Sunday, April 10, 2016

One Smart Cookie {Cookie Pizza}

 I know it's not quite the end of the school year yet, but when I get an idea I need to run with it before I get another urgent idea and pretty soon they're all backed up in my mind and invariably one or two may go by the wayside, or at the very least have to wait until next year!

So anyhow, the idea for a "one smart cookie" pizza popped into my head as a fun treat to celebrate the end of the school year for students and/or teachers.

I've made some "one smart cookie" sugar cookies, and also a "one smart cookie" cake, but I haven't come across a pizza cookie version and knew it would be simple and fun! Woo hoo!
I used the original Nestle's Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe found HERE! You can't go wrong with a classic!
Also make a small batch of any basic buttercream frosting for the facial  decorations. I can't remember which one I used, but it utilized butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk. (You don't need too much.)
I used AmeriColor gel food coloring to tint the frosting, black and soft pink.

1. After the dough is mixed put the entire bowl of dough onto a parchment-lined pizza pan.
2. Using a large, offset spatula, spread the dough evenly around the entire pan to within an inch of the edge of the pan.  
3. Bake according to "pan cookie variation" on the linked recipe page. (While the cookie was still a bit warm, I firmly, but gently applied some additional chocolate chips so they'd be more visible on the surface of the cookie pizza.)
4. Let cookie cool.
5. Using a decorating bag and a #5 tip,  Outline the eyeglasses and add the smile with black tinted frosting.
6. With a #3 tip, add pink tinted buttercream for the cheeks as shown in the photos.
7. With a #3 tip and untinted frosting, add the white eyeballs and the white "tape" on the bridge of the eyeglasses.
8. Add the black pupils to the eyes and then the white dots with the frosting.
All done!

My baked cookie was 14-inches in diameter.

Serve this cookie pizza to your own kids at the end of the school year, or take a couple to their classroom(s) to share.
It would also be a fun teacher gift with a "Thanks for making me one smart cookie" tag attached and placed in a pizza box.


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Monday, April 4, 2016

Fairy Bread Cake Sprinkles Collaboration

       I was really excited when my friend Hani of Haniela's fame, invited me to collaborate with her on a "sprinkles" post. We have collaborated in the past and it's always a fun time! 
As you can see, Haniela's made an outstanding Vans sprinkles shoe cake, and I'm in awe! 
Be sure to watch her video; it was amazing to see all the details she included in making her cake: 
I have been wanting to make a fairy bread cake for quite awhile, and this was the perfect opportunity! 
Have you heard of fairy bread? It's a popular, well-loved treat served at children's birthday parties in Australia. It consists of soft white bread spread with butter, and covered with lots of sprinkles! What's not to love?!? So simple too! 
By the way, sprinkles in Australia are called "hundreds and thousands" which I learned from a very reliable source, my Australian friend Linda, of Bubble and Sweet. :)
The fairy bread is usually cut into triangles, which I did with the fairy bread cookies (above, on ribboned plate), but wanted to keep the cake whole, to appreciate the slice of bread look. :) 
I bought a bread shaped cake mold which worked out very well, but I'm sure it would not be too difficult to sculpt the bread shape from cake.
 Wouldn't this be a fun cake to serve at a birthday party?  I love it! I also think it would be perfect at a fairy themed party, or unicorn, or simply for any sprinkle-lover!

Fairy Bread Cake
(I used the pound cake recipe from the back of the Cakewich cake mold box) It made two "bread slices", though I only used one. I am sure two 8-inch square cake pans should work for this recipe.
Cake Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
6 large egg whites
3/4 cup milk
Frosting (recipe below)
1. Cream butter in mixer until creamy.
2. Gradually add the powdered sugar until combined.
3. Add vanilla and milk until combined, smooth and creamy.
4. Add a drop of  yellow food coloring if you want the frosting to have more of a butter tint for the fairy bread cake (optional).

1. Set rack at the middle level and preheat oven to 315 degrees
2. Grease and flour the cake pan.
3. Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl, mixing well with a whisk.
4. Whisk together the egg whites and milk by hand in a medium mixing bowl until just combined.
5. In a heavy-duty mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add vanilla and beat vigorously.
6. Reduce speed to low and add one-quarter of the flour, then one-third of the milk mixture, mixing until just combined, scraping down the bowl and beater after each addition. Repeat until all ingredients are just combined.
7. Scrape the bowl well with a large rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the (Cakewich) pan(s) and smooth the top.
8. Bake for about 60-70 minutes (may need to modify if using two 8-inch square pans), until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
9. Cool the cake in the pan on a cooling rack for one hour, then remove from pan to finish cooling right side up.

To assemble: 1. I used a serrated bread knife (very appropriate:)) to slice the cake in half horizontally. I used one half for the cake.
2. Spread the frosting liberally on top of the cake to represent butter.
3. Place sprinkles on top of the entire cake. Gently press them onto the frosting. 

Basic Buttercream Frosting:
1 cup salted butter, softened (I used salted to more represent "butter" on bread) 
3 1/2-4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons milk (or more to desired consistency)
1. Cream butter in mixer until creamy.
2. Gradually add the powdered sugar until combined.
3. Add vanilla and milk until combined, smooth and creamy.
4. Add a drop of  yellow food coloring if you want the frosting to have more of a butter tint for the fairy bread cake (optional).


Thanks Hani for the fun collaboration!

Don't forget to check out Hani's  Vans sprinkle shoe video!

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Monday, January 18, 2016

I Have a Dream...

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech on August 28, 1963, on the steps of the Washington, D.C., Lincoln Memorial.
{Today is Martin Luther King Jr, Day}
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