I opened it and my heart flip-flopped. It’s stunning and yummy and I was overwhelmed with emotion (and hunger). I love watching dreams come true. I also love cookies. It’s a complicated bag of emotions.
Ten minutes later, my “old” next door neighbor was at my door with her signature pink box of cookies for our Mercy House volunteers. (And suddenly, we have a peak in volunteer interest). I hugged her tight.
I introduced y’all to Bridget back in February of 2009. It’s an awesome story.
So, about decorating cookies. I have become an expert at eating cookies (and hiding them from my children), but I’ve never once tried to make them. If I had a baking blog, it would be called I AM NOT A BAKER. Subtle, I know.
But when I took this picture, I knew I had to try.
And let me tell you, I don’t know if I’ve ever been more intimated. My family was encouraging, but I think they had pretty low expectations. I mean, seriously, who could blame them. We’ve eaten Bridget’s “mistakes” for years AND WE COULDN’T FIND THE MISTAKES. So, yeah, the pressure, it was heavy.
So, I got the supplies and ingredients and read her very detailed, clear instructions written for people like me (but also written to the gifted bakers out there).
I could’ve just served the dough. SO yummy! I was surprised at how simple and easy the recipe was. I did forget the egg and added it in last (I bet Bridget is dying reading that!) And while I’m confessing, I learned the difference between wax and parchment paper. You can read more insightful commentary at I AM NOT A BAKER.
I loved the part in her book about cookie decorating with kids. Wait until you’ve got everything ready before you call them in. My daughter helped me more, but my younger two were all about licking the beaters once they cut out a few.
We decided to go with pumpkin cookies because most real ones are mismatched, lumpy and unique. Seemed fitting.
While the cookies baked (loved all the helpful how-to’s on keeping cut-out cookie shapes and dipping cutter in flour), I called in the big guns to help me mix up the colored icing. It calls for meringue powder. I’m an adult now.
I just love the way a man looks in the kitchen. Delicious.
Tinting Royal Icing is fun and hard work. But starting a maternity home in a developing nation might be less intimidating then icing the cookies. My hand shook and my writing was wobbly. At one point my husband said, “Let me try” in that tone that said “I will show you how to do this.”
He looked up from his work and said, “I really respect Bridget.”
After outlining the cookies, we flooded them. That’s how the professionals talk.
And then this happened:
I can never refer to myself as a professional again.
We ended up with a lumpy, bumpy pumpkin patch.
It was a super fun experience and the best thing about it?
Once they dried, we ate them. The respect level in this house went way up. My kids fought over the last one! (Well, I hid the last one, but you probably already knew that!)
Not so bad for a first try, eh?