January 2016

Dark, Deep Colors in Icing

Hiya folks (I'm new) - hi! I'm not sure this is quite the right place for this question (I didn't see quite the right sub-category in Technique Trouble-shooting) but here 'tis. Also, it's kind of basic. I am a fan of really dark, deep, lush colors in my royal icing. But to date, I can only achieve this by what I'd call overdyeing the icing: adding too much color, so that when you eat the cookie later it your tongue turns (for instance) blue. Does anybody have tips for how to make dark colors...Read More...
Last Reply By Econlady · First Unread Post

Morphing One Shape into Another

Forum: Tools
Are there any resources or places where we can research or post to share how we could use a particular shape cookie cutter to make other things? Sugarbelle seems to be incredibly creative with this (her baking theme cookies are the perfect example) but I don't have the much visionary inspiration in my feeble brain!Read More...
Last Reply By Jonesy · First Unread Post

Really Dry Cookie Dough

Hey, everyone! I am completely new to cookie decorating and am having issues with my sugar cookie dough. The recipe I am using is 6 cups of flour, 2 cups of butter, 2 eggs, 2 tsp vanilla and I think that is all. But by the time I add the 5th cup of flour it gets all crumbly. Than when I try to roll it out it crumbles a lot.  Should I be adding less flour? I have tried 2 recipes now and it has happened both times. Any advice would be much appreciated. Jessica  Read More...
Last Reply By Cookies From Home · First Unread Post
Yes, it's true! Our software update on Wednesday brought some great new functionality to the site. You can now search for members within a certain distance of a postal code! J ust think of the possibilities! Now it's easier than ever to organize mini-meetups, to find cookiers to take on orders you can't handle, to send out invitations to classes you're conducting . . . the list goes on! What's more, you can now also search members by any field in the member profile. To learn more about...Read More...
Last Reply By Cookies From Home · First Unread Post

Say Hello to February's Header and Background!

Julia M. Usher
Phew, it's hard to believe we're already one month into 2016. But we are - and it's all very exciting, because I have another stupendous banner and backdrop for us to enjoy throughout the month of February. Perhaps you were expecting to see pink and red hearts in a typical Valentine's theme? Well, as you've probably figured out by now, the cookiers here on Cookie Connection are far from typical, and this month's featured artist, Marie Elgaard (aka Lille Kage Hus ) from Randers,...Read More...
Last Reply By Cookies From Home · First Unread Post
This month, we launch a series of live chats with those 2015  Cookiers' Choice Awards finalists we haven't had the pleasure of live-chatting with yet. First up is Angela Nino of The Painted Box , finalist in the Cookie Innovator category for her popularization of watercolor and wafer papering on cookies, and her pioneering use of Periscope for conveying her techniques. (Congrats, Angela!) Angela will answer your every question about cookie painting, working with edible papers,...Read More...
Last Reply By The Painted Box · First Unread Post

No Saturday Spotlight This Weekend!

Julia M. Usher
Hey, gang, as the title says, there will be no Saturday Spotlight this weekend, as I am busy preparing to announce the Cookiers' Choice Awards finalists - if not this weekend, then very shortly thereafter. Our Spotlight s will resume next weekend with the recap of Practice Bakes Perfect Challenge #14, which closes tomorrow BTW. (Hurry up and get those entries in!  )Read More...
Last Reply By CHELY Morales · First Unread Post

Clips Thumbnail Page Backtracking Issue Fixed!

Julia M. Usher
Phew! Hurrah! Yippeeeeeeeeeee!  Yes, it's true. Our site software upgrade on Wednesday  made two key changes to the clips thumbnail page(s) to allow for easier and quicker viewing of clips. First, 90 clips are now loaded to each page (as opposed to 20); this means substantially less hitting of the "Load More" button (which, BTW, has been replaced by a page scrolling function at the bottom of the page). Additionally, if you click on an image to view the details and you want to...Read More...
Hi, all! On Wednesday January 27, 2016, Hoop.la (this site's platform) will be releasing a software update to Cookie Connection . This update will require up to 15 minutes of downtime sometime between 11:00 am and 8:00 pm Eastern. They unfortunately cannot be any more specific with respect to the timing. Since this is routine maintenance, there is no need to alert me about any difficulty accessing the site on Wednesday. All site activity will be back to normal no later than...Read More...
Last Reply By Manu · First Unread Post

New Repurposed Cutter Set

Julia M. Usher
Hi, all! In response to this post (and its very good points) about making creative use of cutters (i.e., using them in ways other than originally intended), I've opened up a new clip set where you can post cookies that do just this. It's called "Repurposed Cutter Cookies". And here's the exact definition of it: (Remember, if you click on any clip set link on the site, you will be taken to a page that looks like the one above with that clip set's definition at the very top. When in doubt...Read More...
Last Reply By Joanie · First Unread Post

Full-Flavor Molasses in Gingerbread

Mily
Well, I am learning to post and to use this computer...I do not really know what I am doing...it springs from place to place...  I hope I am posting in the right place. I found molasses in Mexico. I have made several times the Julia Usher gingerbread cutout recipe and always I used molasses I bought in USA. The flavor was always delicious. This time the cookies had a stark molasses flavor and the molasses I found is full-flavor from USA too, but different brand. How can I lower that...Read More...
Last Reply By Julia M. Usher · First Unread Post

Classes - Online or In-Person?

Cger
Hello Julia,  I am so grateful to have found you and your amazing site.  I am new and have one question.  The classes that are listed,  do we physically need to be in that "country" to attend the class in person?  Or can we attend online?  I don't know where on your site this information is found.  Thanks.      Read More...
Last Reply By Julia M. Usher · First Unread Post

Ovens - What to Consider?

Forum: Tools
Laegwen
I am considering to buy a new oven, as the one I have is just awful. The back right and front left corner get so much hotter than the other parts, that the cookies are burnt on one side and still raw on the other. This also leads to quite a lot of deformation (especially all round cookies not exactly in the middle are ovals afterwards). My new one should absolutely be a convection oven, as I bake more than one sheet at once and will continue doing so - everything else is too much waste of...Read More...
Last Reply By Laegwen · First Unread Post

All New Craftsy Classes - 50% Off!

Julia M. Usher
Hi, again! A further elaboration on my previous post ! Not only is Georganne Bell's new Craftsy cookie class 50% off . . . but this weekend only, Craftsy is doing something they almost never do — all new online classes are up to 50% off ! That's right! Remember that just-released class you've been eyeing from your favorite instructor? It's on sale at prices so rare, you definitely won't want to miss out. These deals will be gone soon, so shop now! Please use our special Cookie Connection...Read More...

"New" Craftsy Cookie Class! 50% Off!

Julia M. Usher
Actually, I'm not sure how new this Craftsy class is, but it's new to me, and it looks great! While some of us were on the subject of creative cutter use earlier today (in this forum topic ), this class by Georganne Bell of LilaLoa came up. In this class , Georganne talks a lot about the creative design process and how to use additive and subtractive techniques to come up with new shapes using your existing stock of cutters. Sounds great, right?! Better yet, it's 50% off, as...Read More...

Linking Bug on Site and Workaround

Julia M. Usher
Hi, I unearthed a small bug on the site, of which to be aware. My site guys are going to fix it, but they can't give me an ETA. (BTW, they still have not given me an ETA on the back arrow/back-tracking issue in the Clips area despite repeated pressure on my part. Not sure what to do other than wait at this point. ) Here's the linking issue, which you may have noticed already. Very long links (meaning those that get displayed by the site with an ellipsis, aka "...") contained in parentheses...Read More...
Last Reply By Econlady · First Unread Post

Meringue Powder vs. Color Flow Comparisons Requested

For my first ingredient purchase, I opted for Wilton Color Flow because it was less expensive, and had fewer odd and difficult to pronounce ingredients than meringue powder (MP). Did a bit of research and learned that MP also has cream of tartar, so when I made my first batch by the MP royal icing (RI) recipe inside the lid, I shorted the 3T Color Flow measurement by 1T and added 1T of cream of tartar.  Everything turned out just fine and I was able to practice flood many MANY cookies...Read More...
Last Reply By donaharrisburg · First Unread Post

3-D Printing in Cookie Dough

Forum: Tools
Julia M. Usher
Here's a cool cookie-making novelty item that will go on sale in Asia in 2016, and perhaps come to the US later - a 3-D printer that extrudes cookie dough, not plastic! It's called the Food Printer, and it's manufactured by XYZ Printing in Taiwan. Read more, or see a larger version of the video,  here . It just proves that there's no limit to where cookie decorating can go! Thanks to Carol Bova at Designer Stencils for sending me the link to this information. Oh, and if you want to see...Read More...
Last Reply By Verónika · First Unread Post
Hi, all, I've recently gotten a few requests asking me to post in-person cookie decorating classes to the site. First, an important reminder: I do not post in-person classes and events for other people , as that would be a full-time job!*   This site is called a "community", because it is designed to grow and prosper through contributions posted by the community, not by any single person or host. That being said, anyone can post a class of his/her own to the site's...Read More...

Greetings from a New Member!!

YummyCutz
Hi everyone! My name is Stephanie and I signed up today. I am loving the winter weather only because it allows me to experiment with baking more! I have my a website where I make my own stencils, but I am very new at baking so I am here to learn. Julia, I LOVE and appreciate your demonstration videos I found on YouTube. It helped me greatly when learning how to use royal icing for the first time. It really made the learning process easy and enjoyable. It will take me a few more tries to...Read More...
Last Reply By YummyCutz · First Unread Post
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