An AHA Moment…

Most of the time I try to plan my blog posts, but sometimes they just happen.  This is one of those times.  Just call it a blog of opportunity.

It all started with Justin Beiber cookies.  Yes, you heard me right, Justin Bieber. 

I always say I am not going to do this to myself anymore, but it was for my neighbor, and I really like her, AND she has mowed my lawn a few times, AND the clothes rack I “borrowed” last year is still in my garage, SOOOOOO…

The problem was not actually with the Justin Beiber cookie.  That was relatively easy, courtesy of my KopyKake. 

HOWEVER, the accent cookies caused quite a problem.

I had this idea to make music notes, but I wanted to give them a little SugarBelle flair, so I used a music note and smallish heart cutter to make a heart-bottomed music note.

Everything was SWELL until I picked them up {at about 11 last night} to decorate.

To my absolute horror, THEY BROKE!!!  Snapped right apart at the place where I’d attached them.

I totally had an “OH, $#*!” moment.

Then not long afterward I had another moment, an “AHA” moment.

These are the best because this is when we learn.

Tons of people have asked me why my cookies don’t break when I bake them together, and since I had never really had that problem, I didn’t know.  But now I do.

Most of the time when I connect cookies, they either have a very large surface area touching, or one is inserted into another so they actually are snugly secured…

However, in this case, they were only connected by a thin strip of cookie which did not hold up well to rough handling.

Also, in most cases I prefer to decorate cookies that are a day or two old.  The two main reasons I do this are because I feel like a cookie that has dried out a bit is less likely to leach oil into my royal icing, AND they aren’t so fragile.

In this particular case, I didn’t.  SOOOOO, to answer the question, experience has led me to believe that to assure that pieced cookies stick together, you must do two things.

  • Make sure they have a little something to stick to
  • give them a day or two to set up before frosting

This may not be the “whole story” but at the point, it’s the most educated answer guess I can come up with.

I’ll be sure to let you know if I have anymore AHA moments, and I hope you will do the same!

Oh yes, and one more little tidbit…sometimes a weak cookie is still decorable {I might have made that word up} even if it is on the verge of breaking.

A perfect example of this is my mom’s knitting cookies.  When I picked up the skein, I felt it begin to crack.  Since I only had one, I calmly put it back down and decorated it anyway.  Since it didn’t completely snap, the strength of the dried RI was enough to keep it together.  See?

Going back to my old rule, It’s not how well you cookie, it’s how well you can fix a screw-up… I did end up fixing the cookies.  You can probably get an idea of what I did from the pictures, but that’s another story for another day.

To sum it all up, all’s well that ends well!  Here they are!

I hope everyone has a little weekend baking on the agenda =)