Just when I think I’m past the worst of my cookie-goofing days, I make a batch of jacked up Easter Egg cookies that remind me I’m no Cookie Boss just yet. Though tempted to eat all evidence, I decided that it would be a lot more fun to showcase my goofed up cookies and some lessons learned. One caveat: Including making not-so-cute cookies, my photos are incredibly bad because I couldn’t get my fancy new camera to take a decent pic with indoor lighting at night. C’est la vie!
1. Keep it simple. This doesn’t mean you can’t make an intricate cookie. It means that last weekend I tried to make 7 different designs from one batch of cookies and it was a big ol’ flop. I imagined a spring cookie series called “5 Easter Eggs from One Batch of Cookies”, or something like that. Basically, I’d show how you can make a lot out of a little. That idea is probably still true if you’re really good. I’m really okay. I should keep it simple. Thus, instead of having a couple of designs that I loved, I had a bunch of cookies that I was medium about.
2. Don’t try to bake cookies, make royal icing, and decorate all in the same day… unless you’re really good… which, as we’ve established, I’m really okay. Yesterday, I felt ahead of the game as I was able to prep the cookie dough, roll and cut my cookies, and bake ’em up all in one afternoon while Quinn flipped through some magazines. Good stuff! Why not go ahead and make icing and decorate that night? Here’s why: I found myself cutting corners and not being terribly careful. Cookie burn-out! Too much cookie in a day. I ended up goofing up a bunch and being a sloppy decorator. Just wanting to finish. Where’s the fun in that?
3. Keep toddlers away when decorating. This morning I was adding some final touches to my cookies when Quinn ran over and gave me a big hug. Adorably cute, but bad news for a chick that got smashed. Sigh.
4. Don’t under-flood cookies. A few cookie batches ago, nearly ran out of royal icing before finishing up cookies I was bringing to a party as favors. I was scarred by that and am now nervous about running out of icing. Bad move! Under flooded cookies look sad and lumpy. Look at this sad soul.
6. If you need a dry cookie surface, wait longer than you think. In my wild decorating blitz, I figured that the cookies I had flooded an hour before must have already dried. On this cookie, I added white decorative piping on top and sprinkled sanding sugar over top, imagining that it would only stick to the white. Wrong. It stuck to the whole cookie except for one corner. I, therefore, couldn’t even pass it off as a sparkly cookie. Just another goof.
7. Don’t get grouchy when you goof up. There is an upside to flopping your sugar cookies: too ugly to give as gifts! Woo woo!