Monday, September 19, 2016

Cookie Decorating Class

I think it's important to always be learning. I love watching Food Network shows to learn about cooking. I think it's event better to take classes. So, I am taking out some cooking and baking classes. My first class was a pasta class. My second class was cake decorating. Then, I took a 3-part cooking class. This was my second dessert class to take. I took a cookie decorating class at a local bakery and baking store.

We had about 30 students in the class. There was one instructor and one helper. The instructor provided us with a packet that included the cookie recipe, royal icing instructions, and some basic decorating techniques. We learned how to decorate cookies using royal icing and fondant.

Here's our set up. The cookies are baked and cooled. The icing for outlining is in a bag with a small tip. The flooding icings are colored and in squeeze bottles. One of the cookies is iced, flooded, and dry, so we can add decorations. And, we had buttercream icing in an icing bag fitted with a star tip.

When decorating cookies, start by outlining your cookies with outlining icing.

I really like this technique we used for the cupcake liners on the cupcake cookies. Flood the cookie in alternating colors. Then use a toothpick or scribing tool and drag the icing int horizontal stripes to make the design. 

I practiced new techniques with buttercream icing. We learned a zigzag, star, and rosette techniques.

Combining this technique makes a visually interesting and yummy cookie.

We flooded the middle of a flower and used yellow nonpareils to decorate the center of the flower. 

Then, make dots around the flower to completely cover the cookie.

To make the sandal cookie, pipe border icing and flood with a light pink royal icing. Use edible markers to make a design on the sandal.

Pipe small circles and add a sugar decoration to complete the sandal.

This fish cookie was so quick and simple to decorate. Put two colors of flooding consistency royal icing into shallow plates. I used yellow and orange. Dip a sea sponge made for crafts into the icing and lightly sponge onto cookie. Start with the lighter color, the yellow. Let the icing dry. Then, lightly sponge your second color on the cookie. I used orange. Use royal icing to adhere the candy eye on the fish for expression.

This was the fastest technique for cookie decorating. And, I love the result! Start with two shades of pre-made fondant. I used white with a little navy to make the lighter color. Kneed the the light blue and navy together to marbleize the patterned. Roll to 1/8 inch with a fondant roller. Use the cookie cutter to cut out the fondant to the cookie's shape. We used piping gel to adhere the fondant to the cooled cookie. Use the fondant roller to gently roll and stretch the fondant to the size and shape of the cookie. Use royal icing to adhere the eye. Use the larger end of an icing tip to make indentions in the fondant to represent the shark's gills.

I love this shark cookie. I love the marbleized color of the fondant and sharp edges. I think it looks professional. Some people do not like the taste of fondant; it is sweet. I think fondant tastes like marshmallow, so I don't mind it.

I tried decorating cookies with royal icing once before taking this class. There was a learning curve, so here are my helpful tips for successfully decorating iced cookies. Here are my six tips for successful cookie decorating.

1) Completely cool your cookies before decorating, or the icing will melt

2) Cover your prepared royal icing because it will dry out. 
-  If you are coloring your icing, divide it into container and cover with plastic wrap.
-  Keep a damp paper towel over the tips of your icing bags or squeeze bottles.

3) Use a toothpick or scribe tool to get air bubble out of your cookies.

4) Allow your icing to dry for 24 hours before stacking.

5) Practice on a piece of wax paper or parchment paper. When you learn a new skill, there is a learning curve. Most people are not experts when they start something new. That's why we practice. I love watching YouTube videos or videos on Instagram. Then, you can learn a new skill and practice at home.

6) Have fun decorating!

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