Cookie Con 2014

Mini Cookie Bakery by Flour Box Bakery - via

{Adorable Cookie Bakery above by Flour Box Bakery}

Last month I spent a fun weekend in Salt Lake City for Cookie Con 2014!

Cookie Con is an international cookie decorating convention and show, and this year’s event was the second annual event.  Last Cookie Con was in the fall of 2012 and I had the pleasure of being one of 6 presenters that year.  You can catch up on Cookie Con 2012 (here).  This year, I attended Cookie Con as a vendor and had a booth set up to sell my book, Glorious Layered Desserts.

It’s taken me a while to share a post on Cookie Con 2014 partly because I’ve been overwhelmed as to how to possibly share such a big/fun/special event in one blog post!  I’ve finally concluded that it’s impossible to fully describe what it’s like to spend the weekend with 450 fun, kind, talented people from all over the world who all share a common interest… cookie decorating!  Simply put, it’s an amazing experience!

So this post is merely a teeny tiny snippet of Cookie Con!  If you are a cookie decorator, or have any interest in cookie decorating at all, you can find all the details on this amazing conference on  Cookie Con is the brainchild of Karen and Mike Summer of, two of the most amazing, hardworking, organized, generous people I’ve ever had the pleasure of getting to know!

And here’s a little peek at this year’s conference (from my perspective)…

Cookie Con 2014 -

(top left)  I loved meeting Anne York of Flour Box Bakery!  Anne was one of the instructors this year.   I snuck away from my book signing table for a bit to sit in on one of her classes.

(top right)  I enjoyed traveling with my friend Bethany of Auntie Bea’s Bakery, and we enjoyed a really wonderful dinner with the owners of Ribbon by Design.

(bottom left) I had the pleasure of getting to know Julia Usher at the 2012 conference and I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with her again this year!

(bottom right) The sweet and talented Liz Adams, aka Arty Mcgoo!  Liz and her husband John were the key note speakers at this years conference and it will be near impossible for anyone to ever top their opening night address/entertainment!  Here’s a peek at what they put together for us (my favorite is the Party Rock Anthem).

On the outside, Cookie Con is about the art of cookie decorating… but I think any attendee would agree it’s really about the people!  Meeting new friends, and spending time with old friends is always the highlight of the weekend!

But of course there are LOTS of gorgeous cookies!!

Below are photos of just a small portion of the amazing cookies in this year’s Sugar Show.  There were several different categories, ranging from “Home Sweet Home” (cookies to represent your home), to “Anything Goes”.  Although their are prizes given for the show, to me it’s more of a gallery than a contest.  It’s just so incredible to see what everyone brings to the table!  The variety of techniques and styles creates such an amazing display!!

Cookie Con 2014 Sugar Show Cookies - via

Above – Jeweled Fairy – Teri Lewis, 3-D Floral Shoe – Rocking Horse Sugar Decor, Where the Wild Things are – Sugar Bliss Cookies, Rain Boots – Sassy Divine Cookie Couture,   Beauty and the Beast – Trilogy Edibles, 3-D Dragon – Lucky Penny Cookies

Cookie Con 2014 Sugar Show - via

Above – Mexican Dolls – The Sweet Workshop,  Australian Sunset – Three Sisters Bakery,  Round Mosaic – Yankee Girl Yummies,  Cookie Girl – Penny White, Cookie Con pairs – Onree’s Sweets

The collection of cookies below were created at Cookie Con (versus the Sugar Show cookies, which are brought from home already decorated).  Each of the cookies below was decorated on the same shaped cookie cutter… a mystery shape!  The mystery shape was decorated as part of a contest.  The cookies may be decorated any way you like, and it’s not revealed what the cutter’s original shape/purpose is.  Can you guess the cutter?

Cookie Con 2014 -

Did you figured out the cutter?  It’s a thought bubble!

Isn’t the creativity super inspiring?!

In addition to spending time with “cookie friends” and enjoying the amazing Sugar Show display, Cookie Con is packed with learning!

This year’s class instructors were… Georganne of LilaLoa,  Anne of Flour Box Bakery, Angela of Oh, Sugar! Events,  Amber of SweetAmbs, Myri of Chapix Cookies, and Susan of The Painted Cookie.  Liz Adams – Arty McGoo, and her husband John Adams were the key note speakers.

I only had time to attend a couple classes (between selling books), but I heard wonderful things about each class!

And as if gorgeous cookies and gorgeous friends aren’t enough to fill the weeked… there was a vendor room filled with “sweet” vendors selling an array of cookie cutters, pretty packaging supplies, ingredients and tools!  The complete list of vendors and sponsors from this years event are listed HERE.

Cookie Con is always such an amazing event and certainly should be on your “must attend” list if you have any interest in cookie decorating!  Thanks again to Mike and Karen of Karen’s Cookies for creating such a special conference!

Cookie Con 2014 - via{Cookie Con founders/organizers Karen & Mike Summers (center) along with their amazing staff}

If you were not able to attend this year, I hope these cookies have offered some inspiration and ideas to spark some creativity in your decorating!  And if you’re feeling a little sad that you were not able to attend… stay tuned for a giveaway this week that might be able to perk you up! =)

Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit

So gorgeous!!  Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit - via

Is there anything more beautiful than fresh fruit?  How about fresh fruit with gorgeous lemon cream and a flaky pastry?  Now we’re talking!

These Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit are a beautiful and delicious spring or summer treat!

Wouldn’t these be gorgeous for an Easter brunch, a shower, tea party, or a summer dessert?

And one of the best things about this dessert is that it’s quite easy to make!  With just a few ingredients you can create an impressive treat!

Fresh Fruit Cream Puffs - via

The recipe starts with Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry.   I’ve been having fun working with Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry for the past several months and have truly found that the options with Puff Pastry are endless!

Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit -

Thaw one sheet of Puff Pastry according to the package directions.  Gently unfold onto a lightly floured surface, then use a pizza cutter to cut along the fold lines, then cut each third into four smaller rectangles.

Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit -

Bake 12-14 minutes until puffy and medium golden brown.

Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit -

Fill pastry with lemon cream (recipe below) and fresh fruit.

Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit -

Top with powdered sugar and garnish with additional fruit, as desired.


Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit

This beautiful and delicious dessert is quite simple to prepare and perfect for a spring or summer treat!

Yield: 12 servings


1 sheet Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry

1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
6 Tablespoons powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 Tablespoons Lemon Curd (homemade or store bought)

Fresh fruit of your choice such as, strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, mango


Thaw Puff Pastry sheet according to package directions.
Gently unfold pastry onto a lightly floured surface.
Use a pizza cutter to cut the pastry into 12 small rectangles (As pictured above- first cut along fold lines, then each third should be cut in half, then half again).
Bake pastry on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (or a lightly greased baking sheet).
Bake 12-14 minutes (check after 10 minutes).
Bake until puffy and medium golden brown.
Allow to cool.

While the pastry bakes, prepare fruit by cutting into small pieces, then mixing together in a bowl. Set aside.

Prepare lemon cream by whipping the heavy whipping cream (using and electric mixer) until it begins to thicken.
Add vanilla and powdered sugar, and continue to beat until thick and fluffy.
With the mixer on low, add the lemon curd, one tablespoon at a time. Stop mixing as soon as the lemon curd is incorporated.

Using a serrated knife, cut open each baked pastry (horizontally).
Fill a piping bag (or a ziplock bag with a corner cut off) with the lemon cream and pipe some cream onto both the top and bottom piece of pastry.
Add fruit to the bottom piece (as shown), and then add the top piece, creating a sandwich.
Sprinkle dessert with powdered sugar.
If desired, pipe a small dollop of cream on top and add a few additional pieces of fruit.

Serve immediately, or keep the assembled desserts in the refrigerator up to 2 hours.

Recipe source - Glorious Treats

The elements of this dessert (the pastry, fruit and cream) can be prepared ahead of time (several hours) and then the final assembly can be done shortly before serving.

 Lemon Cream Puffs with Fresh Fruit -

I created this recipe as part of my ongoing work for Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry as a member of their “Puff is Spark” panel.

For the past several months I’ve been sharing recipe using Puff Pastry and asking you to share your recipe ideas too.  Each month I’ve chosen a “top pick” from the recipe suggestions.  Those “top picks” were submitted to Pepperidge Farm and they chose the grand prize winner who will join me next month for a day at the Pepperidge Farm Innovation Center in Connecticut.

The grand prize winner is… Bethany Gist!!   Congratulations Bethany!  I’m looking forward to spending the day with you next month!

Please continue to share your own original Puff Pastry recipes and/or twists on existing dishes via or Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Facebook page, and/or by tagging the brand (#PepperidgeFarm) in any Instagram photos.

Easter Egg Cookie Boxes

Easter Egg Cookie Boxes - Such a beautiful and creative idea!  via

I’ve been dreaming of making these Easter Egg Cookie Boxes since last spring and I just couldn’t let another year pass without bring them to life!

Every once in a great while an idea actually comes together the way I planned… this is one of those rare occasions!

These Easter Egg Cookie Boxes will join the little “family” of cookie boxes I’ve created, starting with these 3-D Pumpkin Cookies, then Christmas Drums and Valentine’s Hearts.

These are not your everyday, “just whipped them up” kind of cookies… these are special occasion cookies that do take a bit of preparation.  But I’m quite sure that presenting one of these pretty cookie boxes to your Easter guests will elicit rave reviews!  I mean they’re cookies, filled with candy… how could anyone resist?  =)

Easter Egg Cookie Boxes - Such a beautiful and creative idea!  via

The options are endless for the design you could add to the top cookie.  I planned for a simple gingham pattern, as I first created for these Gingham Cookies (<– click for full tutorial), but then I wanted to dress them up a bit more.  You can see I left a couple with just the gingham pattern and a simple border, and then for a couple I added some extra dimension with icing on top of the gingham pattern, as well as some small fondant flowers.  I have a full post on creating fondant flowers <–here.

Easter Egg Cookie Boxes - from

To create these Easter Egg Cookie Boxes you’ll need…

*A batch of cookies made with my Chocolate Rolled Cookie Recipe.

*A batch of Royal Icing.

*Two egg shaped cookie cutters, one about 1″ smaller than the other.

*Small candies to fill the “boxes”.  I filled mine with pretty pastel Sixlets from Sweet Works.

Directions -

1.  Prepare dough and cutout cookies with the larger of two egg shaped cookie cutters.  Cut out and bake only large cookies.  If you remove the center “cutout” before baking and bake just “outer rings” the “rings” will bake up larger than the large cookies that they need to be later matched to.

2.  When the cookies are baked, allow to cool a few minutes on the baking sheet, then for half of the cookies, use the smaller cookie cutter to cut out the center of cookies.  The cookies are quite delicate when they are warm.  I would suggest pressing the smaller cutter into the baked cookies, but leave the center cutout intact until the cookies fully cool.  Carefully move the cookies to a cooling rack and allow the cookies to cool fully before removing the center cutout.  If the outer “ring” breaks when removing the cutout, simply press back together and it can still be used.  You can use a bit of royal icing to “glue” it together for use.

I suppose there may be the question “what do you do with the inner cookie cutout?”  Well, in our house with spread a bit of Nutella on them and they “disappeared”  =)

3.  For each “cookie box” you will need two full cookies (large) and two cookie “rings” (large cookies that have had a the centers cut out).

4.  Prepare royal icing.  For the design shown I only made white icing.  Feel free to prepare any colors you like.  If you are concerned about the icing showing between the cookie layers, feel free to prepare some dark brown icing (although I had very little problem with the icing showing).  If desired, you could also use melted chocolate to “glue” the layers together.

5.  Assemble the boxes by piping a thin “ring” of icing onto one of the large, full cookies.  Add one cookie ring, then another line of icing and the second cookie “ring”.  This completes the base of the “box”.

6.  Decorate the box “lid” (one full, large cookie) as desired.  I decorated the tops of the cookies with a gingham pattern, just as I did with these Gingham Cookies.  Hop over to that post for a full tutorial on the gingham pattern.   I used Wilton Color Mist food coloring spray (available from most craft stores), but if you have an airbrush that would work just as well, or better.  You can make a homemade stencil as I first did when I invented this technique, or now you can purchase stencils that are great to use again and again!  This time around I used a stencil from The Cookie Countess (I used the “wide stripe”).

7.  Simply place the decorated lid on top of the “box” and you’re done!  Feel free to add a ribbon around the stack of cookies to hold the lid in place, if desired.  If you’re extra observant you may notice that in a few of the photos (in this post) the candies are piled above the edge of the cookie “box”.   This is just for the photos.  In order to have the lid sit flat on the box, make sure all of the treats inside are below the rim.

Easter Egg Cookie Boxes - Such a beautiful and creative idea!  via

I think these special cookie boxes would make gorgeous place settings for Easter Dinner.  Feel free to add names to the tops, or decorate them in countless different ways!

I’d love to see the results if you give these a try!  Feel free to share your work on the Glorious Treats facebook page.

Happy decorating!

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

Earlier this month I had a local party to celebrate the publishing of my new book, Glorious Layered Desserts.

It was a special night to celebrate with family and friends… many of the people who have been an essential part of my journey the past few years.  If it were not for the encouragement and support of my friends and family, this blog and this book would not exist.  Of course all of the encouragement in the world wouldn’t take me too far if it weren’t for all of the amazing readers of Glorious Treats… that includes YOU!  Thank you!!

Please join me for a little virtual party tour…

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

I planned the party down to every last detail… but that plan would have been nothing but some writing on a few sheets of paper without lots of help from a group of amazing friends!!

Several friends and I spent all day in the kitchen prepping 400 mini desserts.  We prepared five different desserts, each are recipes from the book.

The desserts were…

  • Caramel Brownie Trifle
  • Fresh Fruit Cheesecake Mousse
  • Banana Caramel Cream Dessert
  • Peanut Butter Mousse with Chocolate Cookie Crumble
  • Sugar Nuts

I chose small cups for the desserts so that guests could indulge in several desserts!  I used 5oz cups from Party City, 2 oz mini bowls from Party City,  4 oz cups from Amazon, and polka dot nut cups from The Tomkat Studio.

Glorious Layered Desserts - Dessert Table


Glorious Layered Desserts Party - Mini Desserts


Glorious Layered Desserts Party - Mini Desserts


Glorious Layered Desserts Party - Mini Desserts

The desserts were pretty… but for me, the party was all about the people!  I felt so blessed to have so many friends come celebrate with me!

I truly enjoyed seeing the party guests savor the desserts and flip through the pages of the book, ohhing and ahhing!

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party
Mindy of Creative Juice.

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party
My sweet daughter, Joy… she takes dessert very seriously! =)

Glorious Layered Desserts Party - Appetizers
A few savory appetizers to accompany all the sweets.

Glorious Layered Desserts Party - Appetizers


Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party


Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

Several local bloggers and friends… Heather’s French Press, The Domestic Rebel, Amy’s Healthy Baking, Crazy for Crust (with sweet daughter, Jordan), Very Culinary.

Other local bloggers and “sweets girls” in attendance (but not pictured above)… Domestic Fashionista, Trinnie Loves CookiesCreative Juice,  Auntie Bea’s Bakery (pictured below).

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

 Amazing friends (Bethany, Tara, Lisa, Heather)!

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

Gorgeous friends and party helpers, Amy & Adia.

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

I enlisted the help of three talented friends to play the piano during the party, my sister Joy (pictured above), Lois A., and Kathy M..

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party


Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party


Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

Busy signing books…

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party


Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party


Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party


Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

 Me and my sweet hubby!

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party


Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

I love this photo (above) because it’s me and my sweet family and we’re all smiling.  I was drawing names for giveaway prizes and my oldest daughter (in pink) drew the name of my youngest daughter (in white), we all laughed and I quickly set the name aside.

Glorious Layered Desserts Book Launch Party

As guests left the party they were able to grab a little goodie bag that included sugared nuts (a recipe from the book), some chocolates, and a little pad of “Glorious Treats” sticky notes.


All photos in this post by Gene Chutka (also the book photographer).

HUGE thanks to several friends who helped me pull off this party!  Amy Middleton & girls, Heather Serpa, Bethany Gist, Lisa Lyon, Tara Castillo, Pam Smith, Kathy M., Lois Andrakowicz, Shelly Lange, Joy & Bruce Adams.


Thanks to a few of my favorite companies for providing the following party supplies…

Sweet Estelle’s Baking Supply – Blue Chevron Favor Bags

Sweet Works – Chocolates for goodie bags, giveaways and decoration

Wilton – Piping bags, tips and coupler sets for giveaways

Nielsen-Massey – Extracts for giveaways


If you have yet to purchase a copy of Glorious Layered Desserts, all the details on purchasing a copy are HERE.

Dunkin’ Donuts Bakery Series Coffee {Giveaway Closed}

Dunkin' Donuts Coffee & Cash Giveaway!  - enter on

Few things pair better than coffee and donuts!  Dunkin’ Donuts is an expert with both coffee and donuts… and now they’ve gone one step farther and combined the two!

Dunkin’ Donuts has just introduced their new Bakery Series line of coffee.  Each of the five new coffee flavors is inspired by their popular bakery items… Jelly Donut, Old Fashioned Donut, Chocolate Glazed Donut, Caramel Coffee Cake and Blueberry Muffin.

The folks at Dunkin’ Donuts sent me a box of goodies to try… but of course I wouldn’t tell you that unless there was one for you too!!


Do you like coffee?

Do you like donuts?

Do you like cash?

Wait… what?  Yes, I said cash!

In addition to an awesome package that includes…

  • The complete Bakery Series coffees (1 each): Chocolate Glazed Donut, Jelly Donut, Old Fashioned Donut, Blueberry Muffin and Caramel Coffee Cake flavors.
  • Dunkin’ Donuts coffee mug
  • Turtle Donut blended coffee recipe
  • Mr. Coffee Pot Coffee Maker

This giveaway also includes a $250.00 Visa gift card!!

Dunkin' Donuts Coffee & Cash giveaway!  - enter on


Would you like to win some Coffee & Cash?

To enter…

Simply leave a comment below telling me your favorite kind of donut.  Do you like maple?  Chocolate with sprinkles?  Jelly filled?  Inquiring minds want to know!  =)


Details - Comments must be left on this blog post. Once enter per person.  If you are reading this post as an e-mail, click the title of the post to view the giveaway online.   Giveaway open to U.S. residents only.  Giveaway ends Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014 at 9pm Pacific.  Winner will be chosen using  Giveaway sponsored by Dunkin’ Donuts.  All images text, and opinions are my own.


********************************** Giveaway Closed ***********************************

Winner – Jenny #64