Monday, July 25, 2011

Homemade Cookie Cutters

A few months ago, after seeing a couple of people make their own cookie cutters, I bought one of those make-your-own-cookie-cutter-kits, thinking it would be as easy as they said it was.  Long story wasn't.  I tried to make one of those cute little plaque shapes that are only available as copper cookie cutters, and I'm not yet willing to pay $15-$20 for a single cookie cutter.   About five minutes later I gave up.  I'm really not a quitter.  I'm the type of person who works really hard at something until I master it (like cookie decorating, for example).  After breaking the metal because I bent it the wrong way and then tried to fix it by bending it the other way, I just knew I didn't have the patience for it. 

I think it all has to do with the achiever in me.  According to the strengthfinders test I took years ago when I worked in an office job, achiever is one of my top strengths.  In their description of achiever, they state that achievers tend to not want to do something if they know they can't achieve the goal.  I hate it when those things prove to be exactly right.

Anyway, earlier this month I received an order for luau cookies, and I decided that I had to do a hibiscus flower.  After looking through my cookie cutters and searching all of my favorite cookie cutter retailers, I could not find a cookie cutter that I thought would make a good enough hibiscus flower.  And then I remembered that dreaded kit I bought months ago.  So I gave my husband the prettiest smile I could muster and talked him into doing it. 

And I'm so glad I did, because as much as he really hated doing it and has insisted that he really doesn't want to do it ever again, he did great and I LOVE the way it turned out.  I know I would have lost my patience and given up after the first petal.

I took the opportunity to experiment with the cutter when I made those train cookies a couple of weeks ago, so I just used those colors I had on hand.

It took the longest time to convince him of the fact that it was perfect, but I guess we all judge our own work harsher than others do.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Fleur de Sel Caramel and Vanilla Cream Fondant Spirals

Wow, that's a long name for a candy.  Anyway, I bought the cookbook Sugar Baby a couple of weeks ago and have been dying to try some of the recipes but I wasn't able to find the time until yesterday.  I don't have a whole lot of experience cooking sugar, so I was a little bit nervous about it.  I decided to start off with this recipe for delicious caramel swirled with vanilla bean fondant, both of which require cooking sugar.  It was a lot of work (and oh, the dishes!), but they turned out perfectly and taste delicious! 

You might remember that I mentioned that I had TMJ, and that I just got my braces off that were meant to fix the TMJ.  So today, I really put it to the test.  If I had eaten these two years ago, I would have had immediate jaw pain and that achy jaw feeling for at least a day or two.  Today, after eating two of these (and they're actually pretty big), I feel zero pain!  Thank you, Susie (my orthodontist)!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Train Cookies

My friend Sonja asked me to make some train cookies for her little boy's third birthday party.   So after lots of researching train cookies, I decided to keep the design simple.  The party colors were red, turquoise, light turquoise, and white.

I made a centerpiece cookie also, but by the time I finished all the other cookies I was really tired and too lazy to get out the kopykake, so I just freehanded it.  Which is why it's totally off-center, but for freehand, I didn't think it was too bad.  I wasn't going to include it, but changed my mind at the last minute. 

And my sweetest little creation had a fun time at the party.  (Sorry, I know this blog is supposed to be about cookies and sweets, but I have to throw him in whenever I can.  He's just too cute!)
Happy Birthday, Noah!  I hope you enjoyed the cookies!