Welcome to the Power of a Cookie where you'll learn how cookies bring people together and help make the world a better place.
Summer's Cookie Academy on The Power of a Cookie
Summer's Sweet Shoppe Cookie Academy Podcast
Thank you so much Summer for being our guest on the podcast today. Click here if you're looking for Summer's Top Tips for Baking Cookies with Kids at Any Age. No need to look any farther because you can find Summer at the links below.
Summer’s Sweet Shoppe
Summer's Sweet Shoppe
The Cookie Academy
Now let's learn all we can about decorating cookies so we can go out there and change the world one cookie at a time!
Josh Wortham This Guy Can Do Anything
Episode #29 Josh Wortham This Guy Can Do Anything!
Thank you so much Josh for being on the podcast and sharing your story with us. You're an incredibly talented young man with a love to help others and I can't wait to see how you use your amazing gifts to make this world a better place!
Don't miss a thing because you can follow Josh on his amazing journey. Follow him now on Facebook at Peaceful Pastries and Sweets.
#27 How Do I Keep My Sugar Cookies from Spreading?
Episode #27 How Do I Keep My Sugar Cookies from Spreading?
Supplies That Help Keep My Sugar Cookies from Spreading:
(contains affiliate links)
Food Scale- I don't see the exact food scale I have. I bought it a few years back and I'm sure the design has changed, but I did find one at Walmart and one on Amazon that looks a lot like mine. They'd work great for weighing your baking supplies. The one at Walmart is under $20 and the one on Amazon is under $30. Like I said in the podcast, I don't want you to use these links to buy them unless you want to. I wanted to use the links so you'll have an idea of what I use. My suggestion is to find a food scale that's affordable, measures in grams, kilograms, ounces, and pounds and looks like it would be easy to clean because we all know how flour and powder sugar can make your kitchen surfaces look as if it snowed indoors.
Food Scale at Walmart- This looks almost identical to the food scale I use except the top piece of glass on this one is round and mine is square. Food Scale at Amazon
Flexible Cutting Mats
Do you have questions about sugar cookies spreading? Let me see if I can help a little.
There's nothing worse than making cookie dough, cutting out your cute little shapes, placing them on a cookie sheet and sticking them in the oven only to remove a baking sheet full of cookies that have spread so much you can’t tell what shapes you baked in the first place. It’s like your heart kind of sinks and melts like those cookies did while they were in the oven.
I have a few tips that might help you prevent that from happening. Here are some questions I get asked a lot.
How do I keep my sugar cookies from spreading when they bake?
Good question! There are several things that can cause your cookies to spread and we’ll cover as many as we can today.
When I first started baking I had an issue with baking powder. It made my cookies spread to almost twice the size of the cutter that was used. Remember when I said I’m a heavy-handed scooper of flour? I guess I have an issue with teaspoons as well. I decided to cut the amount in my recipe in half and it worked. Sometimes I don’t use baking powder at all and that works as well. If you need a recipe you might want to try my Sugar Cookie Recipe. It only calls for 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder because I already cut the amount in half for you. See if that helps keep you cookies stay closer to the size of the cookie cutter you used to cut them out.
Don’t over mix your cookie dough when you make it. Cream the butter and sugar for a couple of minutes and then add the rest of the ingredients. Over mixing the dough will add air into it and cause the dough to collapse and get air bubbles when it bakes. Just mix the dough as long as you need to get the ingredients mixed.
The amount of flour you add to your cookie dough when you’re making it will determine how your cookies turn out. It's easy to add too much flour if you’re a heavy-handed scooper like me. A great way to handle this is by using a food scale because it will help you use the correct amount of flour and sugar. We’ll talk more about this later because this is one tool I truly need as a baker. I measure my flour, sugar, and powdered sugar and it really helps me get the results I’m looking for!
If you sprinkle a lot of flour on the surface where you roll out your cookie dough, the dough will pick up that flour and it can cause your cookies to become dry and crumbly. That’s why I love using the Flexible Plastic Cutting Board Mats because they don’t require a lot of flour.
Is your oven temperature correct?
#26 Bake at 350 with Bridget Edwards
Are you ready for a great podcast? I hope so because we're going to Bake at 350 today with Bridget Edwards!
I'm so excited to share this podcast with you guys. Bridget Edwards is one of the sweetest people I've ever met. As you're listening to the podcast you'll hear about the first time I saw her in person. She was sweet, graceful, elegant and extremely beautiful. I was scared to death to meet her, but when I did, she was kind and friendly. It's something I'll never forget.
A few years ago Karen Summers asked me to be an instructor at Cookie Con. I asked a few blogger and cookie decorators for a photo of the first cookies they made and a photo of a cookie they'd recently made. This "Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries" was the recent photo that Bridget shared with me. It's one of my favorite cookies ever. The yellow and red look amazing and the cherries she's piped look perfect. They look real. It looks like you could reach into the photo, pick up a cookie, and eat it! These are an awesome set of cookies and I'm very grateful she shared the photos with everyone at Cookie Con.
If you want to see the photo of the first cookies she made, you can see them on YouTube in the 'Bearfoot Basics Sugar Cookies 101 Part 3' video. It's a long video so if you want to skip to the part that shows Bridget's cookies, move the video slider to 35:39 minutes to see them. It's hard to believe they're her first because of the pretty writing on them.
When looking on the internet I see decorators using several things that Bridget taught us. The one I use most often is her coffee filter tip, If you haven't seen it you can find it here at her Coffee Filter tutorial she made back in 2008. It's a priceless decorating tip!
If you search her blog at Bake at 350, you'll find lots of great tips and tricks that will help you decorate cookies. Bridget also shares wonderful recipes and Trader Joe's tips. I think you need to head on over and search her site and look at her social media links below. You'll see amazing cookies, delicious recipes, and tips you'll use every time you decorate cookies. Did I mention she's amazing? Well, she is!
Bake at 350 with Bridget Edwards
Bake at 350
Want to see Bake at 350 on The Pioneer Woman Site? You're in luck!
Bake at 350's posts for The Pioneer Woman Food & Friends
I have never been to Trader Joe's, but reading Bridget's reviews makes me feel like I'm a weekly shopper. You should check out her reviews because I know you'll love them.
Trader Joe's reviews
Do you have Bridget's books? If you want to check them out, click here Books Decorating Cookies Party and Decorating Cookies.
I know you all know where to find Bridget already, but I wanted to give you the links so you can get there fast! So what are you waiting for? Click those links and give her some love today! I know she'll love seeing you!
Episode #25 Sweet Dani B Life is Sweet with Dani Fiori
Episode #25 Sweet Dani B Life is Sweet with Dani Fiori
(Photo Courtesy of The Martha Stewart Show)
What a happy photo with Dani, Martha and the adorable decorated sugar cookies. I love the candy and sprinkles Dani uses to make them. The display with the jars is a very smart way to display holiday cookies, The only problem I have with this display is that everyone will eat the cookies before the holiday arrives. I think I'll take the snowman and gingerbread man with the tree or Santa and the reindeer. I have an idea, let's all share all the cookies!
(Photo Courtesy of Martha Stewart Living)
Here it is! The Martha Stewart Holiday Cutters is a fun set of cookie cutters. I love how Dani decorated them. Look at that cute little Santa cookie with his friends the deer, snowman, and partridge in a pear tree. This set of cookies is adorable! I love the way Dani decorated them. When you look at each cookie you can tell they're decorated by Sweet Dani B. The way she adds sprinkles and candy to each cookie is her signature design.
It's hard to find these cookie cutters but if you want the Santa, Dani has decorated one that's similar. You can find Santa with Bag Cookie Cutter at Copper Gifts. She also has a Mrs. Clause Cookie Cutter. She has a lot of cookie cutters she's designed at CopperGifts.com. I purchased her Yeti cutter back in September and I'm looking forward to decorating him soon.
There he is! That little Santa Cookie-The One That Started it All for me. I remember watching The Martha Stewart Show and seeing Dani decorate those cute little Santa Cookies with those magic little decorating bottles. I had never seen the decorating bottles and I was amazed. As I watched how Dani added each color of royal icing to the cookie and then added sprinkles I was hooked! Dani and Santa touched my heart and changed my career. Thank you, Dani, for showing me how to decorate cookies and start my own cookie journey. Making cookies is a great way to share happiness and cookie love.
Dani Fiori started Sweet Dani B Cookie Kitchen and Petite Party Studio about 2 years ago. I've enjoyed watching her in her shop online and how she teaches adult and kid workshops to show others how to decorate. Dani knows how to share the cookie love to everyone. Looking at the photos you can see the love Dani puts into her cookies and her shop. She's made it feel warm and welcoming and a place I'd want to visit every day. The only thing stopping me is the shop is in New York and I'm in East Tennessee. Maybe one day I'll get to visit, decorate, and share a chocolate chip cookie with her.
Oh yeah, did I mention Dani is an Emmy Winner? This girl has serious skills!
Here is Dani with her husband Keith at the ribbon cutting ceremony at Sweet Dani B Cookie Kitchen and Petite Party Studio. In the podcast, Dani mentioned that Keith painted and made things for the shop. He painted "Life is Sweet" on the cafe wall and it's beautiful. What a sweet couple!
Dani talked about working as a waitress and at Ralph Lauren during the podcast. That must have been super exciting. I'm glad her career changed and brought her into the cookie world. Her cookies are cute and well designed and full of love. She gave me the tips on how to start decorating which led to The Bearfoot Baker Blog, 100 Animal Cookies Book, The Power of a Cookie, and The Cookie Network. Seeing her on The Martha Stewart Show changed my life and I'm very grateful.
Share the Cookie Love with Sweet Dani B.
Here are a few places you can find her and her adorable cookies:
Facebook: Sweet Dani B Cookie Kitchen & Petite Party Studio
Sweet Dani B Cookie Expert Bottle Kit and Tools
Sweet Dani B Cookie Gallery
#24 The Cookie Architect with Rebecca Weld
Have you seen The Cookie Architect Rebecca Weld's cookies? She's an amazing cookie decorator. I love looking at the different designs she creates. The colors she chooses are perfect for each set of cookies. They're truly works of art. She's creative, artistic, and intelligent and it shows in each cookies she decorates.
When you wonder where the name Cookie Architect comes from well, it's simple. She's an architect with her own firm. Think about it, she designs building and that talent over flows on her cookies. They're beautiful and one of a kind. I get lost in the fabulous designs and colors.
Rebecca is also a mother to two boys and makes cookies to give to friends and family. Even though she's running her own architect firm and makes cookies for friends and family, sometimes she finds herself making cookies to help raise money for charity. She talks about that in the podcast so you don't want to miss it.
I'll be honest, her puzzle cookies make my heart happy. When you look at all those puzzle pieces it's incredible how the beautiful pieces fit together. After you look at it you don't want to eat it because it's a work of art. All of her cookies look like art pieces.
Episode #24 The Cookie Architect with Rebecca Weld:
I know you'll want to follow The Cookie Architect with Rebecca Weld and see her beautiful creations so I've listed a few links below so you can follow her cookie art. I know you're going to love the every cookie she makes with the gorgeous designs and colors.
The Cookie Architect
Facebook: The Cookie Architect
Remember in the podcast when we talked about the first cookies The Cookie Architect made? Here is a picture of her snowflake cookies. I don't know about you but I'm having a hard time believing these are the first cookies she ever made. WOW! They're so pretty.
Thanks for listening to The Power of a Cookie. I'm so happy Rebecca was a guest and told us about her cookies. I hope you'll join me and spend some time looking at her cookie photos and get lost in her designs. I know most of you all ready follow her, but if you don't you should totally check out her website. When you see her cookies you'll know they're works of art!