most leftover of that color.

 

 

All done!!!  

 

 

 

Test 3

Small scale, 1 dozen cookies, approximate 13-14oz of icing

For my final test, I am going to create 1 dozen cookies with 3 colors

I started with approximately 13-14oz of icing.

 

I separated the icing into equal thirds since I need the same amount for each color.

I mixed my colors, pulling out 2 tablespoons for piping outlines and details. Since I had less icing, I used an 8oz bottle.

 

I like to keep an empty glass on my workspace to flip bottles before flooding.

This amount of icing proved to be the perfect amount. Not much is leftover! The bottles are almost empty!

 

 

Final Analysis:

A few notes from these three initial tests:

  1. I feel confident stating that: with 12 oz of icing, you can decorate: 12 Large cookies, 18 medium cookies, or 24 small cookies.
  2. This process is approximate, making it quick and easy to set up and mix colors.
  3. In all tests, the icing was almost completely gone after decorating. Therefore, a decorator should plan for extras if doing an icing-intense design (lots of ruffles, basketweave, thick icing borders, icing flowers, etc.)
  4. Finally, AND THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT, the more icing colors being mixed, the more icing will be required. For example, when I did the test with a dozen cookies, I started with 14 oz of icing instead of 12 oz since I would need three bags (3 colors) for the piping icing.

Results:

In all three test cases, I was easily able to predict and make the correct amount of icing so that I did not run out or have lots of leftovers!! Hooray!

Setting up plastic containers with markings:

First, using a liquid measuring cup, measure 12 oz of water.

Then pour the water into a plastic container.

Using a sharpie marker, make a note of the 12 oz line (I have run my containers through the dishwasher several times without it washing off).

Add 12 MORE ounces and mark the 24 oz line. This will be helpful for the LARGE cookie projects.

 

For small projects I might also measure out a 4 oz and 8 oz line.  

Overall, I think this method will be helpful for planning how much of each color to make. I’m also excited to use this method in tutorials so that I can confidently help decorators make a specific number of cookies with a specific amount of icing.

Are you NEW to decorating? Check out this video on how to make royal icing!

Happy Decorating!

Anne 

 

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How to Decorate a Ballet Pointe Shoe Cookie

posted Sunday Mar 05, 2017 at 09:20 AM by Anne Yorks — 0 comments

When making dozens of the same cookie favor, it's smart to keep the details balanced. This helps to keep the fun in decorating, but also results in a beautiful cookie favor.

Take these ballet slipper cookies for example. 

I love to pair an easy technique like stenciling with more time-consuming details like roses and scrolls. This creates a beautiful cookie favor, all while keeping the project manageable!  Watch this video and learn how to make a pretty ballet slipper favor.

 

Are you new to decorating? Click here to check out our 'getting started' tutorials for videos on how to make royal icing, piping and flooding, and rolling and baking. Recipes are included in the videos!

See my notes below for successful stenciling on a cookie!

The supplies featured in this video are the ballet slipper stencil, the new LilaLoa plaque, the icing scraper, the flower nail, and tip #101.

A couple notes about making those pretty little flowers. I had to make 216 of those little roses (with the flower nail and tip #101). It took me about and 1 1/2 hours to make them. Then I let them dry overnight before peeling them off the parchment square. I stored the leftovers in a little tupperware so I have them all ready to go the next time I want to add a pretty flower to a cookie.

Here are a few tips for good results when stenciling with royal icing:

1. Use STIFF Icing. This is the icing that comes straight out of the mixer! The icing will hold the shape and won't ooze or smudge into areas it shouldn't be.

2. Gently spread icing with spatula to cover stencil.  I like to allow the base icing layer on the cookies to dry 4-6 hours so I don't poke my finger into the surface of the cookie. I don't push too hard when spreading the icing because I don't want to squish the icing under the stencil.

3. Scrape off excess icing, but don't scrape it clean! So, when you are removing the excess, gently run your spatula or scraper over the stencil. I reuse stencils at least 6-12 times (sometimes more!) before I need to wash and dry the excess icing. If icing gets on the underside of the stencil you'll need to clean that before doing the next cookie.

4. Carefully pull up stencil. Don't wiggle the stencil or it will smudge your image.

5. If there is excess icing on the edges, clean up it up with a scribe, toothpick or fix-it stick.

Looking for more ballet cookie fun? Check out the video tutorial to make this pretty Tutu cookie!

You can learn more about the details of the Tutu cookie on this blog post - click here!

Happy Decorating!!

Anne

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How to Make Quick and Easy Plaid Shamrock and Celtic Knot Cookies

posted Wednesday Mar 01, 2017 at 06:53 AM by Anne Yorks — 0 comments

The last few weeks have been super busy. I have been spending much of my time preparing for CookieCon! CookieCon is a huge cookie convention held March 9-11 in Salt Lake City. I'm teaching three pre-event classes and I can't wait! I hope to post updates throughout the week!

So with all my prep work going on, my tutorials are about making cookies EASY. There is nothing easier than stenciling cookies. It is the best way to add a precise design or pattern QUICKLY!

Check out the video on how to make the Celtic Knot and Plaid Shamrock cookies!

Are you new to decorating? Click here to check out our 'getting started' tutorials for videos on how to make royal icing, piping and flooding, and rolling and baking. Recipes are included in the videos! Plus, check out our Airbrushing 101 video and how to use a Stencil Genie for more tips on airbrushing on cookies. 

Anytime I am airbrushing with a stencil, I use the Stencil Genie. It's a magnetic frame that clicks together and holds the stencil in place while airbrushing. It's a game changer. The results with the genie are so much better.

Here are a few tips for good results when stenciling with royal icing:

1. Use STIFF Icing. This is the icing that comes straight out of the mixer! The icing will hold the shape and won't ooze or smudge into areas it shouldn't be.

2. Gently spread icing with spatula to cover stencil.  I like to allow the base icing layer on the cookies to dry 4-6 hours so I don't poke my finger into the surface of the cookie. I don't push too hard when spreading the icing because I don't want to squish the icing under the stencil.

3. Scrape off excess icing, but don't scrape it clean! So, when you are removing the excess, gently run your spatula or scraper over the stencil. I reuse stencils at least 6-12 times (sometimes more!) before I need to wash and dry the excess icing. If icing gets on the underside of the stencil you'll need to clean that before doing the next cookie.

4. Carefully pull up stencil. Don't wiggle the stencil or it will smudge your image.

5. If there is excess icing on the edges, clean up it up with a scribe, toothpick or fix-it stick.

Here's one more quick look at stenciling with royal icing.

These stencils and more are available in our online shop! 

For more St. Patrick's Day inspiration, check out the free video tutorial page - click here!

Happy Decorating,

Anne

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How to Make a Rainbow Birthday cookie set

posted Wednesday Feb 22, 2017 at 01:50 PM by Anne Yorks — 1 comments

I made these cookies for a very special girl. And, you guys, can I tell you these were so much fun to make!! 

This set features the following Americolor gel pastes: Soft Pink, Bright White, Sky blue, Regal Purple, Leaf Green, Lemon Yellow, and Orange. ALL the cutters are from the new LilaLoa cutter set. See our entire LilaLoa product line - click here!

I just love the cake on stand cookie. Here's a video showing how that one comes together.

Are you new to decorating? Click here to check out our 'getting started' tutorials for videos on how to make royal icing, piping and flooding, and rolling and baking. Recipes are included in the videos!

I have such a soft spot for rainbow details. Do you want to know the secret of this cake....

These were made possible courtesy of the PME tip #1.5. This is the tip that I also like to use for piping text (or even #1 if the text is tiny).

 

Because all that piping was intense, I needed to break up the set with a few 'accent' cookies (or cookies that are easier to make). Like this rainbow Happy Birthday cookie. I used a stencil...can you believe it!?

Here's a quickie Instagram video on how I made it. You'll want to try this. It's cool and easy! 

 

Having fun making rainbow birthday cookies 🌈 💗

A post shared by Flour Box Bakery (@flourboxbakery) on

 

Create this cookie using the Happy Birthday Script Stencil and the Icing Scraper.

Then there is this cake slice. Nom nom nom.

But the cutter that really stole my heart was this tall, skinny present. I just love it like a pig loves mud.

To make those simple loopy bows on top...check out Wilton Tip #44 to make those. Yes, they are as easy as they look.

So now that I have paraded these adorable cookies in front of you, you may wish to check out these cutters for yourself! They all available in the NEW LilaLoa cutter set!! I can wait to try out the rest, like that bird!!!! 

I'd love to hang out and chat more about cookies, but I'm super busy packing and planning to teach at CookieCon in two weeks!!

Happy Decorating,

Anne

 

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