Monday, January 30, 2012

Love Letter Cookies

Love can be expressed in a myriad of different methods, but the most timeless and most treasured will always remain the classic love letter.  Of course, I always express my love with cookies so I think these love notes are just perfect.

I made this one for my husband, but I have lots of others to write up, because I’m so lucky to have a lot of loved ones in my life.

Who would you give a love note cookie?  What would you like to write?

And of course, if you would like to order, please send me a note at

Friday, January 27, 2012

Mars Bar Groundhogs

Groundhog Day is February 2nd  – that is this coming Thursday.  According to legend, when the groundhog comes out of its burrow, there will be six more weeks of winter weather if it sees his shadow.  If he does not see his shadow, there will be an early spring.

When you live in a cold climate, predicting the end of winter is a never-ending discussion. 

So I made these Mars Bar Groundhogs and you can too.

Here is how I did it.

Materials Needed for Decorating:
- mini Mars bars
- a few melted chocolate chips
- mini M&M’s – brown for the ears & cheeks
- royal icing eyes
- Wilton Jumbo Confetti Sprinkles – pink for the nose
- royal icing
- chocolate brownie cookies – circle cookie cutters

Instructions and Tips:

To Make the groundhogs.

“Glue” the EARS (mini M&M’s) to the mini Mars bars using a dab of melted chocolate chips.
Use royal icing to attach the eyes, pink nose and cheeks.
Make the teeth with royal icing.

Truth is you can simply stop here.  Use a bamboo skewer and plant the groundhogs in a planter. 

I made round chocolate brownie cookies – two solid and three hollowed out for each groundhog burrow.  I glued the cookies together bottom two are solid and top three are hollowed out.  Filled the cookies with more icing and stuck in the groundhog.

It’s a good activity for the weekend.  If you make them let me know how they turn out.

So far we have not had much of a winter in Toronto.  But I still would not be too unhappy the groundhogs don’t see there shadow and we get an extra early spring.

Happy Groundhogs Day!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Photo Cookies

Today is my brother’s birthday!  It’s a milestone birthday so I thought I would make him some special cookies.  My brother is a great guy with a million hobbies including hiking, skiing, sailing, canoeing, watching the Toronto Maple Leafs, etc...  He is an amazing dad, attentive husband, wonderful son, not-so-mean-anymore older brother and a really nice friend.  I think he deserves some fun cookies for this most auspicious occasion.  

I love the idea of combining pictures and cookies so this gave me the perfect excuse to play around with my new printer with edible ink and frosting sheets.  Lucky that I found this picture of him fishing at the cottage because even today he can often be found at the end of the dock fishing with his kids.  

Much to my surprise when researching the mystery transferring digital images to edible frosting paper I quickly learned that it’s a regular printer that uses edible ink and frosting paper.  There is a list of compatible printers but the list is large and many Canon and Epson printers work.

How cute are these cookies?  I guess I can’t really take credit for these cute pictures of my brother doing some of his favorite things – fishing at the cottage, playing hockey or spending time with his family.  But hey, I made the cookies;)

Here is how I made them.

Materials Needed for Decorating:
- scanned picture on frosting paper
- cookies white iced
- clear corn syrup
- pastry brush
- white royal icing
- white crystal sugar

Instructions and Tips:

Bake and white ice sugar cookies – I used a 3” square or 3” round cookie cutter.

Print image and cut out to size.

Brush cookie with clear corn syrup and carefully place image on cookie.

Pipe a boarder and dip in crystal sugar.  I did each cookie boarder a little different because I liked a simple boarder on the hockey cookie, sugar on the fishing one and scallops or flowers on the family picture.

I love the way these cookies worked out but not as much as I love my brother.  Happy Birthday Gary!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Zara’s Secret Pillow Cookies

A few months ago, I had a cookie decorating party for my friend Sheri’s 12-year-old daughter Zara.  The party was great and the kids made some really fantastic cookies.  I love these parties because I get to show how fun it is to decorate cookies. Kids are excellent at experimenting with techniques and colour so while the teaching is what I really enjoy, I also love that I always learn something from them. So when Sheri told me that Zara wanted to come over bake with me and show me her a Rolo Cookie recipe, I was so excited.  I mean, who wouldn’t be excited to 1. bake with Zara, and 2. bake with Rolos?  Both are awesome.  Zara is really smart, into a million things like dance and baking, little kids and comes with her hilarious brother Jorey.  Rolos are pretty fantastic too -- “chewy caramels in milk chocolate” -- does it get ANY better?  I think not.  And, the whole combo of Zara, Jorey & Rolos (plus Sheri) just means a great time, and the cookies came out super yummy too.  Here is how we made them.  Zara -- thanks so much for sharing!

Cookies the Girls Made

1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2¼ cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
4 52g packages of Rolos (40 pieces) – maybe 5 packages in case of any smooshed Rolos
crystal sugar for rolling the cookies

Preheat oven to 3500.
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter with sugars (brown and white) until light and fluffy.  Beat in egg and vanilla.
Add in flour and baking soda until well blended.

Take about one large tablespoon of dough and form into a cup.

Fit Rolo into centre and shape dough around chocolate.

Roll in sugar (we used crystal sugar) and place on parchment paper-lined baking sheets.
Bake in middle of oven for 12 to 15 minutes until cookies flatten and tops are golden.
Cool on wire racks.
Makes about 36 to 40 cookies.

Truth is the cookies can be filled with just about anything – a Hershey’s Kiss, Hershey’s Bliss Square, a piece of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup… the cookie is a pillow cookie that you can add in your own surprise.  So I have called them Secret Pillow Cookies.  If you make them, let us all know your secret filling.