Wednesday, November 18, 2015


This is such a fun cookie cutter - it makes a wonderful big 5 inch cookie! Jill brought me the cutter from Crate & Barrel last Thanksgiving and I was anxious to make it this year but I didn't quite know how to decorate it. I think turkeys are hard to decorate so I've avoided them in the past. 
I wanted to do a good job with this one. I baked the cookies and Jill was coming for the weekend to decorate them with me. We were short on time so I decided to have a plan to follow and I scanned the cookie cutter in Photoshop, colored it ginger and decorated it on my computer. Jill mixed the colors from my printout perfectly and we went to work. We haven't decorated cookies together for a long time. It was so fun and a happy collaboration I think!
This was the plan.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! 

- posted by Momsu

Sunday, October 25, 2015


When Nina told me she was going to put dots on her pumpkins this year I said, "Oh - I did that last year!" It's not as bad as it sounds. She wasn't here and I didn't post my dotty pumpkins so she didn't see them. I wasn't putting her down although it sounds that way. I'm sorry, Nina! 

I love polka dots - I've always loved polka dots. I don't know why - maybe its the simplicity and symmetry? Last year I ran out of time AGAIN and iced my Halloween cookies after Halloween which just doesn't work -

but later in November they turned up as favors on our Thanksgiving Day table and that worked. 

And as if there weren't enough polka dots I put them on hats and  

I put hats on gingerbread men! 


- posted by Momsu

Saturday, August 15, 2015


Recently Nina made bright colored flowers for friends.

We've had this set of cookie cutters for a very long time and have used all the sizes over and over again. 

Depending on how you decorate the cookie it turns into a variety of flowers. 

Varying the petal shape in icing makes a big difference. 

Color can change the whole feel of the cookie.  

And the center of the flower can add a different look too.

Jill made these for Easter one year with lots of different centers. 

and Nina made these for me for Mother's Day one year with happy faces.

Stop and smell the roses but take a taste of a six-petaled iced cookie flower! It's fun to bite off one petal at a time with the bigger cookies or pop a small one in your mouth whole. Yum!

- posted by Momsu

Sunday, July 19, 2015


Whenever someone is sick or injured or is recovering from still more back surgery (ahem!) Nina makes Magic Healing Cookies for them. The cookies can be any flavor that person is especially fond of. In my case it's GINGER of course! These big cookies are from Got Milk? the Cookie Book by Peggy Cullen - and they are very very good! And so are her many other cookie recipes. It is one of my favorite cookie books! 

Peggy says: My first experience west of the Rockies was as a baker on a cattle ranch in Idaho’s Sawtooth Valley. As an avid recipe snoop, it seemed from my New York City perspective that everybody's Mormon mom made a version of this cookie. Whenever I make the cookies east of the Hudson, I’m asked for the recipe.

To  my mind, they are the perfect cookies: crispy on the edges, soft and chewy in the center, with a sprinkling of crunchy sugar on top. As they bake, they puff up, heave a sigh, and then collapse as flat as can be. They get that nice cracked top like an old-fashioned ginger snap. Be careful not to overbake these cookies - burnt molasses is bitter.

Being sturdy and long-keeping (if they last, which they don’t) Mormon Molasses Spice Cookies are terrific in a lunch box, in the mailbox, or on a winter buffet table. They’re excellent dunked in a cold glass of  milk.


3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter,
         cut in pieces
1/4 cup dark unsulphured molasses
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar, plus 1/3 cup
2 teaspoons of baking soda
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Remove from the heat, and stir in the molasses and vanilla. Set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, sift the flour with 1 cup of the sugar, the baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. Whisk to combine.

Add the beaten egg to the cooled butter mixture and mix well with a fork. Using a rubber spatula, fold the flour mixture into the butter mixture. Cover the bowl and refrigerate until firm enough to form balls, about 15 minutes. Preheat oven to 375°F.

Place remaining 1/3 cup of granulated sugar in a shallow bowl. Scoop out walnut-size pieces of dough and roll into 1-inch balls. Toss the balls in the sugar to coat completely and place on ungreased baking sheets, about 2 inches apart.

Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until the centers no longer appear raw. (At 12 minutes you’ll have soft and chewy cookies; at 15 they’ll be crisp.) Let cool on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely. 

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

note: For larger cookies double the size of the balls and cook a little longer. 

Nina used light molasses and salted butter because that was what we had on hand. 

Thank you Peggy Cullen!

- posted by Momsu

Saturday, June 20, 2015


Our littlest decorator is five now and doing a VERY good job of decorating cookies! She made these especially for Grampa.

Meanwhile Nina decorated cookies for lots of dads.

Father's Day is such a great excuse to make something special. One year I made a blueberry pie - and for the first time the juices didn't run out of the stars. Yea! I think cutting stars out of the top crust was Nina's idea for the 4th of July one year. The trick is getting the top crust on the pie with the stars where you want them! 

Another year I made an apple pie with a crumb crust. Even though pie apples aren't at their best this time of year it's still our favorite pie - I like Macintosh apples for pie or Pippin if I can find them. But the best pie I ever made was from ugly little apples that came from a friend's apple tree here in San Diego! 

Some years I've tied up "HAPPY FATHER'S DAY" cookies in a goody bag. 

And one year Nina made BIG Snicker-doodles.

Recently we honored our DaddyO with mustache cookies on a stick.

 Of course he already has a mustache! That day everyone had a mustache! 

to everybody's dad

- posted bu Momsu

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


Do you remember Pogens? They appeared here (in California) in the 1970s and 80s. They were thin crisp ginger cookies in fun animal shapes decorated with little dots poked into the dough. We loved them but then one day they just disappeared! 

A few years ago Nina found a recipe online and began to make them for us. She adds 1/2 cup of flour to this recipe, chills the dough, rolls them 1/8" thick and cuts them into shapes. With a toothpick (the point cut off) she makes eyes and decorates them with dots before baking. The flat end of a cocktail pick or other small skewer will work too. 

The flavor is a little different than other ginger cookies I've tried. Looking at the recipe I discovered there is more cinnamon than ginger - twice as much. I think that's the secret. These cookies smell just like Pogens did - delicious! 

Thank you Nina for sending me Pogen hearts and flowers for Mother's Day and bringing back fond memories!

And - here are more from a few years ago when Nina first started to try to duplicate the recipe. 


Good job Nina!  

- posted by Momsu

Sunday, April 19, 2015


When Nina told me she had made Earth Day cookies I let out a sigh of relief - now we have something for the blog! 

Trees - that's perfect! We all love trees, don't we? 

So - this Earth Day plant a tree! Or make a cookie . . .

For more cookie trees look here or here or here and here.

- posted by Momsu

Sunday, March 22, 2015


A little girl's birthday is coming up and she's having a Strawberry Party. Of course we will need cookies for favors.

The flower is from a set of fondant cutters, and it was perfect for this! Notice that I used the complete flower and cut out part of the egg. The seam between the pieces is much more stable this way, especially when the cookie is iced with royal icing, which acts as a great stabilizer once it's dry.

The cookies are baked, decorated, individually bagged and in the freezer, awaiting the special day.

- posted by Nina

Momsu says - And here are the cookies ready to go home with everyone who came to the party. Good job, Nina!  .

Sunday, February 22, 2015


It's never too late to spread a little love around and this year it didn't happen for Valentine's Day cookie-wise - in this house anyhow. We had lots of chocolate and sugar cookie hearts but no "decorated" cookies. So here are some from a couple of years ago that were never posted. I am ALWAYS behind! At least it's still February! 

Red and pink are always in - chocolate cookies this time.

Polka dots are fun to make and also a favorite.

I had no luck the year I tried to make scallops by piping the icing - it was too runny and wanted to run off the cookie. I haven't tried again but could probably do better with a little more experience. 

The next year I tried dots instead which I liked better -

but then I tried dots on a wet edge and that worked well.  


- posted by Momsu