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Baking Christmas Cookies!!!

Tis the season to be jolly, Fa lalalalalalalaalaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa~!!!!

2 more weeks till Christmas! Are you guys excited??

I know I am, but I still haven’t decided what I’m going to do on the day itself, wtf. I might just stay home and host a mini house party and cook up a storm because I’m homely like that!!

I wanted to go on a vacation but air fares are RIDICULOUS.

So anyway, the best idea struck us yesterday… baking CHRISTMAS COOKIES!!!

First it started out as an idea to bake gingerbread men, then I thought, “Why stop at gingerbread?? Go ALL OUT to make them as cute and christmassy as possible!”

To our delight, they turned out absolutely AMAZING! And I even took pictures to show you guys how to make them, because its the season of joy and sharing, yay!


Things you’ll need:

For the shortbread cookies-

2 cups butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 cups all-purpose flour (NOT self-raising flour!)

For the royal icing-

4 egg whites (seprarate the egg whites from yolk and use the whites only)
4 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
1 teaspoon lemon extract (We didn’t have lemon extract so we added lime juice instead)
food colouring


First, preheat your oven to 180 degrees, then while it’s heating up, let’s get the yummy icing ready!

Sam got me this electric mixer for my birthday… such a lifesaver! I can’t imagine that I used to bake without a mixer omg.

Beat the 4 egg whites in mixer on high speed until foamy, gradually adding sugar and lemon extract..

Beat for at least 5 mins, or until your icing is really nice and thick!

I’m so happy to say I’ve found THE PERFECT COOKIE ICING RECIPE, and this is it! This recipe is everything I’d want in icing.

Not overpoweringly sweet, a thick consistency so it’s easy to pipe on, and after a few hours it dries completely to a wonderful glossy coating!!! Using egg whites for icing instead of butter is genius.

This is royal icing that I find is best suited for already sweet sugar cookies, not the usual buttercream icing on cupcakes, so don’t use them on cuppies!

Seperate your icing into little bowls and add different coloured food coloring into them!

I mix them with chopsticks because I dip the ends of chopsticks into my Wiltons Gel Food Colouring and start stirring the colour into my icing mixture.

Since it’s a christmassy theme, the main colours we’ll need is White, Red, Yellow, Green and some Black if you wanna draw on black outlines for santa’s face etc.

(this is optional, we ran outta black so we didn’t use that)

Now for the cookies mixture!!!!

Mix 2 cups of softened butter with 1 cup of sugar until it’s fluffy, then add 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract and finally 4 cups of flour, and mix well.

If you’re doing it by hand, it’s gonna take a lot of effort.. and if you’re doing it by mixer, be warned, it gets messy!! I ended up getting batter splattered all over myself hahaha yummmyyyyy.

When you’re done mixing it thoroughly, you should get a soft and moist dough that looks something like this!

Get your cookie cutters ready for all sorts of fun Christmassy shapes!!!

Take a ball of dough into your hand, compress them in your palms and use a rolling pin (or your hand) to press them flat, then use cookie cutters to press out fun shapes!

If you don’t have suitable cookie cutters, don’t worry, you can always draw the shapes you want on a piece of paper, cut out the shape and use it as a stencil as you use a knife to “trace” the outlines.

Or you could be a ninja and do it freehand like us, we took a knife and started cutting and moulding our own custom shapes like Christmas trees, Santa hats and Christmas stockings!!!!

It will take a few tries to get the hang of it but it’s so much fun and you get to experiment with different shapes!

This is probably the most fun part about baking because you get to be super creative :)

The amazing thing about this dough is that it’s so easy to mould, unlike gingerbread cookies!

Shortbread is kinda fluffy yet kinda crispy and crumbly at the same time… wonderfully buttery, it’s the ultimate cookie to rule them all!

Ta-dah!!!

First batch ready to go into the oven… ^________^!!!

We ran out of grease paper (omg yes my house is very low on supplies) and so we greased the pan like crazy, hoping our cookies wouldn’t stick to the pan while baking and thus crumbling when we try to remove them afterwards, and guess what…


THEY DIDN’T!!!
They came off so easily. I really love this cookie recipe, it’s idiot and low-supply proof!

Bake at 180 degrees for about 15 minutes or until it turns golden brown… (Not BROWN ok, golden brown lol brown means chao tah already)

If you cook it a little lesser, it’d be more moist and soft, if you cook it a little more, it’d be super crispy!

Hahahaha look at this Santa that Sam made!!! So cute! ♥

The cookies are EXTRA yummy when they’re fresh out of the oven, so I suggest eating some while they’re still warm, they kinda melt in your mouth :’)

Once the cookies have cooled significantly, start decorating them with your icing!

Because the icing is of such a great thick yet creamy consistency, you can use a spoon / spatula / knife to spread it on and use a piping bag with a small tip to pipe on the smaller details!

Remember to leave the icing to dry for a few hours, icing is easily damaged when it’s wet.

Oh hello gingerbread man without eyes!!!

Look at all that glorious royal icing dripping down his sides…. Mmmmmmmm

O hai Christmas tree!!!

SEE what I said about “when the icing dries, it forms a glossy sheen”?

Check out my already-dry stocking – it’s so shiny and perfect!!!! *super happy*

And now……..

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My finished product!!!!!!!!!!!

SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!


So cute!! Almost too cute to eat :3


I LOVE THEM SO MUCH! ♥ ♥ ♥

We have the northen star, a jolly santa, frosty the snowman, a christmas stocking, a fluffy christmas hat, a christmas tree with ornaments, holly leaves, giant heart, a gingerbread man, a flower…

And there’s even more in the 2nd batch!!!

Real proud of me and Sam, it turned out even better than I’d imagined. I can’t decide if they’re more cute than yummy or if they’re yummier than cute.

They look perfect just sitting on the dining table, I almost can’t bear to eat them!

If you don’t know what gift to get someone for Christmas, make them Christmas Cookies!

I think this would be a WONDERFUL Christmas present to give to anyone, who wouldn’t like colorful cookies? Especially if they’re X’mas themed!

Home made cookies add that extra necessary jolly touch to any decent house party. *nods*

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So very pleased with my cookies indeed.

I hope you guys liked this how-to post, they’re extremely easy and fun to make, so make them with family and friends to get into the ULTIMATE Christmas mood!

Extra bonus fun points if you play christmas carols in the background and chase each other with batter on your fingers and laugh when flour gets onto someone’s nose, hehe :)

HAVE FUN!!

And of course, if it’s not too early to say this…


MERRY EARLY CHRISTMAS, EVERYONE!

xoxo,
Jess

Rainbow Frenzy!!!

So recently, I’ve been obsessed with the idea of baking pretty, pretty cakes.

I don’t know where my new craze and interest sparked from, but it’s really fun and everybody loves a good, yummy cake so heck, I proclaim baking to be my new-found official hobby!

My first task?

BAKE A SUCCESSFUL GOD DAMN CAKE TO START OFF WITH.

See, the previous cakes I’ve baked so far have been quite FAIL, if I do say so myself… They either look weird, or taste weird.

So my first “proper” cake had better be something unique and really awesome – I decided on baking a RAINBOW cake. (I obviously adore bright colours)

Not just ANY rainbow cake… I was determined to make a rainbow cake that will make people go “ZOMG” and hopefully persuade them that I am a bloody awesome baker even though I actually almost have no idea what I’m doing.

And because I’ve been getting so many requests doubled with the fact that I am an angel,

Today I WILL SHARE WITH YOU HOW I DID MY RAINBOW CAKE!!!!


Mission Cake Rainbow : WIN!!!

To bake a rainbow cake like mine, you will need..

A helpful boyfriend to start off with. LOL. It’s quite a lot of trouble for one person to handle, especially if you don’t have all the appropriate tools!

If you don’t have a trusty bf, get your maid / friend or prepare to spend a couple of hours on this.

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As for the ingredients, you will need:


Your own recipe for the cake mix.

Take any off google or buy a baking cook book. I used a pre-made cake mix from the supermarket, because I find that using pre-made cake mixes as a base always turns out the best for me.

Somehow, their cake mix ensures that the cake has the perfect light and fluffy texture that I want. Plus it’s so convenient, I just add milk and eggs and mix away!

Mine is a regular vanilla-based sponge cake.

Make sure the cake mix is not dark or heavily coloured because it will affect the colours of the rainbow!

Usually I just add flavouring and extra bits that I want to the pre-made cake mix to give it a little bit of my own touch, such as adding Vanilla Extract or Chocolate Chip bits.

After mixing your eggs + flour + butter + sugar + whatever else in… It’s time to paint the colours of the rainbow!

You’ll need a variety of vibrant, tasteless high quality food colouring.

Don’t be cheap – a little goes a long way when it comes to food colouring. Make sure its tasteless or your cake will end up tasting funny, and buy high quality colouring coz you don’t want shitty colours!

I got my utensils and ingredients from Redman, it’s a baking shop where you can find almost everything you will need to bake this cake in their shop!

Get fondant, colouring, utensils, decorating tips, flour sugar etc all from there :)

Separate your batter mixture into 6 equal bowls, then add the food colouring into each individual bowl as seen above!

You want to be very careful with food colouring. The one that I’m using is extremely concentrated, and won’t come off clothes if I stain myself, so sometimes just a few drops is sufficient. (I used the ends of chopsticks to dip into the food colouring)

You don’t want to underdo it cuz the colours look the best when most vibrant, yet at the same time you don’t want to overdo it cuz it might taste off and look too saturated.

Add a few drops of colouring each time, and mix well, then observe the colour.

Most of the time, the batter mixture appears quite light but when well-baked, it turns to a much darker colour… You can compare my coloured batter to the actual cake later on.

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Once you’ve completed all 6 colourful bowls of the rainbow, it’s time to start baking!!!!

** The trick here is to bake your different coloured layers ONE by ONE.

Start off with the bottom most layer, which is purple, then slowly work your way up to the other layers. If you have multiple pans, good for you.. saves time and effort.

Spread the batter evenly into your baking pan (didn’t take pics of these coz was too pre-occupied) and set oven heat to about 180 degrees and bake for 25 minutes for each layer!

If you DON’T bake the layers separately, instead of a nice and even rainbow, you will get…


This.

A mushy, tie-dye effect kind of rainbow cake.

We thought that carefully placing each layer of coloured batter on top of each other in the pan would keep the colours and shape together, but how wrong we were…

My family doesn’t think it looks all that great but it’s all about personal preference cuz me and Sam thinks it’s just fine like this.

Of course it’s not as nice as the properly-layered rainbow, but it’s pretty damn unique like this already and it looks really fun all the same!

It is also a lot less time consuming and more convenient.

You’d take about 45 minutes to bake this tie-dye rainbow cake, but with the other one you’d need a grand total of 150 minutes for the 6 different layers to bake individually!

However, if time and effort is not an issue and if you’re really out to wow people and impress,

I suggest you read on and follow the rest of my instructions for a WIN rainbow cake :)

While your 6 layers of cake bake individually for 150 minutes, you have plenty of time… so start thinking of how you’d like to decorate the top of the cake!

We used white fondant (it’s like edible play-doh) to create different cake-topper decorations,

and I simply L♥VE fondant!!!

You can do so many things with it…

Roll it out to cover your entire cake for a smooth, professional finish, or come up with your own lovely little creations if you are artistic enough like my boyfriend!

Check out the rose that Sam handmade with white fondant!!!!

Is he bloody talented or what?!? Mad skills. I kept them instead of eating it hehehe

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So once all 6 layers of the cake have been baked, make sure you pile them on the right way!

Purple first, then blue, then green, then yellow, then orange and red.

Wait for your cake to cool down for about an hour, then start decorating! I suggest covering the top with white, because that will add a nice touch of contrast and give your rainbow that extra burst of colour.

We covered the entire thing with white fondant and made the pink icing ourselves, using this recipe and pink food colouring. Tastes GREAT!

Sam also created these two little doves, because… I don’t even know. LOL.

What have doves got to do with rainbows?!?!

Nevertheless, they are supa dupa cute!!!! This is your cake, do whatever you want with it. If you’re baking it for someone else, use coloured icing to write a short personalized message!

It’s perfect for birthdays and festive events because it’s just so happy-looking and original.

Alternatively, if you can’t be bothered doing such detailed decoration (it really is hard work) then just drench your entire cake with a generous amount of white icing then top it off with rainbow sprinkles!!!

That was what I did for the tie-dye rainbow cake.

And that’s it, you’re done!!!!

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Put your cake into the fridge for a bit before serving, because cakes are always nicer when slightly chilled.

At first sight, the cake may look like nothing particularly spectacular (especially if you have a neutral and plain topping like all white) but once you slice it open…..


VOILA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



(shitty photo cuz this one was taken at night)

They will find that they have underestimated you and your seemingly boring cake, because people do NOT expect rainbow cakes!!! MUAHAHAHAH!

At least, that was the satisfaction I got when my family went “OOOoooOOohhh” when I showed them my cake!

….Okie, I hope I have successfully passed on my profound wisdom and knowledge to you so off you go, go make somebody’s day by baking them the most awesomest cake they have ever seen!

In my opinion, home made cakes baked with love are far better than buying some shitty Swensens ice cream cake or your average fruit cake or chocolate cake.

Come on, you have more sincerity and creativity than that, don’t you?!?

It’s never been all about the taste or professionalism, it’s always about how happy the cake makes that person!

And my rainbow cake makes ME very very happy!!

I don’t even know why.. I just can’t help but grin every time I look at it. I look at it more than I eat it.

Fluffy colourful goodness!

I love it when the house smells like batter, it gives off such a homely vibe….

I can’t wait for my next friend’s birthday, because I have tons of ideas I’d love to explore, and I’m gonna start baking a lot more!!!

I may not be fantastic at it, but it makes me happy and it’s so fun… and it makes the people who get to eat it happy, too!

My family actually gathered at 1:30am to eat my rainbow cake cuz that’s the time I finished baking it HAHAHAH wtf!

Rainbow crumbs!!! ^______^

One last picture and tip for you guys!

I didn’t put any layers of cream in between the cake because I didn’t want to break up the colour.

Since rainbow is the theme we’re going for, it would be silly to ruin it by having random layers of cream so either colour your cream accordingly with the rainbow, or make sure the top and side has lots of buttery sinful cream so that your cake will not be too dry!

And there you have it, now you know how to make a rainbow cake too!!!

It’s so easy and definitely a crowd pleaser – I can’t believe how many people approved of this cake when the previous ones I’ve baked were all so….. let’s just say, they weren’t too excited about it.

HAVE FUN!!!!!!!

Oh I can’t wait for the next cake I bake!

If you’re going to bake one according to my post, leave a comment with pics or let me know how it turned out for you, okie!!!

xoxo,
Jess
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