Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Texas, Our Texas

There is something about being Texan that very few others experience. I'm not saying we're better or worse (okay, some Texans are totally better or worse people) but it's a unique and distinguishing identity. Texans are a proud people. I was raised with the endless mantra of how beautiful and separate and special Texas was. We moved to Alaska when I was 10 and brought the pride all the way here. You can never take the Texas out of a Texan.

In search of cookie ideas, I stumbled on some University of Texas themed cooks and, being my alma mater, I fell in love. I started planning Longhorns and little states and the Hook 'Em hand sign. Just as I was about to order the special cutters online, my birthday rolled around and my mom got me a set of Texas-themed cutters. It included this huge 5 x 5 state and I knew I had to make it ASAP. The Horns would have to wait!

I found these beautiful designs from Deb's Crafty Cookies and the search was over. I can't thank her enough for sharing the lovely design with us all!

These are the little Texases I had from who knows where. I love finding cutters I forgot I had!

Then came the search for bluebonnets. Now, again, as a Texan, fields of wild bluebonnets are such a staple in the land we're raised on that every time I see them now, my heart just swells. It's hard to describe. It's like looking at your childhood home and it brings up every safe and happy memory you ever had. So looking through bluebonnet pictures might have been my favorite part of this exercise.

I'm happy with how they turned out.  I stuck to Sweet Sugar Belle's sugar cookie recipe and, my favorite because it's been so good to me, Lizy B Bakes' royal icing recipe.

Now on to the next theme... Here's a hint: he's got a movie coming out verrrry soooooon... (spins a web, any size, catches thieves just like flies...)

Monday, May 14, 2012

Cookies for Mom

My mom specifically told me not to buy her anything for Mother's Day. I mostly acquiesced; I'd already bought her a card. But I know she likes the cookies I bring over for Sunday brunches so I made a batch just for her.

I also usually get her flowers so I decided on cookie roses instead of real ones.  These'll last longer (in the freezer)!

Happy (Belated) Mother's Day, to all moms!

Sunday, May 13, 2012


There's a moment when you're decorating that you survey your work and just throw up your hands and call it a loss.  I pretty much did that with these cookies but I have a pretty legit source for my frustration. The god of mischief has struck, determined that I not render him in cookie form. I guess he's not keen on being devoured by mortals.

First, I found these adorable action figures and immediately decided I wanted to make them into cookies.  I quickly realized they'd be the most difficult design I'd ever attempted and grew wary... Almost dreading the decorating, to be honest.  But I'd committed myself (and already made the cookies) so I couldn't back out.  So I went into it with trepidation.

But to back up really quick, as I'm mixing the dough, adding the flour to make it come together, my poor Kitchenaid starts straining with some severity. I turn it off, only to see the pin holding the head to the base almost completely worked out. I try to maneuver it back in place - hell, I took a hammer to it (not Mjolnir, unfortunately) - and still nothing.  And suddenly I realized what happened.

UGH. FINE. See if I make your cookies again, prankster!! (JK; I love you!)

So he broke my mixer.  I borrow my mom's to make the icing and decide to try a new recipe that looks super simple from the popular blogger's video. I make the colors and sit down to decorate and it is absolutely WAY too thick. I don't understand; it looked fine in the bowls! I give up and wait a day, go back and thin all the colors and start over.  Slightly better but now it's almost too thin! UGH, THIS ICING IS TOO FICKLE. And then I realized...

By the end of this whole ordeal, I'd mostly given up. They didn't come out as I'd wished but I've learned some things: that freakin icing is not for me.  And if designs look difficult from the word go, they're going to be freakin hard.

My one amusement from this batch was this.  The multiples of Loki!  It makes me laugh.  So many Lokis!  Which one is real?  I'll never not fall for that, right, Thor?

See the icing consistency from the first try (on the lightning) and the second day, after thinned on Mjolnir? 

Mjolnir turned out to be my favorite.  I used an edible marker/pen to detail it so it's the only one with any definition.  I attempted to detail Thor and Loki's helmets as well and they came out junk so I nixed that quick.