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Hi everyone! I am just home from Girl's Camp! I am still feeling exhausted after 3 days home, thus the lateness of today's post!
This year at camp, I was asked to make the girls special cookies as a handout to go with the speakers who were there to talk about the temples of our church. They needed to be beautiful and delicious and there needed to be about 125 of them!
The problem is that I am not a terrific cookie designer. I can decorate with the kids and have some fun, but this was a different story. In the end though, the cookies came out really beautiful, there were lots of compliments and my stress over the entire project was relieved! Here are some of the tips I learned as I worked on this project, plus another idea that I came up with for the 4th of July.
Because we had special diets involved, I made all of the icing the same, without milk or butter and without meringue powder. That way I didn't mix anyone's diet's up. Also, I always baked and decorated the gluten free cookies first so that there would be no residue of wheat, etc where I was working. We didn't have anyone actually diagnosed with celiac disease, but there were people who knew that they felt better if they ate a certain way, (gluten free or lactose free or vegan) so I didn't have to worry too much about killing anyone but I did want to accommodate their diets.
You would think that after all of those cookies, I would be finished with baking cookies for awhile. Especially since it is summer! But with the 4th of July coming, I decided to make a few more. Nothing too fancy this time, but I have some extra white chocolate lying around so I decided to try to make a little something to dress these cookies up.
No matter how quickly you have to decorated the cookies, a little extra touch can elevate them, as well as putting them on a special tray or platter!
Do you have any secret tips that make us non-professionals make our cookies look better? Drop a hint or 2 in the comments!
This post reminds me of some others you may enjoy:
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Slightly less than 40 years ago, when I was just a newlywed and my husband was in the army, we were living in Montery, CA because my husband was learning Russian at the Presidio there. One day we were in the grocery store and he saw one of his classmates, Dennis and he introduced me to him. Dennis' wife was in a different aisle at the moment, but then she came around and saw us and asked me if I knew where the "Fluffa Nutta" was. Her name was Kelly, and she and her husband are from Massachusetts. They had very strong accents that I had no experience with and I couldn't understand a word she said! Eventually I learned that she was looking for a product called Marshmallow Fluff that is very common on the East coast but pretty much unheard of in the West. In the West, we have marshmallow cream, which is less fluffy and more runny than Fluff. They use Fluff for many things in the East, one of those things is the "Fluffernutter," (pronounced "fluffa nutta") a sandwich made with peanut butter and Marshmallow Fluff. If you are able to shop in a military commissary, you may be able to find it. Dennis and Kelly, who have remained dear friends of ours over the past 40 years since that day, have been so kind to send me Fluff from to time.
Now, fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when I was shopping at an Asian Supermarket which actually carries foods from many countries. I found some big cookies from Germany, which I purchased for nostalgic reasons. They looked like those marshmallow cookies covered with chocolate that you can buy anywhere, only much taller. Then, when I bit into one, I realized it wasn't a firm marshmallow inside the cookie, but some really light marshmallow fluff! Well, that reminded me of Kelly and the way she introduced me to "Fluffernutter " sandwiches and I thought, I could make cookies like these except add peanut butter and call them Fluffernutter Bites! And that, dear readers, is how these bites were born! Thanks Kelly!
Unfortunately, I didn't have any Fluff when I made these. I had to use marshmallow cream. But, I know that if you use Fluff, they will be even better. Click on the pictures to see what I did. Once again I used my Hot Cocoa Bomb molds. You can find the molds here.
Ingredients and Supplies:
Fluffernutter Bites Tips:
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I have posted in past articles about making and using sprouted wheat flour. While this process seemed overwhelming to me at first, I am a total convert to sprouting wheat and making flour and I am always on the look-out for ways to incorporate it into my baking. (Also here, here, and here!) You can click on the previous links if you want to know more about the process and see some great recipes.
One thing that everyone who grinds their own flour knows is that you should grind enough to use right away and just grind it as you need it in order to keep the nutritional value in the final product. So, recently, I found myself with some excess sprouted wheat flour that I needed to use up. I had yet to make cookies with sprouted wheat flour, so I decided that the day had come to see how the flour worked in some of my husbands favorite oatmeal cookies. I was out of raisins, but I did have Craisins, so that is how these cookies were born.
The test was a success and these cookies were crispy with just the right amount of chewiness.
It never ceases to amaze me how much lighter the sprouted wheat flour is compared to regular whole wheat flour and how the warm, nutty flavor does not overwhelm like it can in regular whole wheat baked goods. As a matter of fact, I couldn't really tell that these were made from whole wheat rather than regular all purpose flour, although if they were side by side, I believe that these would have the richer flavor.
And yum! I love Craisins in an oatmeal cookie!
Have any of you tried the sprouting wheat for flour method? How have your results been and tell me what you have used this flour for. I would love to hear and try new things.
Do you eat ham for Easter Dinner? Snake River Farms is a great source.
Creators of Hot Cocoa Bombs! (copyrighted)
Helen Reynolds: Mother of six children , grandmother to ten and counting! I love to cook, craft and create things and I especially love doing that with my family, So, when my lawyer daughter, Lindsey, and my artist daughter, Madalynn, and I came up with the idea of Hot Cocoa Bombs, this blog was born. Then, one more daughter, with her technical and science skills, plus creativity has joined in to round us out! Read more about us here!
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