April Fools’ Day Breakfast!

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Next to decorating cookies, making dessert look like savory food is one of my favorite things to do, which is why this April Fools’ Day breakfast made entirely of cake, cookies, and frosting was so much fun for me to create! I don’t know why, but this amuses me more than most things. You can see last year’s April Fools’ Day meal here.April-Fools-Day-Breakfast

Here’s what you’ll need for this project:

  • Boxed white cake mix (I used Betty Crocker, but you can use your favorite) baked in a 9×5″ loaf pan
  • White frosting (again, Betty Crocker, but any creamy frosting will do)
  • Oatmeal cookies (I used a bagged mix to make my oatmeal cookies)
  • Wilton black sugar sparkles
  • Cocoa powder
  • Corn syrup
  • Yellow and red food coloring
  • Brushes for dusting and applying corn syrup

Watch the video for instructions on how to make this April Fools’ Day breakfast:

Click here to learn how to make an April Fools’ Day Lunch!

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Royal Icing Bows And Hearts!

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Before I left for Japan earlier this month, I wanted to make something cute and delicious to bring to my hosts and class organizers, Yuki of Creative Edibles by Yuki and her partner Keiko of Sugar Sugar. I made these royal icing bows using the transfer method and dusted them with a little bit of pink pearl dust before placing them on the heart cookies. I think they really enjoyed them! You can see photos of my trip by clicking here.Bows

-Here’s what you’ll need for this project:

Colors:

Watch the video below to learn how to decorate these heart cookies with royal icing bows:

Right-click on the bow template to save it to your computer so that you can print it out. Bow-Template3

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Photos From My Trip To Japan!

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I just returned home after spending nearly two weeks in Japan. My friend Yuki of CEY Japan, her assistants, and her partner Keiko of SugarSugar Japan did an amazing job of organizing everything from my accommodations, transportation, and of course, my classes! I couldn’t have asked for better hosts! Here are some photos from my trip.

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1) Mount Fuji as seen from the Shinkansen (high speed train) between Tokyo and Kobe.

2) A visit to Asakusa on a rainy day. It was beautiful!

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3 & 4) Our gorgeous classroom in Kobe and the restaurant downstairs where we had an amazing eight-course meal. The owner of the restaurant is also an incredibly talented wedding dress and floral designer. You can see her work here.

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5 & 6) Classes in Kobe

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7) Class in Kawasaki

8) My demo cookies from our classes

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9) Cookie designs for lessons 1 through 4. Each class was four hours.

10) Cookie designs from the 8 hour master Course.Japan3Japan2

11) Beautiful cupcakes from my student Yuu of Cupcakes By Yuyu

12) Kawaii sushi rolls from Chocokuma

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13, 14, 15 & 16) The stores in Japan are filled with so many cute and pretty things! I shopped a lot on my days off.

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17) A chandelier inside a store in the Harajuku neighborhood in Tokyo (my favorite place!)

18) This beautiful rose was carved from soap by my student Yuki Manabe. You can see more of her amazing work on her blog.

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19) The wallpaper of the classroom in Kobe. So much cookie inspiration everywhere!

20) One of the cookies we made in the Master Course in Kobe using the wet on wet technique

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21) Sunrise over Tokyo.Japan29

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22) A delicious Japanese meal cooked by my friends in Kobe on my last night in Japan. It was the perfect way to end my trip!Japan33

Thank you so much to everyone for making my visit so enjoyable. I hope to return one day!

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Cherry Blossom Tree Cookies {and my upcoming trip to Japan}

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I made these cherry blossom tree cookies in honor of my upcoming trip to Japan in March. I think it will be too early in the season to actually see the blossoms while I’m there, so these cookies will have to do for now! My friend Yuki of Creative Edibles by Yuki has organized 10 cookie decorating classes that I will teach over the course of two weeks in Kawasaki and Kobe. I’ll return to New York on March 16th. I’ve never been to Japan, but I’ve always wanted to visit, so I’m very happy that Yuki invited me!

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Here’s what you’ll need for this project:

Colors:

Watch the video below for the tutorial on how to decorate these cherry blossom cookies:

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See you when I get back!

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ButtonHave you taken a Craftsy class yet? When you sign up for any of their 600+ classes, your access never expires. They even offer a 100% money back guarantee if you’re not satisfied. If you’re new to Craftsy, click here to check out some of their free resources including cake decorating classes, recipes, and PDF tutorials. Happy baking!

Wedding Cake Cookies With Wafer Paper Roses

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I’ve spent the last few weekends rolling and painting dozens of coffee filters to turn them into roses for my wedding centerpieces (one of many wedding projects inspired by searching Pinterest). You can see photos of this ambitious project on my Instagram feed (I didn’t do it all alone, of course. Thanks to my friend Tara for contributing a few box-fulls!) I applied this same technique to make these edible wafer paper roses. Wafer-Paper-Rose3

I’d never worked with wafer paper before and I discovered that it is not nearly as flexible as coffee filters are. In fact, it is quite brittle! I had to dampen the paper a little bit before rolling to keep the paper from cracking. You’ll see all of that in the video below.

Here’s what you’ll need for this project:

Colors:

Watch the video below for the tutorial on how to make these wedding cake cookies with edible wafer paper roses:

When you dampen the paper with the water, be careful not to go overboard. If you apply too much water, the paper will start to dissolve and become very sticky (as I learned the hard way)!

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Keep an eye out for more of my DIY wedding projects on Instagram!

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How To Decorate Owl Cookies!

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These brightly colored owl cookies are made from one of the many cookie cutters that I picked up during my last trip to NY Cake in Manhattan. On a side note, I recently found out that this pretty paper doily was designed by my cousin Cullen at Anna Griffen. Pretty neat, right?Owl-Cookies2

Here’s what you’ll need to make these owl cookies:

Colors:

Watch the video below for the step-by-step tutorial:

If you’re worried about your colors bleeding into each other when piping with bold shades, read this post for information on how to prevent it from happening (scroll down to the section on troubleshooting tips).

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There are a few spots available in the class with guest instructor Mimi Fix on how to start your own baking business from home. Click here for more information and to reserve your spot. Hope to see you there!Home-Baking-Business-Flyer2

How To Make A Cookie Bouquet

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If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably seen a few of the wedding projects that I’ve been working on lately. All of those fabric flowers and coffee filter roses inspired me to make a royal icing “ribbon rose” cookie bouquet. You can watch the full tutorial in action in my YouTube videocookieflower2

Here’s what you’ll need for this project:

Colors:

  • Peach: Wilton Buttercup Yellow + a touch of Aster Mauve from the Garden Tone Set
  • Pink: Wilton Aster Mauve + a touch of Buttercup Yellow
  • Green: Wilton Juniper Green, also from the Garden Tone Set 

Start out by piping leaves all the way around the bottom edge of the cookies with green stiff consistency icing and a tip 352.

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Pipe a mound of white stiff consistency icing with a tip 12. Flower-cookie3

Place a cookie stick into the mound of icing and allow it to dry completely (I let mine sit overnight just to be safe).Flower-cookie4

Now the cookie sticks can be used the same way you would use a flower nail. While spinning the cookie stick between your thumb and forefinger, pipe a ruffle all the way around the edge of the cookie with pink (or peach) stiff consistency icing and a tip 101. The wide end of the tip should be on the surface of the cookie and the narrow end should be facing up and out. Watch my YouTube video to see this process in action.Flower-cookie5

Continue to pipe ruffles until you reach the center of the cookie. These ruffles could be piped in buttercream rather than royal icing if you prefer. Flower-cookie6

Flower-cookie7Fill the empty space in the middle with a dot of white stiff consistency icing, using the number 12 tip.Flower-cookie8

If you’d like to add a pearl finish to the flower center, mix a little bit of white pearl dust with a few drops of alcohol or flavored extract in a palette or small dish. Apply it to the white icing using a soft round brush. For more on this technique, read this post on painting with pearl dust.

Arrange the flowers in a vase or jar filled with granulated or sparkling sugar. The sugar helps to hold the flowers in place and allows you to easily rearrange them. I wrapped this mason jar in burlap and lace (Pinterest wedding idea, of course) to display my cookie bouquet. cookieflower4

Take my cookie decorating class online! Click on the banner for 25% off:Banner-728x90-resized

Mini Donut Cookies!

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I recently hosted a giveaway with Petite Four Miniatures jewelry, which inspired me to make these mini donut cookies. Two of my very favorite things are tiny foods and donuts, so this was inevitable.  Donut-Cookies7
Rather than baking my usual cookie recipe and decorating it with royal icing, I decided to try something different. I wanted these mini donut cookies to look as realistic as possible, so I needed a cookie dough that was soft enough to be piped out of a decorating tip to give it dimension and also hold its shape in the oven. I threw some ingredients together and the end result looked a lot like a pâte à choux (the dough that’s used to make eclairs and cream puffs). But, unlike eclairs and cream puffs, these little cookies are crunchy. Scroll down for the full recipe.
The icing is made with a simple mixture of powdered sugar and water. I added some cocoa powder for the chocolate glaze and a dab of Wilton pink gel paste food coloring to make the pink glaze. 
Here’s the full list of supplies that you’ll need for this project. 
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“Cookie Donut” Dough
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
Place the sugar and egg into a bowl and mix well. Add the melted butter and vanilla extract. Once the wet ingredients are combined, add the flour and baking powder and continue to mix until the dough is smooth. 
Pipe the dough out onto parchment lined baking sheets with a round tip 10 for donuts, eclairs, cinnamon buns and Boston cream and use a star tip 21 to pipe crullers. The donuts should be about 1 to 1-1/2″. I noticed that the dough took on an oily appearance after a while, so try to move as quickly as possible once the dough is in the piping bag. I’m sure there is a way to resolve the problem of oily dough, but the cookies came out of the oven just as I wanted, so I didn’t go back and experiment with the recipe. 
Bake the cookies at 350F for 10 to 12 minutes or until light golden brown around the bottom edges. Allow the cookies to cool completely before decorating.
Donut Glaze
Combine 1/2 cup confectioners sugar with 2-3 teaspoons of water. Add pink gel paste food coloring to some of the white glaze to make pink glaze. To make chocolate glaze, combine 1/2 cup confections sugar with 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder plus 3-4 teaspoons of water. 
Decorate the donut cookies with a tip 2 according to the instructions in the video.
Happy baking!
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Class Update
All of my cookie decorating workshops through the spring are sold out, but there’s still space left in this class on how to start a baking business from home with guest instructor Mimi Fix. I took this class when I first started my business and it was so informative and helpful. Click here for more information and to reserve your spot!
For now, Mimi is only teaching this class in person and it’s not available online. If you can’t make it, you can find Mimi’s books on the subject on her website
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Valentine’s Day Panda Bear Cookies!

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Panda bear cookies are cute, but I think they’re even cuter with heart bows and heart garlands!Pandas-Resized
Here’s what you’ll need for this project:
 Watch the video below to see how to decorate these panda bear cookies:
If you’re concerned about color bleed while using black and white icing, read this post on royal icing troubleshooting tips to learn how to prevent it. 

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 Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Learn To Start A Home-Based Baking Business With Guest Instructor Mimi Fix

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When I first started decorating cookies several years ago, I desperately wanted to open my own shop so that I could legally sell my baked goods to the pubic. Like so many cake and cookie decorators, I was baking out of my apartment kitchen and I didn’t think that I had the means to open a legitimate business selling cookies and I had no idea about cottage food laws. All of that changed when I came across an ad for a class taught by Mimi Fix of Baking Fix. Mimi’s class on how to start a home-based baking business made me realize that having a legitimate biz was attainable for someone like me.
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While I didn’t end up going the route of having a home-based business, I did learn enough about the commercial end of it to be able to open a small shop that was just big enough for me to bake and decorate. After taking this class, the process of opening my own baking business seemed way less daunting. And now I know that if I ever want to give up the shop and go back to baking from home, I have that option. 
My business has changed a lot since those first days, but Mimi’s class is what gave me the push I needed to get started. 
Click here for more information on this class and to reserve your spot. If you can’t make it in person, Mimi has books on the subject available on her website.