Baking your sugar cookies: Tips

Hello Everyone, Now you have a delicious cookie recipe and I just wanted to give you a few pointers to ensure that they come out well. Some of this may be obvious to people but some people are not baking inclined and everyone deserves yummy cookies.

Working with the dough:

*It is best to work with dough in small amounts and as fast as you can. When the dough is cold shapes cut cleaner and are easier to transfer to you parchment lined baking sheet.

* Roll out your dough on either parchment paper or a pastry mat to reduce the amount of flour you need to use while rolling, and to prevent sticking.

*Use the 2 pieces of wood 1/4″ thick that we spoke about in the tools post to get a uniform thickness.DSC_0069

* After cutting your shapes and placing them on you baking sheet,put the whole sheet pan in your freezer if your like me and have a drawer style freezer, or your fridgerator. This step is not 100 % required, but I always leave my sheets to cool for about 2-3 minutes. It helps them hold their shape while baking.

Baking Yeahhhh!:

You may have noticed in the recipe that baking time starts at 7 min. and can go all the way up to 12 min! I would like to give you one bake time to make your life as easy as possible, but the truth is that it all depends on your cookie’s size. A mini cookie needs much less time that your 4″ Goose shape!.

*With that in mind only put shapes on a sheet that are about the same size. If they are drastically different in size the small ones will overbake before the larger ones are set.

*Here is a picture of some Cookie bake times. The Mustaches were baked for 7 min, and the Hello Kitty heads and plaques were baked for about 11 min. With practice you’ll get a feel for how long a cookie should bake based on it’s size.

Cookie Bake Times

As you can see the tops aren’t brown like making chocolate chip cookies, Just “set” There is sliqht browning on the tips of the mustaches, but that’s because that area is so delicate, generally as soon as you see any brown on your cookies, pull em’ out they’re done 🙂

Here is a close up of the back of the cookie, just slightly brown is what your going for.

Baked Cookie Back

I hope that answers any questions you may have about baking sugar cookies. Please let me know how they turn out, or any tips or tricks you have of your own!!

Now go bake cookies!
Cheyenne

 

 

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Transferring your design: template method.

Now that I have my camera, my next big purchase will be a kopykake machine. What is a kopykake you say??? Well it is a machine that projects your image, in our case, on to cookies. This allows the user to pipe accurate lines onto their cookies. Right now they run about $200+, a bit out of my price range right now :(.  I want one so bad. If you’d like more information on them or how to use one Marion over at Sweetopia has a very good post on them. Check it out here.

So for now I am using the Template method.

Supplies:

Cookie, if using an iced background make sure it is 100% dry.

edible marker

index cards or cardstock

original sketch

20 second icing

 

Instructions:

1. Sketch out your final design as you would like it to appear on your cookie. I like to do this on tracing paper but I am sure any kind of paper would work.

2. Darken the outside line so it will be easily identifiable, You want just the silhouette of the design.

3. Place your drawing over a index card. then with a pencil or pen firmly trace around your design. remember just the silhouette for now.

4. When you move the tracing paper you will see the outline pressed into your index card. now you can trace over that indent with a pen or pencil so it will be easier to see. Cut out your shape.

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5. After you do the Silhouette template, stop and refer back to your design. Is there anything else that you want to be 100 % accurate or you are not confident about free handing?? Only the important design elements not everything or you’ll drive yourself nuts!

In this case I really liked the shape of his face and wanted to be accurate. so I repeated the same procedure as above except with just the inner shape of his face.

DSC_0185 All of the other details will be freehanded.

6. Now simply place your template on your cookie and trace with your edible marker. (It’s not in the picture but trace your face also)

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Don’t have any edible markers handy? Well then use a needle or pin to scratch into your dried icing.  It is a little harder to see but if you have an unsteady hand or you are worried about your marker lines showing, using the scratching method will leave your tracing lines almost invisible. ( This little guy is a penguin)

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7. Now outline and fill just like normal.

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8. Now stand back and enjoy your beautiful Cookies!

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If you have any good tips or tricks for transferring your designs I would love to hear them! This works well but can be a bit time consuming if you have to do it on many cookies and many different designs. I tried to simply let the edible ink bleed through my tracing paper onto the cookies but no luck 😦

Happy Cookying!

Cheyenne