Sugar cookies, baseball, and summer holidays

Summertime in the Phoenician desert means everything melts. In this sense, cake making takes a summer holiday and I end up baking other sweets that aren’t as sensitive to the heat (sorry, buttercream-dressed-cakes; see ya later, modeling chocolate decorations, ’til October, fluffy ganache fillings). Sugar cookies are a great alternative- they don’t take that long to bake (hence I’m not running my oven for hours), they hold up well in the heat, and the royal icing actually dries faster in the dry, hot summer air.

Along with the summer lull in caking, I notice a simultaneous lull in sports, thanks to my resident sports expert. Baseball is the only one of the “four major sports” that runs through the summer.

So, why not mix the two in a baking project?

I have a sizable group of friends who pledge sports loyalty to Detroit and their teams, having moved from Michigan. One of them, Melissa, was having a birthday and I wanted to give her something, so I had Matt help me make some Detroit Tigers jersey cookies:

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Miguel Cabrera, anyone?

IMG_3675The Tiger’s “D” & my man Chet Lemon.

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I had to make my other non-sports cookies, of course. My sister gave me 101 cookie cutters, so I had to put them to good use. An airplane, a fish, a mason jar with a flower, a doughnut, and some dinos 🙂

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I had to make a nerdy dino, of course. When the opportunity presents itself…

IMG_3686Individually wrapped in cellophane baggies- always a nice touch and convenient for transport!

IMG_3696I might add that I use the sugar cookie recipe from Sweet Sugar Belle and also learned from her royal icing tips. She’s an expert at this stuff and a sugar cookie genius! I love it, definitely stop by and check out her site.

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Happy Easter! And Go Redwings!

Ashamedly, this blog has fallen to the wayside for about a year- I found this draft from Easter 2014, and it’s almost Easter again! Naturally, life has been crazy- but better late than never! I’m determined to back-blog all of the baking projects from the past 10 months or so. My apologies if they aren’t all chronological- for the most part it won’t matter unless they are holiday related 🙂

Let’s pick up where I left off… We had a picnic on Easter to hang out and enjoy the day, and I wanted to bring some dessert. Cookies seemed like the most robust option to hold up on a hot day, so sugar cookies and macarons it was!

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Getting some sugar cookie dough rolled out and shaped!

DSCN0310A lovely volunteer hand model…

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All baked and ready for the royal (icing) treatment!

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An assortment of Easter themed decorated cookies…

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I was having a little fun with my new mason jar cookie cutter 🙂

I might add that this was around the Stanley Cup playoffs. Naturally my resident Red Wings fan had to make a few hockey-related cookies:

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A Red Wings hockey jersey!

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And… this is me getting a “sports education…” The ugly sweater is a lucky sweater belonging to Georgetown’s basketball coach. That’s basically all I picked up. Either way, I liked it for the cool retro vibe and colors ;).

On to macarons!

This was my first time making macaron shells- it was reasonably successful. I made plain shells with Nutella buttercream frosting for the filling. I used the recipe for the shells from Bravetart, as I have been avidly reading baking blogs and stumbled across hers.

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I found that parchment paper worked best for my needs (I had tried using a silicon mat with the little indented circles, those did not work at all for me). Also, I probably should invest in better cookie sheets.    IMG_3091

The tiny sandwich cookies make me so happy, and I have no idea why.

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I was proud at how they turned out for my first time- but I caught the “perfecting macaron” fever! More to come on that.

IMG_3095Happy Easter 🙂

Red Egg and Ginger Party!

I had the pleasure of making sugar cookies for a Red Egg and Ginger party for the little Miss Selah, Aletheia and Josiah’s beautiful daughter. A Red Egg and Ginger party is a Chinese tradition for newborns, typically occurring one month after they are born to celebrate and welcome them. Eggs are a symbol of fertility and red is a color of good luck, so hard boiled eggs are typically dyed red and present as a symbol at the party.

Aletheia wanted to send all of her guests home with a lucky red egg favor, so asked me to make red egg cookies with a little “S” and heart on them, in gold. IMG_2914I outlined and flooded the egg shaped sugar cookies with red royal icing.

IMG_2917After drying, I added a little “s” and heart.

DSCN0277A tin of cookies!

IMG_2923 All packaged and ready for the favors.

Welcome, little Selah! 🙂