First, my cookies. I am becoming obsessed with cookie decorating. I have been using one sugar cookie recipe for a couple of years, but only recently have I been trying to perfect my royal icing skills. I have been accumulating all kinds of toys for decorating - so it's becoming like paper crafting. I have the stuff, so I just need an excuse to bake!
So. The icing. Well, let's pretend that I meant for the icing to look like honed marble. Let's pretend that I wanted them to look like they were crafted from stone. Um... I didn't. In fact, for 2 days they were perfectly smooth and beautiful. But it has been incredibly muggy here, which really affected how the icing dried. So, it doesn't bother me, because there is really nothing I could do about it (or - if there was, I plead rookie and I didn't know about it...)
I made 2 shapes - our national emblem, the maple leaf - and hearts. When my hubby saw the hearts, he just could not figure out how that had anything to do with Canada. I told him to be patient!
I started with lining my cookie in red (20 second icing), and then once that dried a bit, I flooded them with the same colour (5 - 8 second icing). Then I left them overnight, and came back and did the white outline and detail. Looks pretty good, eh? (*wink*)
Yes, we really do use that word. A lot. It's very handy, and I don't know how non-Canadians fill it's void.
On the cookie and baking blogs that I follow, they often feature a platter of cookies, complete with a title cookie. I had to try that out - and look how cool it looks! I didn't have a cutter nearly that big, so I took a tiny little one, cut 6 cookies, and baked them together - the seams that didn't really take well, I just glued together with my 20 second frosting.
Then I went to my cake supply store and bought myself a smaller tip so my writing would look better next time.
Now... the cupcakes.
Did you know that McDonald's no longer has chocolate ice cream? Me neither. I tried to order some for my little one, and the girl said they don't use it anymore. Um... how the heck do you do a twist cone without chocolate? I shouldn't have been surprised... I worked for the Golden Arches many moons ago, and we did not sell much in the way of chocolate ice cream.
Why am I going on about this? Well, remember when you were a kid, and the twist cone was nothing short of brilliant? And how you just couldn't figure out how they could put two completely different kinds of ice cream right beside each other? (okay, so it was just me. I am okay with that.)
Check this out:
I know, right?! When I saw this one online, I was smitten. And I knew it had to happen for our yearly BBQ.
Sometimes I impress myself, I won't lie. The truth is, I thought they were going to be a bust. I figured I wouldn't get it just right, and it would turn into a pink mess.
But they didn't.
And I also wanted to make the insides resemble our national colours as well:
I *did* layer the red, white, red... but I had too much of my first layers, so the top ended up just marbling a bit. And I know a well mixed cupcake doesn't have a giant air bubble right in the middle. Doesn't matter, I am still happy with the results!!
So here are some footnotes. You'll notice the cookie icing is still quite pink, but that my cupcake icing came out nice and red. If you want red icing, you *must* invest in some Americolor Super Red gel food colouring. I used what I had left in two different Wilton red pastes for the cookies, and added so much that the icing now has a slightly bitter flavour. And they're still pink. It took only a couple of drops of the Americolor, and look at that gorgeous icing - and this was before they had time to darken (most colours will darken over time)!
Also... can I just show you how much of a difference some blog surfing and education can make in one's skills? These are the cookies I made for Canada Day last year... same cutter, same cookie... but I piped them with buttercream... amateur.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY CANADA!
We are such proud Canucks on our family, we love this holiday, and the excuse to do all things red and white.
And to my American friends... Happy Fourth! I doubt I'll be posting before Monday, but it's a lot of fun that we can celebrate our birthdays together this weekend!