Blue and White Easter Cookies

I’ve always love the combo of blue and white together.. in clothes, home decor, housewares… most anything.  When I saw the April issue of Martha Stewart Living Magazine using a beautiful blue and white color scheme for Easter cookies I was so inspired!  Blue and white are not the colors that usually come to mind for Easter, but I wanted to play with the idea.  I enjoyed working with the non-traditional colors, and I already have a few different ideas for next year.

My sugar cookie recipe is posted HERE.

My royal icing recipe, as well as lots of decorating help is HERE.

Have a wonderful Easter!

Praise be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!  By His boundless mercy we have been born again to an ever-living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

1 Peter 1:3

Spring Rice Krispies Pops

There is a special place in my heart (or maybe stomach) for Rice Krispies Treats.  They are just so easy and delicious and most every time I make them I think..”why don’t I make these more often?”

This week I wanted to make a batch, but I only had strawberry marshmallows on hand… so I make pink Rice Krispies Treats!  Then, since I love to dress up my desserts… I cut the treats into thin rectangles, pushed them onto 6″ lollipop sticks, dipped in white chocolate and added some spring colored sprinkles.

Voila!  Super cute and super easy spring Rice Krispies pops!

If you’re feeling extra fancy, you can add a bit of ribbon to the stick.  Or wrap them in small cellophane bags to make cute favors, or perfect additions to Easter baskets.

Happy Spring!

Polka-Dot Easter Egg Cookies

Looking for a simple Easter cookie project?  This is it!  With just a few colors of icing and a simple design that requires no waiting between steps, you can make beautiful Easter cookies to share with family and friends. 
I love polka-dots on most anything… clothes, ribbon, party decor and cookies! 
The only “secret” to this technique is that the icing you flood the cookie with and the icing you use to make the dots should be the same thickness (thinned to about the consistency of corn syrup, or shampoo).
Getting Started…
My sugar cookie recipe is posted HERE
My royal icing recipe and lots of decorating tips are posted HERE.
~ Easy Polka-Dot Eggs ~
1.  Outline cookie with a medium/thick royal icing (using a #2 tip).  If you plan to fill the cookie with the same color as the outline, fill immediately.  If you are using a contrasting color on outline (like above), wait just a few minutes before filling.
2.  Fill in (flood) the cookie with desired color (using a #2 or #3 tip).
3.  As soon as the cookie is flooded (and the icing has settled nice and flat), drop a contrasting color of icing in little drops (using a #2 tip) to create the polka-dots.
Allow cookies to dry (8-12 hours), and package as desired.  I found some cute polka-dot take-out style boxes at Party City (shown below).  And sweet mini baskets at Michael’s.  Decorating directions for the chick and sheep cookies (as shown below) HERE.

3-D Easter Bunnies

A few weeks ago, when I made a set of pastel Easter cookies, I wanted to see if I could make the hopping bunny shape (like above) really appear to be “hopping”… by making him (or her) 3-D.

I cut a notch out of the bunny, and also cut an extra cookie shape to act as grass for the bunny to jump over (and to hold him up).  I’m pretty happy with my first 3-D cookie experiment…

~ 3-D Bunny Directions ~

1.  (Before baking) Cut a notch out of the bunny shaped cookie (slightly wider than you think you’ll need, since the dough may spread a bit as baking).  Also, use a knife or rectangle shaped cutter to cut a shape like a strip of grass.

2. Outline and flood both the bunny and the grass and allow to dry completely. (Complete the bunny ear and tail too-as show in THIS post- I just took the photo too early).

3.  Slide the grass cookie into the slot on the bunny cookie and use some thick royal icing to act as glue.  Embellish the grass as desired (adding some flowers could be really cute too).

The links to my Sugar Cookie and Royal Icing recipes are HERE, along with the full set of cute Easter cookies.

‘Hoppy’ Easter!

Lemony Lemon Bread

Lemon is such a perfect flavor to enjoy anytime of year, but it’s sunny color is extra special as we head into spring.  This pretty lemon bread would be perfect for a ladies brunch, or simply to enjoy for a special weekend breakfast.  This recipe makes two loaves and freezes well, so you can enjoy one when you make it, and enjoy the other loaf at a later date.  This bread takes a bit of time to prepare, and requires at least 4 fresh lemons, but it is just as good (maybe better) the next day, so feel free to make it the day before you plan to serve it.

Lemony Lemon Bread

~ For the Lemon Cake ~

1 1/2 cups cake flour

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

2 1/4 cups sugar

8 large eggs, at room temperature

1/4 cup grated lemon zest (from about 4 lemons)

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1/2 cup sour cream, at room temperature

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

~ For the Lemon Syrup ~

1/3 cup fresh lemon juice

1/3 cup sugar

~ For the Lemon Glaze ~

2 cups confectioners’ sugar

4-6 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Making the Lemon Cakes (Recipe yields two 9″x5″ loaves)

Preheat oven to 350*F.  Spray sides and bottom of pans with non-stick cooking spray.  Line bottom of pans with parchment paper and spray the paper as well.

Sift both flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a medium bowl.

Blend the sugar, eggs, lemon zest and lemon juice in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix until combined.  Slowly add the melted butter, while mixing.  Add sour cream and vanilla and mix until just combined.  Use a rubber spatula to fold in the flour mixture, one third at a time, until all the flour is combined.  Do not overmix.

Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans.  Bake in the center of the oven for 20 minutes, rotate the pans, reduce the oven temperature to 325*F and bake another 30-35 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.  Let cool in the pans for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the Lemon Syrup ~

In a small saucepan over medium heat, heat the lemon juice and sugar until the sugar is completely dissolved.  Once dissolved, continue to cook for 3 more minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside.

Line a half sheet pan with parchment paper and invert the baked and (mostly) cooled loaves onto the pan.  Use a toothpick to poke holes in the tops and sides of the loaves.

Brush the tops and sides of the loaves with the lemon syrup.  Let the syrup soak into the cake and brush again.  Let the cakes cool completely, at least 30 minutes.

(The soaked, but unglazed loaves will keep well, wrapped in two layers of plastic wrap and frozen, for up to 6 weeks.)

Make the Lemon Glaze ~

In a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and 4 tablespoons of lemon juice.  The mixture should be thick but pourable.  If the mixture is too stiff, add up to another 2 tablespoons lemon juice (a little at a time) and whisk again.  Pour the glaze over the top of each loaf and let it drip down the sides.  Let the lemon glaze harden, about 15 minutes, before serving.

The glazed loaves will keep for up to 3 days, wrapped well in plastic wrap, at room temperature.

Recipe Source ~ Baked, New Frontiers in Baking

As with most food, the presentation is my favorite part!  I baked one large loaf (9″x5″), but then used the remaining batter to make two smaller loaves in some pretty (paper) baking pans (from Garnish), perfect for sharing with friends and neighbors.  I wrapped a piece of parchment paper around the small loaves (when the glaze had set), and then tied the paper with perfectly matched twine (from The Twinery).  I also used The Twinery’s free printable labels (found here) to label the bread before sharing with friends.

Happy Baking!