Nothing gets me going like a good recipe and a new dish to bake. The planning, the excitement when the dish looks like its working out, the joy of seeing my family and friends gobble it up and eagerly looking forward to what I can bake next, everything about baking makes me happy (the messy kitchen counter top aside :p) Here's a peek into my kitchen, my cooking, my wonderland.

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Spooks in a teacup

Spooks in a teacup
I'm going all out on Halloween cookies. Yes, we don't celebrate Halloween in India, but when you get a chance to make cute lil monster cookies, you take it. I chanced upon this idea long back from a picture I had saved some time ago. But not wanting to just give credit to an unknown picture, I dug deeper as I wanted to credit the idea to the rightful owner and after trawling around, I found her. The inspiration behind these cuties is from Meaghan Mountford and her delightful blog - The Decorated Cookie. If you haven't heard of her, head over to her blog by clicking on the link above and go ogle at her creations like I do. But wait, only on one condition. That you come back to my post. My family of spooks in a tea cup need your tender loving care :)
Spooks in a row

These cookie sticks are so easy that you could do them as a last minute Halloween idea. Just be prepared for family to just stare at them and not want to eat them. I know Halloween is supposed to be filled with scary monsters but try as I might, I cant get these to look scary. They look better looking as cute as a button. And if that weren't enough, I made them their very own family. Mamma spook, Pappa spook and two little spooklings who say Boo in unison. Ok, now before I die of cute overload, 

Here's what you will need:

  •  Cookie dough (You can use shortbread or sugar cookie dough for this). Here's a link to a good shortbread cookie recipe
  • Royal icing and Royal icing candy eyes. You can find my recipe for both here 
  • Food colouring of your choice
  • Piping bags
  • Candy flowers (optional)
Prepping mummy spook
  • Roll out your cookie dough and cut out strips of cookie, approximately 4 inches long and half to 3/4th inch wide.
  • Chill them for about ten minutes in the fridge.
  • Bake the cookies at 180 C for about ten minutes till the sides are slightly browned.
  • Once the cookies are cool, put some royal icing in your piping bag, snip off the end and pipe random squiggles for the mummy cookie. Refer to the pic on the right for instructions. You basically pipe diagonal lines all the way down and then the opposite side. Once that's done, drop in two candy eyes and leave to dry. Viola, you have your mummy cookie.
  • For the Dotted daddy, drop in thick dots of icing in any random pattern in your choice of colour and drop in two eyes on the top and leave to dry.
  • For the swirly baby, again, pipe swirls, going from the right to left or vice versa. Drop in eyes and leave to dry. Add candy flowers to some if you want to, or leave them as they are.
The family that spooks together sticks together
You can experiment with different colours and designs. Let me tell you an little secret. Spook cookies are messy little things, so this is something even someone with no cookie decorating experience can do. The messier the better, it adds more character to your cookies. So put on your baking gloves and bake and decorate these 'boo'tiful cookies.

Happy Halloween in advance to you'll and go ahead, Get, Set, Bake!...

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Baby shower cookies

Baby carriage cookies
Lately, I've begin to love making itty bitty cookies and more so, baby shower cookies. The lil onesies, the baby pram and the cute as a teacup baby bottles, they invoke an aww from just about anybody, guys included. So here are a few simple designs for baby shower cookies. 
Hand-cut baby bottle cookies

Inspirations are countless, from catalogues, to pictures of onesies, to the hundreds of pictures available online. I tend to keep it simple, so if you want to start off with baby shower cookie designs, these are perfect for you.

What you will need: 
Polka dotted onesies

  • A sugar cookie in the shape of baby shower themes. Use any sugar cookie recipe and use baby shower cutters to cut out the desired shape and bake them.
  • Royal icing. You can find the recipe from my previous posts here.
  • Piping bags and tips or ziplock bags.
  • Separate your icing into different bowls, according to the number of colours you need and mix in the colours accordingly. Keep a larger amount for the base colours and slightly lesser for the colours that you will outline the cookies with.
  • Start off with a base coat of icing in the colour of your choice. Flood the entire cookie and let it dry. if you want to add polka dots that don't stand out, like in the polka dotted onesies pic, add the dots in another colour before this dries.
  • Once it's dry, use a #1 tip with your piping bag or snip off the end of a zip lock into a tiny hole and pipe out outlines, following the edges of the cookie.
  • Add a few dots and zig zags along the way to add to the design. Be creative here and try your hand at different patterns. Don't worry, if you don't like what you made, save it to gobble up later and try again.  
  • That's it, that's how simple they can be. Leaving you with a few pictures of what I have done to inspire you to start cookie'n. 

Baby bottles
Baby onesies

Packed and ready to go to an expecting mommy

So what are you waiting for, Get, Set, Bake!!