January 2017

Cottage Food Operations and Meringue Powder

Forum: Legalese
Hi! I am hoping/trying to set up a Cottage Food Operation (CFO) in California for my cookies. I thought I had everything lined up, and have just been told that California doesn't allow meringue powder (or similar) in icing. I have truly cried, it makes me so sad! And I have heard this is not unique to California. It makes absolutely no sense to me that it is allowed in a professional kitchen and not in a home kitchen. Professional kitchen rental is just too expensive for a startup...Read More...
Last Reply By calivibes · First Unread Post

One Big Cookie or a Bunch of Small?

I am going to be selling old fashioned-style cookies (chocolate chip, oatmeal, pb, etc.) at fairs and was wondering if it's better to sell one large cookie or bagged half and full dozen. Anyone have experience with which are more popular? There aren't too many fairs or markets around here and most are very pricey for a table. I guess I can offer both and see how it goes. Thanks!Read More...
Last Reply By Julia M. Usher · First Unread Post

Dark Pitted Look After Icing Dries

When I use red coloring or darker colors, I sometimes get these "pitted" dark spots after it dries. Is my icing too thin ? Or does this happen when you use too much coloring. I try to get all my air bubbles out that I see while the icing is wet. Any advice? Have to make more Falcon cookies for the playoffs and don't want this look again! Attached are some pictures. The pictures don't show it as much, but you can really see them in real life more.Read More...
Last Reply By mulberry_t · First Unread Post

New Craftsy Class with Flour Box Bakery

Julia M. Usher
Hey, all, I just spotted this "new" Craftsy class from Ann Yorks , aka Flour Box Bakery, and thought you production-oriented decorators might be especially interested. ("New" is in quotes only because I'm not sure how truly new it is; it's just new to me.) This course seems to focus less on decorating technique and more on how to set up and manage your work process for maximum efficiency, which is critical for anyone who sells cookies, of course. As always, if you purchase this course via...Read More...
Last Reply By Cookie Lovin Mom · First Unread Post

You'll Love Our February Site Artists!

Julia M. Usher
As Charles M. Schulz once said, " All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt." Of course, the same can be said of cookies too, especially cookies as wondrous as the love-inducing sets gracing our banner and backdrop throughout this Valentine month! I guarantee you'll fall head over heels as soon as you see them! And I do mean "sets", plural! We're super fortunate to have not one, but two site contributions for February, which will be taking turns in the spotlight.Read More...
Last Reply By Kim Damon · First Unread Post

Seeking CookieCon 2017 Correspondents

Julia M. Usher
Hey, everyone. Like last year, I'm seeking one or two people to serve as CookieCon 2017 correspondents - meaning I'm looking for folks who would be interested in reporting on their experiences at CookieCon (while at CookieCon) to those back at home. The reporting could be in the form of photo posts (like these from last year's event ) or blog posts (like those here by last year's correspondents: @BAKRGAL aka Barb Florin, @JenniBakes4U, and @Sugar Cookie Momma, Inc.).Read More...
Last Reply By Avis · First Unread Post
Woo hoo! Congrats to @Teri Pringle Wood for being our first member to surpass 100,000 activity points and to achieve "Cookie Queen" status on our site! As a reminder, activity points are accumulated by participating in the site in various ways - posting photos; contributing blog posts, forum topics, and surveys; commenting on content; having others comment on your content; and so on. And our activity levels, which range from "Nibbler" to "Cookie Queen", are a way to recognize...Read More...
Last Reply By Gingerland · First Unread Post

Advertising My Cookie Shop

Hey, I am looking for advertising ideas for my new cookie shop. I have heard that direct mail marketing is a good method, because it instantly attracts the customers, and is also more personalized. So, I am planning to do direct mail advertising for my cookie shop . I want to know if it would be perfect for my business? I hope it works well. What we are planning to do is mail them regarding all that we have at our store, and occasionally provide offers as well. Whenever there is a new...Read More...
Last Reply By Julia M. Usher · First Unread Post

Ideas for My New Cookie Shop Sign

Hi, people, So, I need your suggestions on something. I am planning to start a cookie shop. I am confused about selecting a sign board for the store. When I checked online, I found that there are a lot of options available. I am planning to get LED board signs from https://www.newstylesigns.com/ . However, will it really look good? I want it to stand out, and people should notice it. I am looking for some good designs for my sign board. How did you all do it ? Looking forward to your...Read More...
Last Reply By Julia M. Usher · First Unread Post
Hi, all! If you're wondering why our site background doesn't match the banner, don't fret. My site tech guru is playing around with some coding of the site to hopefully allow the backgrounds to automatically scale to the size of one's monitor - and to save me time editing and resizing backgrounds to optimize their display on the site. He'll be working on this issue for much of tonight and possibly into tomorrow, so please be patient as we work through these details. Order will hopefully be...Read More...

New "Packaged Cookies" Clip Set

Julia M. Usher
In response to @Cookie Me This ~ Heidi's input during my recent site feedback chat (read the recap here ), I've decided to add a new clip set for posting packaged cookies called just that - "Packaged Cookies". Basically, it is our new place for locating all creative packaging ideas - be they cookies in bags, boxes, or some never-before-seen container. Please also remember to tag any packaged cookies accordingly, i.e., with something like "cookie packaging" or "packaged cookies".Read More...

Ingredients Cost

Hi, I am at the very initial stages of starting my own cookie business. I tried to do it on my own using an oven at home but didn't do very well. So I ventured out to get hold of someone who might be doing it on a commercial scale and could make the biscuits as per my specifications. Eventually I found such a guy who was making biscuits on contract for others. I am a little surprised at the asking price for the biscuits. I am told that the quantity of butter used is twice that of the flour.Read More...
Last Reply By Julia M. Usher · First Unread Post

Hello, Everyone, from Japan

Le Sucre.
Hi, my name is June from Osaka Japan. I went to culinary and Pastry school in France, and I started decorating cookies in August 2016. I would like to learn more about cookie decorating and very happy to find this website. Thank you Julia for this site and your demonstration videos on youtubeRead More...
Last Reply By Lucy (Honeycat Cookies) · First Unread Post

Spotlight to Resume Next Week

Julia M. Usher
Hi, all. My apologies, the Spotlight will resume next week. In light of the week's events here in the US and my prep for the Cookiers' Choice Awards finalist announcement (!!), I need a little break. UPDATE: Actually, our "normal" Top 10 Spotlight s will resume the week after next, as next week's Spotlight is Bakerloo Station's recap of Practice Bakes Perfect Challenge #20!Read More...
Last Reply By Anne Marie Adams · First Unread Post

Heads Up! Please Fill Out Our Vanilla Survey!

Julia M. Usher
Hey, all! In anticipation of Liesbet Schietecatte's next Toolbox Talk , which is all about vanilla flavoring (and primarily that which you use in your cookie dough ), @Liesbet and I would like to ask you about the types and brands of vanilla flavoring that you prefer to use. To that end, I've put together a short survey (only 15 multiple choice questions) that should go very fast! Please fill out the survey here . Thanks in advance for your participation! P.S. Not...Read More...
Last Reply By Teri Pringle Wood · First Unread Post

Bakery Software

Kate Baking
I wanted to take the opportunity to introduce myself and Baking It to you guys. We are passionate about baking and wanted to make business owners lives a lot easier. I won't fill this section with a long explanation of who we are and what we do; if you are intrigued you can find that out for yourself. We have just launched a new software platform: Some of its key features include: Design and Cost Cakes & Bakes with an integrated Quote and Order management platform, and all the things in...Read More...
Last Reply By Julia M. Usher · First Unread Post

Two Live Chats - Coming Soon!

Julia M. Usher
Hi, all! One reminder, and an announcement! First, don't forget: I'll be live-chatting with interested Cookie Connection members on Sunday, January 15 at 10 am CT. The topic is site feedback and goal- and priority-setting for 2017. My chat room is now open to receive advance questions (if you can't make it); otherwise I hope to "see" you there for this very important planning session. Second, that announcement - and it's a good one, folks! Our Rising Star Chat Series , which features...Read More...
Last Reply By Tina at Sugar Wishes · First Unread Post
Hi, all! It's nearly mid-month, and time, once again, to reveal the latest and greatest new stencils in my Prettier Plaques TM stencil line. If you're not familiar with my new line, designed in partnership with Stencil Ease , it launched around Thanksgiving, and you can read all about it here ! This month, I've got four (yes, four!) new five-stencil sets (also sold as separates), including our January Stencil of the Month. What's this about a Stencil of the Month, you ask? Great question! In...Read More...
Last Reply By Anne Marie Adams · First Unread Post

Food-Safe Paint Brushes for Children to Paint Cookies

Hello, I am making some paint-your-own cookies for some preschoolers. It's the first time I have used this technique. I think I remember reading a while ago about some food grade paint brushes to include with the cookies. Each child will get his/her own paint brush and palette. However, other than the sets that come in all different sizes, I can't seem to find any. I read through the posts on here and don't see any mention of using brushes that are food-safe. Is it safe to just use new clean...Read More...
Last Reply By Julia M. Usher · First Unread Post
Hi, all! My JORD wood watch giveaway concluded last night! Thanks to all who so eagerly participated. We had a whopping 4,160 entries! Now, for the info you've all been waiting for - that one lucky winner! The random number generator has spoken, and that winner is . . . entry #1057, Wendy Scoates! Wendy, I've already contacted you via your entry email with information about how to redeem your prize, directly with the good folks at JORD. Please let me know if you have any questions. I know...Read More...
Last Reply By Teresa Pękul · First Unread Post

Site Software Update on Thursday, January 12

Julia M. Usher
Hi, everyone! On Thursday, January 12, 2017, my site guys (Hoop.la) will be releasing a software update to Cookie Connection . This update will necessitate up to 10 minutes of downtime. The update will be released between the hours of 11:00 am and 8:00 pm ET, and the downtime is anticipated sometime during this period, though I cannot tell you exactly when. There is no need to report downtime during this period, as it is completely expected. Thank you.Read More...