- 7 years ago
Bees, I have just determined that my brilliant DIY dessert idea just isn’t feasible for me. FI and I prefer cookies to cake, so we began to consider having them instead. Then I had an awesome idea! Since our wedding is Scrabble-themed (Onyx edition–black with silver letters) I would make cookies that look like Scrabble tiles. Now, I bake frequently and make some pretty good cookies, if I do say so myself, so this seemed like a pretty good idea. What I had never done before was make/use royal icing or use the flooding technique. But, how hard could it be? I read about it. It seemed simple enough.
This past weekend I decided to do a test run. I’d bought black icing color, icing bags, tips, silver petal dust, and silver cake graffiti. I decided to just make a small batch since it was a test run, and I’m not supposed to be eating dessert these days. So, I Sunday make the cookies, which takes me about two hours even though I’m only make nine (3 x 3 squares)–one broke when I was transferring it from the cookie sheet, so I’m down to eight. Then, I have to let the cookies cool. But I’m tired and don’t want to deal with icing, and FI and I have a date planned anyway.
Monday evening I hurry home from work to make the icing. I was pumped! I get the ingredients together to make a small batch of royal icing and bring out our electric hand mixer. It is out of control! The slow speed is probably extra high on other mixers. Powdered sugar goes flying all over the kitchen; my cat runs away; FI gets home from work, comes to check on me, and immediately turns and exits the room. I am left looking at a gelatinous lump that is not completely mixed and does not seem like it could ever possibly be used to ice anything, much less flood it. Gamely, I add more liquid, and now it starts to mix a bit better. Naturally, I have added too much liquid and now it’s quite runny. I pour some into another bowl and add more powdered sugar to the first to make it thicker for the outlining.
Satisfied with the densities of the icing batches, I proceed to make icing bags. Then, I go to work on the outlines. Three cookies in, the cap pushes off the icing bag and I have to make a new one, but I stick the old one inside the new one to rescue the icing. Somehow, the secondbag rips a bit and starts pushing out squiggly icing designs on the side. I stop it up with my thumb and carry on. When it’s time for the runny icing, I start putting together a third bag, but I cut the hole too pick and the cuff pushes through! On to another bag. This one works. Flooding is more painstaking than you might imagine. After much of the cookie is covered in thick squiggles of runny icing, I spread it further with a toothpick. When the flooding is done, I once again abandon my project for the evening in favor of eating dinner.
Tuesday, I print Scrabble tile outlines on cardstock to make stencils. FI pitches in by cutting out the letters.
Meanwhile, I set about making a dinner which I thought would be pretty straightforward, but which takes me a couple hours (notice a trend?). After dinner I feel a little more energetic, so I take out the silver edible graffiti and try it out.
The results are hugely disappointing. The spray spreads all over the cookie under the stencil. I comfort myself by eating a cookie.
Wednesday evening, no longer full of confidence or hope, I use clear almond flavoring to mix some silver petal dust into a thin paint. I think this might just do the trick!
I put down the stencil and use a thin brush to paint in the letters. The first one turns out beautifully! But, my second letter smudges a bit; by the third there are bits of silver staining other parts of the cookie. Not the perfection I was looking for.
So, lesson learned. It was a good idea, but in the stress of wedding prep I think it would be a huge mistake to try and do this, even with plenty of time to practice. I guess we’re getting a cake!