Mario, Luigi, & A Few Items You Can Grab Along The Way.

My son decided that he wanted to have a Mario themed birthday this year. I had already done Mario cookies, so I was feeling pretty confident about making them again… and the cupcakes. The wheels in my head were turning and I started sketching out the cookies I wanted to do. I asked my son, “Of the one’s off this paper, which cookies do you want me to make?” Not a smart move.  He choose almost all of them. But, they were so cute that I kind of wanted to try them all anyway. Maybe that is why I wound up making too many cookies. I wanted to have enough of each character. If I only made one batch of dough, there would have only been about 6 of each character. I didn’t want to be the cause of some upset kid (or adult…lol) because someone ate all the stars and they didn’t get to have one. Anyway, I learned my lesson…152 iced cookies later.

Bowser Castle CupcakesSo, let’s talk cupcakes. I wanted the cupcakes to look super cool. I looked at a few ideas online, but most of them had characters on top of the cupcake. Which would have been pretty cool, but costly. Instead, another “that’s perfect” moment happened. I decided to do the end flagpole scene when you clear a course on a Super Mario game. It took me a couple of days to cut out, draw, and tape the cupcake wrappers. The flags I printed out and cut. Now, I know the flags are supposed to be triangle shaped, but because of size issues and the way they printed, I had to cut them as a rectangle. I still think they turned out awesome. Originally, the top of the flagpole was going to be a Lemonhead, but because of my son’s love for marshmallows, a new idea was born. We topped cakepop sticks with mini marshmallows and colored the sides with a yellow food marker. Genius, I tell you.

Mario Kart 8 CookiesOk, back to the 152 cookies. I had so many cookies that I had to be strategic on divvying up the icing into different colors. I made sure that I iced the had-to-do cookies first. That left the yoshi eggs and emblem cookies last.  I put disco dust on the stars to make them sparkle. The mushrooms were easy. The blue mini mushrooms turned out to be my favorite. The fire flower and boomerang flower (Mario Kart 8) took a little more work. I went through my cookie cutters and found some possiblities (like the letter “K” or “V”), but they just didn’t look right. So, I had to make my own cutters. I decided to pipe out the leaves and make transfers. I wanted them to have depth. I made a few extra transfers, just incase they broke or didn’t match up right. The question mark boxes – don’t ask me why I freehanded them when I had my KopyKake machine setup and ready to go. Probably because I didn’t want to stop and print out the question mark. Since I had the KopyKake setup, I used it to make the Mario and Luigi emblem cookies. (Plus, my son thought the machine was cool and wanted to turn it on and off for me.) I was at the end of icing the had-to-do cookies and decided to make different color yoshi eggs, since I had a little bit left of every color.

Question Mark Cheese CubeOne last edible decoration…question mark blocks of cheese. It was a very tedious process. I happen to own a question mark imprint stamp. So, I stamped all four sides and top with a question mark and stuck a toothpick in them. (If you decide to do something like this, I recommend wearing food handler gloves. It made it easier to handle and I got to tell everyone, “Don’t worry, I wore gloves.”) Now, would I do it again? Probably not. Even though it looked cool, not everyone noticed and it took forever to do.

At the party, there definitely wasn’t enough room to put out all the cookies. So, I kept 75% of them in my Snapware containers, but had baggies for everyone to take as many as they wanted home. The cookie and cupcake designs were a hit. My son loved the party, as he should, since he made out like a bandit. When the party was over, I looked at all the cookies leftover. What is a girl to do? I took some to my neighbors and I made my husband take bags of cookies to his co-workers. Happy people everywhere. Enjoy.

Scored A Goal With These Soccer Cookies!

Soccer 20Earlier this year, I made cookies and brought some of the extras to work. I had one in a Ziploc bag, gave one to one of the guys at work and he put it in his pocket for later. Unfortunately, by the time he was able to eat it, it had been crushed into cookie powder. The other day, some of us at work were talking about eating cookies, and the cookie powder guy mentioned that he still had not tried one of my cookies and that his birthday was coming up soon. I quickly said that I would make him some birthday cookies. He lives and breathes soccer, so choosing the theme was easy.

Now, I am not a fan of black icing. So, I asked him if he wanted it to look 3D – which means black icing – or airbrushed? He told me to do which ever one would be easier. I told him I would make whatever he wanted, and he chose the 3D look. Also, he told me that he liked the color blue and he was turning 20. As soon as he said 20, my cookie rolodex started spinning in my mind.

I searched soccer ball clip art to use with my KopyKake projector. I wanted blue in the cookie, so I decided to make a sky and use a #223 tip for green grass. Now, that I had everything figured out. I made the icing and cut out the cookies. Cutting the cookies was probably the most tedious part of the process. They were going to be a cookie 20.  I had to press out a “2” and then use a circle cutter to make the zero. I had to make sure that I pressed all the cuts back together, so the cookie would not fall apart. When I moved the dough to the pan, I used a floured spatula. It helped a lot. Also, I had to angle the top of the “2” outward a bit. That helped the cookie look like a “2” when it finished cooking.

I used my KopyKake projector to pipe the black parts of the soccer ball – which made up the zero part of the 20. I started piping with a #2 tip, but the lines were way too thick so I switched to a #1. I let that dry overnight. The next day, I iced top part of the 2 so it looked like blue sky.  I did this first so that it would be dry enough for the green grass I had planned for the bottom of the 2. Then, I filled in the remaining holes of the soccer ball with white icing. I did not thin out the green royal icing at all. I never had used a grass tip before. It was really easy to use, but I did not clean the tip enough after each cookie. So, some of the grass was melded together more than others. Lesson learned.

The guy at work loved his soccer birthday cookies, and so did all the other employees. I made treat bags for everyone. These cookies turned out great and exactly how I had envisioned them. As an added bonus, my son and I had a lot of fun saying “futbol” during this project. Enjoy.

LEGOS Are Everywhere!

Lego CookiesLegos have infested my house. Luckily, I have not had the honor of stepping on one and having to go to the hospital…yet. My kids love to take the minifigures and swap out heads, hair and bodies. Also, my son loves to play all the Lego games on the Wii. So, it is no surprise that my son wanted a Lego themed birthday party. I asked him if he wanted cookies, cupcakes or a cake. He said that he wanted all of them. I guess I shouldn’t have given him so many options.

Lego TowerI didn’t feel like making a ton of cookies, so I just made one batch of dough. But, when you are cutting out squares and rectangles, the dough goes a long way. I wanted to make Lego heads too. I searched through my cookie cutters, but couldn’t find anything that would work. So, I just made my own. The one thing that I love about icing Lego cookies is that I only have to use one single color. I must say these were super easy.

Lego Female FaceFirst, my plan was to make black icing and pipe features onto the minifigure faces. Then the plan turned into using a paint brush and brushing royal icing on the yellow heads. Finally, after I got out my KopyKake machine and all was said and done.  I wound up using food markers, which worked like a dream. Especially since my daughter wanted a few of the Lego faces to be girls, which means eyelashes and lips.

Lego CakeHe wanted chocolate cake with buttercream icing. I made a single layer round cake and a dozen cupcakes. I iced a crumb coat and then smoothed out the rest. I used brown M&M’s to make the face. It turned out kind of plain, but cute.

So, there you have it. He got all 3 desserts. We ate leftovers for a few days, which no one seemed to mind. After the party, my house has even more Legos. Enjoy.

A Batman Brawl?

Batman Fight WordsBatman Fight Words CloseupI was very excited to make these cookies. I love super heroes and so does the “Sweet 16” girl I made these for.

I was able to use three new things on these cookies. First, I don’t own a spiderweb shape cookie cutter. So, I had to make my own. Second, I decided to do a halftone comic effect on these cookies. Therefore, I was able to use my airbrush machine. It was super easy and super fun. Third, I was able to use my KopyKake projector for the first time. There was no way I could write those words over 50 times and make them look uniform. It was just not going to happen.

I was told her party was a hit and so were the cookies. The whole point of making cookies is making people smile. (Unless they got into a fight with Batman.) Enjoy.