Monthly Archives: January 2012

Chinese 5 spice ginger snaps

For a printable version, click here

Chinese 5 spice ginger snaps

½ c. butter, at room temperature
2/3 c. firmly packed light brown sugar
2 c. flour
2 tsp. Chinese 5 spice powder
1 ½ tsp. ground ginger
1 ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. baking soda
3-5 Tbsp. hot water

Cream together sugar and butter.  Sift flour and spices together.  Add flour mixture gradually to the sugar and butter.  Mix ½ tsp. baking soda with 3 Tbsp. hot water until dissolved and add it to the flour mixture.  If necessary, add some water, 1 Tbsp. at a time until a dough forms.

For refrigerator cookies, dough can be shaped into a log and wrapped in plastic wrap.  For cut-out cookies, shape dough into a flat disc and wrap in plastic wrap.  Chill until firm.  Slice cookie log into 1/8” slices.  Or roll out dough between two pieces of plastic using bamboo skewers as a thickness guide and cut out shapes using cookie cutters.

Place cookies on lined or greased baking sheets.  Bake at 375 degrees for 8-10 mins. until golden brown.

Working with fondant

No fail sugar cookies recipe: click here for a printable version
Fondant instructions: click here for a printable version
Cupcake fondant roses: see below

NO FAIL SUGAR COOKIES
(from Kitchen Collectables)

This recipe is GREAT when using complex cookie cutters.  The dough holds its shape and won’t spread during baking.  Make sure you let your oven preheat for at least 1/2 hour before baking these or any other cookies.

6 cups flour
3 tsp. baking powder
2 cups butter
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract or desired flavoring (e.g., almond)
1 tsp. salt

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add eggs and vanilla.  Mix well. Mix dry ingredients and add a little at a time to butter mixture.  Mix until flour is completely incorporated and the dough comes together.

Chill for 1 to 2 hours (or see Hint below)

Roll to desired thickness and cut into desired shapes.  Bake on ungreased baking sheet at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until just beginning to turn brown around the edges.  This recipe can make up to 5-dozen 3” cookies.

HINT: Rolling Out Dough Without the Mess — Rather than wait for your cookie dough to chill, take the freshly made dough and place a glob between two sheets of parchment paper.  Roll it out to the desired thickness then place the dough and paper on a cookie sheet and pop it into the refrigerator.  Continue rolling out your dough between sheets of paper until you have used it all.  By the time you are finished, the first batch will be completely chilled and ready to cut.  Reroll leftover dough and repeat the process!  An added bonus is that you are not adding any additional flour to your cookies.


Fondant Instructions
(From the kitchen of Judy Wong)

 Fondant is available at Michael’s, JoAnn’s, and cake decorating stores like Do It With Icing, which is located at 7240 Clairemont Mesa Blvd / 858-268-1234 (one block west of 99 Market).

From package, break out a chunk of fondant.  Re-seal package so that the fondant does not dry out.  Knead fondant until workable and roll out onto a silicone sheet, parchment or wax paper.  Use a pair of skewers to keep fondant uniform in size. (It’s optional if you want to lightly dust work surface with powdered sugar or cornstarch.)  Lift and move the fondant as you roll.  This will prevent it from sticking to the surface.

Cookies with fondant:

1. Bake your favorite sugar cookie recipe or use the No Fail Sugar Cookie recipe provided above.

2. Cut fondant with same shape cookie cutters as used in your sugar cookies.

3. Brush cookies with shortening.

4. Place cut fondant on top of cookie.  Press to cover to edge of cookie (okay to have some edge of cookie showing).

5. Decorate cookies by adding texture, luster dust, edible pearls, fondant flowers* and piped icing.

Notes about fondant:

— *Fondant flowers can be cut out and shaped ahead of time.  Use piped icing to adhere to decorated cookies.

— Fondant cookies can keep for two weeks.  Best to keep in cellophane bag – not in Tupperware containers.  Do not put fondant cookies or fondant cupcakes in refrigerator.

— Fondant dries quickly.  Always keep covered to prevent drying when in use.  Leftover fondant should be tightly sealed in plastic wrap and kept in airtight container. Fondant has a shelf life of one year, as long as it is covered up.  Its enemy is air.  Do not refrigerate fondant.


Cupcake fondant roses
(From Bakerella)

For roses, cut rolled fondant into strips.  Roll strips and shape into roses.  Place on top of cupcakes.