As Christmas approaches, I thought I would use a favorite cookie cutter of mine to create some jolly snowmen for a few friends. Over the last few days I've cut and baked dozens of holiday shapes that I plan on packaging up for individuals right before the 25th, but it's these snowmen that first caught my attention when it came time to decorate.
The snow here in eastern Pennsylvania has been coming down about once a week, and on my drives around town I've noticed several snowmen cropping up on people's lawns here & there. It's always nice to see those jolly creations because it reminds me of the handful of snowmen I created with my brothers and neighbors when we were kids. Does one put a scarf on the fellow along with a top hat? It definitely needs a carrot nose and coal-black eyes, if anything, but what one embellishes the rest of the sculpture with is entirely up to the person creating it. It's the same idea when icing some snowmen cookies.
With every cookie decorating project that I embark on, I approach it much like I do my cooking. I first begin by baking the cookies, mixing & coloring the icing and then getting my cookie 'mise en place' together. Every sanding sugar, every candy decoration and every single tool I'll need gets placed near my decorating station before I begin.
This is what I did over the latter part of the weekend. I hope all of you are baking a lot of cookies!
Here is my cookie decorating station that I've made for myself for this project. Everything is within easy reach and all is laid out in one area. This makes icing cookies so much easier.
Sanding sugars in various holiday colors are decanted and placed into some of my jadeite bowls. I add a small spoon to each bowl so that I can quickly and easily pick up the sugar to sprinkle over a cookie if I need it.
I showed someone a photograph of what I was doing and they asked what the tweezers were for. Well, those handy little tools are used to pick up the smallest of candies so that they can be dropped and placed anywhere on the cookie. This makes one's work more precise. The toothpicks are there to unclog any pastry tips or to swirl a design on a flooded cookie.
For my Christmas cookies, I took out some pearl candies, some green & red medium-sized nonpareils, the tiniest and whitest of nonpareils and some adorable holly leaves with berries. The candies were placed in reproduction jadeite flower pots from Martha by Mail.
I set out to create two sets of snowmen for two different individuals who are dear to me. The row of snowmen on top were given black top hats with a holly leaf embellishment, black eyes, a carrot nose, a fancy scarf and cute green buttons. All of this was done over white royal icing. Half of the cookies were flocked with clear sanding sugar (for an icy effect) and half were not. I love how the green buttons give these snowmen a festive and cheerful glow. I think the recipient is going to enjoy the little army I created.
The fellows on the bottom row were given the same basic treatments of decoration, but because I had a special request from my friend, I placed 'branch arms' on the little guys and made them hold a wrapped present.
Here is a close up of them. Since these adorable frosty snowmen are meant as gifts for my friend's great niece and nephew, they just had to hold a little present. I hope they like them!
I hope everyone is having a wonderful winter
wherever that may be,
and that you are creating glorious cookies
for your loved ones this holiday season.