Monday, January 23, 2012

Winter for a California Girl

Winter. Oh how I love thee. I love snow, scarves, tall boots, seasonal coffee yummies and reading in front of a crackling fire. I do live in California though, so we just pretend to have winter. Our freezing 60 degree days really chill you to the bone. To be serious, we have no idea what real "seasons" are. So what I'm doing today is living out my love for winter in photos. The way I image a real winter should look and feel like.

Here's a fun recipe I did with my girls this year.
Melted Showmen Sugar Cookies
Part 1: The Cookie Dough

If your a mom like me who's short on time, buy a  box of sugar cookie mix. It works just as well. If you want to make from scratch, here's the recipe.
1-1/2 cups butter, softened
1 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 cups all-purpose flower
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flower, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour {or overnight}.
2. Preheat over to 400 degrees F {200 degrees C}. 
3. Bake cookies6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.
While your dough is chilling in the fridge, start to assemble the ingredients for the next step.
You'll need:
  • Large Marshmallows
  • Royal Icing
  • Icing Colors
  • Silver Dragees, Mini Chocolate Chips, or other little candy pieces you could use for buttons and accessories on your snowman. {You can pipe these details in royal icing OR use accessories. For kids... accessories are easier.}
  • Parchment Paper
  • Shortening
Part 2: The Cookie

After your dough has chilled for at least 4 hours, prepare your work surface. You'll need flower, a couple of cookie sheets lined with parchment paper, a spoon or cookie scoop, and a pre-heated oven.

Using a cookie scoop or tablespoon, scoop a small ice cream scooped size of dough and sprinkle it with flour. This is important if you don't want the dough sticking to your hands.

Roll the dough into a ball and start to press it flat. make it so it has a real wavy kind of funky look to it. The ultimate goal is a puddle. There is no right shape. I like to start it in my hand and then set it on the cookie sheet and press it down until its about half an inch thick.

Go ahead and repeat that step with each cookie. You'll want to get them as close to the same size as possible but they don't all have to be exact.

Bake accordingly to your recipe directions.While they are baking go ahead and make your icing.

Here is the recipe I used:
3 tb Wilton meringue powder
1 lb Sifted powdered sugar
6 tb Water


If using a counter top mixer, beat all ingredients at low speed for 7 to 10 minutes until icing forms peaks. If you are using a hand held mixer, it will take more like 10-12 minutes.

AFTER your get stiff peaks, you'll want to transfer about 1/2 into a bowl and add a 1/2 a teaspoon of water at a time while stirring until the consistency is slightly runny.

To test for the right consistency: Using a knife, scoop a little of your runny icing and hold above the bowl. As it drips, count to 10. By the count of 10, the icing that dripped down should meld into the icing in the bowl so there is no indication of where your drips landed.

Put your icing in a container covered with a wet paper towel and a lid.
Part 3: Icing & Marshmallows

Now that your icing is made and your cookies have cooled, you are ready for the next step. Place a piece of parchment paper on your work surface and pick a couple of cookies to start with.

Spoon a small puddle of icing onto your cookie and using the back of a spoon or knife spread it around making sure to go right to the edge in some spots so he looks drippy.

Next, liberally grease a plate with shortening. And place about 8 marshmallows on the place, spaced out. Set your microwave for 20 seconds and DO NOT WALK AWAY. Watch the marshmallows. As they start to puff up, you are ready to go. Don't let them get huge or melt. You just want them to pull. Stop your microwave BEFORE they double in size.

Liberally grease your fingers and pick up one marshmallow at a time and kind of smoothing it into place (where you want the head). You don't have to be neat or perfect, just get it on there. The marshmallow should not stick to your fingers as long as you have shortening on them.

Repeat this step for each cookie and then let the icing set up just a bit.

Part 4: Decorating

At this point you've got all your base ready to go and you can decorate as you please. Have fun!
Aren't they just adorable?! Inspiration for this project was found on Pinterest and I followed the instruction of Truly Custom Cakery.
Today I'm linking up with The Winter Warm Up and the ladies from:
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  1. Ruby would love those cookies! haha
    And I wish I only had to pretend to know what winter looked like... Eesh. I'm so over it! lol

    1. I have to admit, I like our winter. :) Hope you link up for my Valentine's DIY Craft Party!

  2. Thanks for stopping by and saying hello! I love these cookies, not only are they funny but I could probably eat a dozen by myself!

    1. They are amazingly delicious. Hope you link up for my Valentine's DIY Craft Party!

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