How to Seal Dough

To seal dough, this depends on what type of dough you are sealing. If you’re sealing puff pastry, use a bit of water or egg to seal the edges together. You can pinch the pastry together to seal the dough.

Be sure not to overfill with filling. If any of your filling gets on the pastry you want to seal, this can make it difficult to seal the pastry together.

When making foods like a calzone or a sausage roll, make sure your dough is at room temperature. This will make it easy to roll out and seal your dough.

Once you’ve sealed the dough with your fingers by pushing down on the dough, use a fork to press down on the edges of the pastry to complete the seal. The calzone/dough pockets need to be poked on the top with a fork to allow for aeration. This helps let the steam out of your food when it’s cooking. The seal will remain intact without the steam trying to push open your pastry dough.

How to seal dough

How to seal puff pastry without eggs

You can seal puff pastry without eggs by using water. Dip your finger into a dish of water and run your finger down the pastry where you plan to seal the edges. Press the edges together. Then use a fork to push the seams together which will create a good seal for puff pastry.

How to seal pastry edges

Pastry edges can be sealed using water or egg along the very edge of pastry. Squish the pastry edges together once you have wet the edges with water or egg. This should hold the seal well for pastry.

How to seal pastry edges

What is a pastry crimper?

A pastry crimper seals the edges of dough and adds decoration to the dough as you run it along the edges. A pastry crimper is going to cut the dough for you to give you that beautiful edging on ravioli, pie crust, etc.

A pastry crimper is also known as a pastry edger.

You can make decorations for your pie crust using a pastry edger. If you want to make some decorations for the top of your pie crust, you can use cookie cutters to cut your pie crust into shapes. Then use your pastry edger to make the edges have a bit more texture and depth to them. Your guests will love how beautiful your pie turns out.

If you don’t have a pastry edger, you can also use your fingers to pinch the pie crust to make it have triangles all the way around the pie. Another way to decorate the pie ege is by pushing the dough in between your 1 index fingers and folding it in a tiny bit at an angle. This will create long pieces of dough that will fold in and create a rope looking decoration all around your pie. If you want a more simple design, push the tip of your finger into the dough all the way around the pie to make small rounded circles for your pastry edge. You can get creative with utensils at home by using a fork and criss crossing a design on your pastry edge.

pastry edger

Lemon Tart Garnish Ideas

Lemon Tart Garnish Ideas

Lemon tart garnishes can range from dusted powdered sugar to cookie cutter pie toppings.

Lemon Tart Decoration Ideas:

  • candied lemon slices
  • dusted powdered sugar
  • white chocolate scrolls – made using a potato peeler against a bar of white chocolate
  • melted white chocolate, then put 2 diagonal lines next to one another, and another 2 diagonal lines intersecting about an inch from the edge of the lemon tart
  • trio of blueberries
  • trio of blackberries
  • raspberries in the center
  • kiwi slices

How to make pie crust decorations

Pie crust decorations are made using leftover pie dough. The pie dough is then cut using cookie cutters and made into pie crust decoration that can be arranged on the top of a cooked and cooled pie.

How to make pie art using cutouts

Pie art is easy to do with some leftover pastry dough from making your pie.

  1. Roll out your leftover pie crust. The thickness of your pie art dough should be ~1/4”
  2. Using cookie cutters, carefully cookie cut the pie dough into shapes you want to top your pie with.
  3. Bake the pie art when you’re cooking your pie. Usually cooking them for 5-8 min until they just begin turning color on the edges. Do not overbrown them or they will be overcooked.
  4. Once your pie has finished cooking and cooling, arrange the pie art on your pie.
  5. Serve!
How to make pie art using cutouts

Pie crust cut outs are so simple and yet so stunningly beautiful to change your pie from boring to beautiful! Try to make them a theme for your guests so it goes with the occasion. If you don’t have any themed cookie cutters, stars and hearts are a great combo to try out.

how to make pie crust decorations

How to make pie crust flowers

To make pie crust flowers you have a few options to choose from. Pie crust flowers can be made using cookie cutters. Once you’ve decided on your cookie cutters, you can use a narrow tool to add any more decorations to your pie cutouts. You can add stems, details, drawings on your pie cutouts before baking.

How to make rose pie crust flowers

Rose pie crust flowers are made using a circle cookie cutter. Then roll the dough up. Cut the dough in half in the middle. Stand the rose pie crust flower up on the flat side. Bake the rose pie crust flower with it standing up. It should just be starting to turn a light brown, and then it will be finished baking.

You can bake pie art for 5-8 min at 375 degrees F. These can be baked on an aluminum baking pan at the same time as your pie goes in the oven. Just make sure to watch your pie crust art very closely to make sure they don’t burn.

how to make pie crust decorations

Pie crust decorations will be a great decoration to add to a pie or a tart. You can use an egg wash (1 egg + 1 tbsp milk) and brush your pie crust decorations before they go into the oven for an added glistening effect for your pie crust decorations. You can also dust them with powdered sugar for a starry look to them. Get creative and start decorating your pie crusts the next time you’re having guests over for pie!

How to Dice Butter

Dice butter by getting your exact amount out of your fridge. The butter should be cold before dicing. Put the butter on a cutting board. Slice the butter using a knife every 1 cm. Slice the butter the opposite way creating squares that are 1 cm in thickness. Turn the butter onto it’s side, and slice the butter horizontally every 1 cm. Now you have diced your butter to create cubes of butter that are 1 cm x 1 cm x 1 cm.

What is cold butter

Cold butter is butter that is in the fridge which has a temperature of 2-6 degrees Celsius. Typically cold butter is used to cut into recipes used for baking scones and pastry.

How to cut butter into flour using a food processor

Cutting butter into flour with a food processor is very simple.

  1. Set up your food processor using your S blade.
  2. Place all of your dry ingredients into the food processor.
  3. Place cold butter that has been cubed into the food processor.
  4. Pulse the food processor in short intervals until the butter/flour mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

How to slice butter

Butter that needs to be sliced must be at fridge temperature. Get a sharp knife and put the butter on a cutting board. Place your knife as close to the edge of the butter as possible and push down your knife into the butter. Your butter should cut nicely into sections.

What is the tool that cuts fat into flour

The tool that is used to cut fat into flour is called a pastry blender. A pastry blender has sharp metal running the length of the tool that cuts butter into sections. The pastry blender is pressed into the butter and then turn a 1/4 turn when in the dry ingredients. This creates the coarse crumbs.

How to grate butter without a grater

Have your butter in the freezer before you try to grate your butter. If you don’t have a grater, you can use a potato peeler to grate butter for your recipe. A potato peeler is an easy to use tool to grate butter without a grater. It will create longer strands of butter than a grater, but it will work in a pinch.

What can you bake with unsalted butter

Unsalted butter is used in baking for recipes that need a controlled amount of salt. Salt can add a lot of flavor in recipes which can ruin the flavor if you use salted butter instead of unsalted butter. Unsalted butter is much fresher than salted butter. Unsalted butter is only has a shelf life for 1 month, versus 3-4 months for salted butter.

You can bake several foods with unsalted butter:

  • Croissant dough
  • Pastry cream
  • Scones
  • Caramel sauce
  • Pastry
  • Pie crust
  • Tart shells

Why do you cut butter into flour?

Butter is cut into flour to create small pieces of butter that resemble coarse crumbs. The small pieces of butter melt into the dough as it bakes. This creates flakes of buttery pastry that melt in your mouth. Pastries that are made with butter that is cut into flour need to be carefully mixed when adding liquid ingredients. The pastry dough should not be overmixed. Make sure you use gentle mixing for your making your pastry dough.

How to Fold Croissant Dough

Croissant dough needs to be meticulously folded, rolled and rested at specific times for it to turn out how you want it to.

How to make a butter sheet

To create a butter sheet, bring your unsalted butter to room temperature. Typically it’s about 1 1/2 cups of butter to create a butter sheet.

Place a silicone mat on an aluminum baking sheet. Put your room temperature butter on the silicone mat. Have your tape measure ready for your specific measurements your recipes requires. Using a spatula, push the butter to move it onto the silicone mat to spread it out. Try to make the butter sheet the same thickness throughout the rectangle you’re creating. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Use your spatula to push the butter into itself to create corners that you need for your measurements. Place your butter sheet in the fridge for 30 min. Then it’s time to place it into the dough.

How to place butter in croissant dough

Once you’re ready to place your butter into your croissant dough, get your croissant dough and butter layer out of the fridge. Peel your butter layer off of the silicone mat. Arrange your croissant dough on the bottom, and your butter layer at a diagonal to the dough rectangle. Try to place the butter as close as possible that you think each of the sides of dough will comfortably go over your butter layer. Then using your fingers, fold the dough over the butter layer to create an envelope. Seal the envelope by pushing the dough together at the seams.

How to make butter sheet
How to place butter in croissant dough

Now it’s time to fold your croissant dough by laminating the butter.

How to laminate croissant dough

Laminating dough is defined as creating layers of butter in between pastry.

Begin by rolling out your envelope croissant dough = 20” x 10”. Then fold your croissant dough into a letter shape. Fold the bottom to 1/3 of the way up. Then fold the top 1/3 of the way down.

how to fold croissant dough
how to laminate croissant dough

Now you’ve created 3 layers of butter. Roll out your dough again to 20” x 10”. Fold again like a letter. You’ve now made 9 layers of butter laminated croissant dough. Place it in the fridge for 30 min. You’re ready for your final folding of croissant dough. Fold like a letter. You have 81 layers of butter laminated croissant dough. You’ve completed your laminating butter layers. It needs to rest for 4-24 hours in the fridge before shaping your croissants.

Laminated dough example

81 layers of butter for croissant dough

This is an example of 81 layers of butter laminated for croissant dough.

How to Shape Croissants

Roll out your croissant dough until it’s 8”x20”. It should be pretty thick ~ a couple of cm’s thick. Cut your dough into 4”x 5” sections. Cut the rectangle into a triangle by slicing the rectangle from point to point. Stretch the triangle to an 8” long piece of croissant dough. To shape your croissant dough, make a small slit in the bottom of the croissant ~1/2 cm. It should be cut right at the base in the middle. Then roll your croissant up. Place the pointed end down to the pan to hold the croissant closed.

how to cut croissant dough

If you’re looking for chocolate croissants, Cut your 4” x 5” rectangle in half to create 2 – 2” x 5” strips. Stretch the strips until they’re 8” long. Place semi-sweet chocolate/chocolate chips on one end of the strip of dough ~10 chocolate chips. Roll the doll over the chocolate chips. Continue rolling until the end of the dough. Place the end of the dough down onto the aluminum baking pan.

how to shape croissants

How to Proof Croissants

Proof croissants by letting your shaped croissants sit for 1 hour at room temperature, and then 1 hour in the fridge. Place cling wrap over the croissants loosely to prevent them from drying out. Then you can egg wash and bake your croissants.

pain au chocolat proofing
how to proof croissants overnight
croissants with egg wash

How to Proof Croissants Overnight

Proof croissants overnight by having your shaped croissants for 1 hour at room temperature, and then overnight in the fridge. The croissants can be in the fridge for 12 hours before baking. Be sure to put cling wrap over your croissants while they’re proofing to prevent them from drying out.

Where to store freshly baked croissants

Store your freshly baked croissants in an airtight container at room temperature. Let them fully cool before storing them. Your freshly baked croissants will store for up to 2 days at room temperature.

How to Serve Ice Cream at a Dinner Party

Serving ice cream at a dinner party can be a fun and exciting dessert to serve your guests. Dinner parties are typically fancy, formal, and people expect something more than the norm.

To impress your guests, there are a few ways to serve ice cream for your dinner party.

chocolate ice cream in a silicone mold with caramel and oreo crumbs

How to Serve Ice Cream Buffet Style for a Dinner Party

Serving ice cream buffet style is all in the preparation. You need to have a few small bowls for toppings for your ice cream. Select 4-5 toppings for your dinner party. Prepare your toppings in your small bowls before your guests arrive. Pick 1-3 flavors of ice cream for a bit of variety. Let your guests make their own buffet style ice cream.

25 Toppings for ice cream:

  • Oreo crumbs
  • sprinkles
  • caramel sauce
  • chocolate sauce
  • strawberry sauce
  • bananas
  • mango
  • kiwis
  • strawberries
  • blueberries
  • blackberries
  • apples
  • pecans
  • Rolos
  • chocolate chips
  • peanut butter cups
  • whipped cream
  • pretzels
  • marshmallows
  • salted caramel sauce
  • toffee bits
  • hot fudge
  • slivered almonds
  • mint chocolate chips
  • brownie pieces

How to Serve Layered Ice Cream for a Dinner Party

Making a layered ice cream for a dinner party should be prepared 1 day in advance to have the ice cream freeze well before serving.

You’ll need:

  • as many small half sphere silicone molds as guests coming to your party
  • 3 types of ice cream that go well together, or 2 types of ice cream + chocolate ganache that has been frozen
  • 1-3 toppings for the ice cream

Decide if you want to do 3 layers of ice cream, or 2 layers of ice cream and 1 inner layer of chocolate ganache. You could make dark chocolate ganache, milk chocolate ganache or white chocolate ganache as your center filling. This should be made the day before you’re preparing your molds, and then frozen so you’re ready to fill your silicone molds the following day.

Begin by selecting the ice cream for your outer layer. Your outer layer will be the one that will have your toppings on it.

how to put ice cream in silicone mold for dessert

Place your ice cream in the silicone mold. Use a metal spoon to press the ice cream around so that all of the sides are covered in ice cream. Try to make it a 1/2 cm in thickness. Place each silicone mold in the freezer in an airtight container as you complete them. They will start to melt very quickly and it will be messy.

Freeze for 30 min – 1 hour. Then you’re ready for your next layer. Select your inner layer of ice cream. Use a fresh metal spoon to put the ice cream in the molds. Press the ice cream into the first layer so it’s completely covered. The thickness isn’t as important for this one, just make sure you leave a bit of space for the center flavor.

Freeze for 30 min – 1 hour. Now you’re ready for your final layer. Use a melon baller or a fresh spoon to scoop your center layer of ice cream or ganache. Chocolate ganache is typically very hard when it comes right out of the freezer, so it’s best if you thaw it out for 5-8 min before trying to scoop it. Press your final layer into your silicone mold. It doesn’t have to be flat by any means, just make sure it’s filled and pressed into your second layer.

Freeze your silicone mold dessert overnight.

how to make desserts in silicone molds

When you’re ready to serve your ice cream for your dinner party, first remove the silicone mold from your ice cream. Use your fingers on either side of the silicone mold to peel the outer silicone mold off of the ice cream, with your thumb on the top of the mold pushing the ice cream out. Try to take them out and place them directly onto your serving plate.

Once you have all of your desserts on their serving plates, you can top your ice cream. Use 1-2 toppings for your layered ice cream dessert.

Tartufo made with silicone mold chocolate ice cream at home
Tartufo made with silicone mold

Creating this layered ice cream dessert is called a “Tartufo”.

What is a Tartufo?

A tartufo is an Italian dessert made of 2 or more ice cream flavors. The center is usually fruit filled – raspberry, strawberry or cherry. It’s topped with chocolate, cocoa powder, cinnamon or nuts traditionally.

This is one of the most impressive desserts to serve at a dinner party. It’s fairly simple, but it is time consuming layering the ice cream. Your guests will love pressing their spoon into their dessert and seeing the layers.

How to Serve Ice Cream at a Dinner Party

How to Make Pizza Sauce Without Tomato Paste

Typically you don’t make pizza sauce with tomato paste because it’s not necessary. Pizza sauce is usually made with crushed tomatoes/whole tomatoes (then it’s blended at the end), fresh basil, minced garlic, oregano, sugar, onions, olive oil, and butter.

How to Make Pizza Sauce Without Tomato Paste
How to Make Pizza Sauce Without Tomato Paste

How to Make Pizza Sauce Without Tomato Paste

Step by step guide how to make pizza sauce without using tomato paste
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 15 mins
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course condiment
Servings 2 cups

Ingredients
  

  • 1 28 ounce can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
  • 1 tbsp butter unsalted
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tsp oregano dried
  • pinch red pepper flakes
  • to taste salt
  • handful fresh basil separate into leaves and stems
  • 1 medium onion cut in half
  • 1 tsp sugar

Instructions
 

  • Place olive oil and butter in a large saucepan over low-medium heat. Add in 2 cloves of minced garlic and sauté for a couple of minutes until fragrant.
    herbs for pizza sauce
  • Add oregano and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Place the whole can of tomatoes and juice into a large bowl. Use a pastry blender to crush the tomatoes into a bit smaller pieces. Add crushed tomatoes to the saucepan. Separate the basil leaves from the stems. Add 3-4 stems of fresh basil, mix together and cook for 3-4 min.
    crushing tomatoes with a pastry blender
  • Add sugar to the saucepan. Cut the onion in half leaving the root in tact. Peel the outer layer off of the onion and discard. Place the peeled 1/2 onions face down in the sauce and cook for 45 min on low.
    infusing onions into pizza sauce
  • Cut basil leaves into strips. Add the basil leaves after 45 min and cook for 5-15 min. They can turn bitter if you cook them for too long, so best to cook them for as little time as possible. Fresh basil will wilt and combine in the sauce easily using a wooden spoon to press them into the sauce.
    fresh basil for pizza sauce
  • Remove onions and basil stems from the sauce using a strainer and discard. Blend the pizza sauce with a blender until smooth.
    How to Make Pizza Sauce Without Tomato Paste
  • Pizza sauce is ready to use.
    how to make homemade pizza sauce
Keyword sauce

Can you use pasta sauce as a pizza base

You can use pasta sauce as a pizza base in a pinch. Try to add fresh basil, a little tomato paste, and a bit of sugar to thicken it up. Alternatively, you could add crushed tomatoes or fresh diced tomatoes to thicken up your pasta sauce for your pizza base.

Other uses for pizza sauce

  • Dipping sauce for garlic sticks
  • Dipping sauce for bread
  • Pizza pinwheels
  • Breadmaker pizza pretzels
  • Pizza bites
  • Pepperoni pizza pinwheels
bread maker pizza pretzels recipe

What is the pizza sauce made of?

Pizza sauce is made of:

  • Crushed tomatoes/whole tomatoes
  • Fresh basil
  • Minced garlic
  • Oregano
  • Sugar
  • Onion
  • Olive oil
  • Butter

Are pizza and marinara sauce the same?

Pizza and marinara sauce are similar, but not the same. Pizza sauce and marinara sauce are both made with whole tomatoes. Marinara sauce is pasta sauce, which typically has tomato paste in it, along with diced onions, and possibly other vegetables to make it the base of a meal. Pizza sauce has onions infused with it, and usually has fresh basil cooked in it, unlike marinara sauce.

What is the tomato sauce on pizza called?

In North America it’s called pizza sauce, or tomato-garlic sauce. In Italy, they call it marinara sauce. In North America they call pasta sauce marinara sauce. So it really depends on which area you live when deciding what to call pizza sauce.

What can I add to marinara sauce for pizza

You can add fresh basil, olive oil, butter, sugar, minced garlic, and oregano to marinara sauce to make pizza sauce.

What is the best melting cheese for pizza?

The best melting cheese for pizza is mozzarella cheese. Mozzarella cheese is creamy, thick, easy on the mouth, and has a squishy texture. The texture makes it stringy when it melts. This is due to how it’s manufactured. Mozzarella cheese is kneaded and stretched when it’s processed. That’s why you get strings of cheese coming off of your pizza when you take a slice off of your pizza. It melts effortlessly when it’s baked on top of pizza in a clay oven.

In Italy they use fresh mozzarella for their best cheese on top of a pizza. You don’t need as much fresh mozzarella on top of a pizza as regular mozzarella.

What’s the difference between fresh mozzarella and regular mozzarella?

Regular mozzarella cheese has had the majority of its moisture removed so it’s considered a low moisture cheese. Regular mozzarella cheese is dried longer, and contains more salt. It has a rubbery feel to it, and easily browns and crisps up when cooked on a pizza in a hot oven.

Fresh mozzarella is purchased with water or brine surrounding the cheese to keep the moisture content high within the cheese. Since it’s only good for about a week after production, it’s best used as soon as you purchase it. It can be vacuumed sealed and will stay good for a bit longer. The high moisture content in fresh mozzarella means that it melts and spreads, but typically does not brown. It’s consistency is much softer and can easily be squished between your fingers, unlike regular mozzarella.

margarita pizza homemade

How do you thicken marinara sauce for pizza?

Thicken marinara sauce by adding fresh basil, minced garlic, oregano, sugar, olive oil, and butter to make pizza sauce.

What cheese do Italians use for pizza?

Italians use fresh mozzarella for their pizza.

What makes Italian pizza different?

Italian pizza is different from American pizza because they use fresh mozzarella, olive oil on their pizza crust, and bake it in a wooden fire oven. The crust is much thinner in Italian pizza, so thin that you typically have to eat it with a fork and knife. If you go to Naples, they are famous for their pizza without pizza sauce. They use olive oil instead of pizza sauce.

what makes italian pizza different

How to Bake Perfect Sugar Cookies

Jump to Recipe

Baking perfect sugar cookies is something that takes awhile to perfect. The key to baking perfect sugar cookies is:

  • rolling out your dough with no imperfections or cracks
  • chilling your dough – this will make it very easy to use cookie cutters, so your dough will keep it’s shape
  • baking your cookies until they just start turning light brown on the very edges. Do not overbake or they will be too brown and taste overdone
  • cooling your cookies fully before decorating
how to bake perfect sugar cookies
how to bake perfect sugar cookies

What is the difference between royal icing and regular icing?

Royal icing uses egg whites and icing sugar. This creates a stiff icing. You can thin it out a little using a tiny bit of water. After you have colored your icings, you can flood your cookies using the thin icing. Next, you can decorate your cookies once your flooded icing is dry. Use your stiffer icing and create designs on your cookies. Royal icing is different than regular icing in that it will set and become dry. This makes your cookies stackable, and will not be smudged once they are dry. Regular icing is usually buttercream icing. It is made using butter/shortening, vanilla, milk, and icing sugar. It has a bit of a different makeup, so it tastes a bit sweeter than royal icing. Regular icing is different than royal icing in that it will not dry. It remains a wet icing. But, it’s very easy to decorate using piping tips and will create beautiful designs. It’s a sweeter icing that some people prefer over royal icing.

chewy sugar cookies with frosting

How do you make cookies with royal icing?

Make cookies with royal icing by first preparing your cookies. You’ll want to bake sugar cookies, as they are able to be decorated easily, and you can cut them into different shapes. Let the cookies cool ~20 min. Floor your cookies first, then let them dry for a few hours, or overnight. Then continue decorating your cookies using different colored icing. Once your cookies are fully decorated, let them dry for a couple of hours. Then you can stack them nicely in an airtight container. They will stay good for about 5 days at room temperature, or up to 2 weeks in the fridge.

how to decorate sugar cookies with sprinkles

How do you get good at decorating cookies?

You get good at decorating cookies by practicing your piping skills. Once you’ve made royal icing and have mastered how to flood your cookie, start experimenting with different piping tips. Watch videos to perfect your technique. Try making a goal for yourself to master 1 tip for every batch of cookies. You’ll get the hang of it in no time!

how to flood sugar cookies

How do you decorate cookies after baking?

Decorate cookies after baking by letting them cool to room temperature. Prepare your icing during this time by making either buttercream icing, or royal icing. Color your icing using gel coloring or liquid food coloring. Once your cookies are cooled, you can start decorating them. If you’re using buttercream icing, you’re ready to start piping your designs onto your cookie. Add your sprinkles/adornments at the end of decorating. If you’re using royal icing, flood your cookie first, add any adornments/sprinkles then let it dry. Finish decorating your cookie using different colors and designs. Let them fully dry before stacking them together. Store in an airtight container. Buttercream iced cookies should be eaten within a few days. Royal iced cookies can be stored for up to 5 days at room temperature.

sugar cookies that hold their shape

What is the easiest way to decorate cookies?

The easiest way to decorate cookies is by putting sprinkles on the cookies right after they come out of the oven. As the cookies cool, the sprinkles will adhere to the cookie. Alternatively, you can flood your cookie with royal icing, then add sprinkles right after you’ve flooded it. Let the cookie dry and they’re ready to be packed away for safe keeping.

How do you ice sugar cookies for beginners?

We recommend making buttercream icing for beginners. Icing sugar cookies as a beginner is a steep learning curve. If you get frustrated, you can easily use a knife to put the icing on the cookie. Start by learning how to use piping tips by watching videos. Try out 2-3 tips to see if you can improve your skills. Once you get better at piping buttercream, you can learn how to decorate cookies using royal icing. It will be another learning curve when you use royal icing. From learning how thin to make your icing for flooding, to having colors blend together if they’re piped too quickly, you’ll take awhile to feel comfortable decorating sugar cookies.

how to bake perfect sugar cookies

How to Bake Perfect Sugar Cookies

Step by step guide how to bake perfect sugar cookies
Prep Time 3 hrs 30 mins
Cook Time 36 mins
Total Time 4 hrs 6 mins
Course Dessert
Servings 30 cookies

Ingredients
  

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar granulated
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • Cream butter and sugar together using a stand mixer on high speed for a couple of minutes until fluffy.
  • Add the egg to your mixture and cream together for 30 seconds. Add vanilla and mix again until fully combined. Scrape the slides of the bowl using a spatula to have the mixture fully homogenized.
  • In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt and mix together.
  • Slowly add your dry ingredient bowl to your creamed mixture. Have your mixer on low speed when you're combining them together.
  • Check your dough to see how it feels. If it's sticking to your hands add a bit more flour to the dough – 1 tbsp.
  • Separate your dough in half. Roll out your dough by flouring the surface of a silicone mat. Flour your rolling pin lightly. Place your dough on top of the floured silicone mat and roll it to 1/4" thickness. Make sure there are no imperfections on the top of your dough. Roll it out so it looks even, with no cracks through it. Repeat with the other dough half.
  • Place plastic wrap on top of the dough and put in the fridge for 1-2 hours. You can keep the dough in the fridge for up to 2 days before baking.
  • Remove the dough from the fridge and use cookie cutters to cut the dough into cookies. Once you've used your dough to create your first batch of cookies, reroll the dough out to use up the remaining dough to make more cookies. Place the cookies on an aluminum baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. No greasing needed.
  • Bake cookies for 11-12 min at 350°F. Your cookies will be finished baking when the edges start turning light brown. Do not overbake. The whole cookie will turn brown if they are overdone. Let the cookies cool for a few min on the baking sheet. Then transfer the cookies to finish cooling on a wire rack ~20 min.
  • Decorate your cookies using royal icing or buttercream icing.
Keyword cookies

32 Things to Dip Bread In

Dipping bread into freshly made dips and sauces is one of the most delicious foods you can eat. Warm fresh bread dipped into olive oil and balsamic vinegar is so simple, yet the flavor is so powerful. Here are a few other ideas on what to dip bread in:

  • crab dip
  • extra virgin olive oil and balsamic reduction
  • spinach dip
  • tomato dipping sauce
  • shrimp dip
  • garlic dip
  • queso dip
  • French onion dip
  • bacon cheese dip
  • corn dip
  • extra virgin olive oil, fresh basil, minced garlic, sundried tomatoes, grated parmesan cheese
  • jalapeno popper dip
  • pizza sauce
  • chili queso dip
  • garlic parmesan olive oil bread dip
  • cream cheese taco dip
  • fresh pesto and olive oil
  • cream cheese, bacon, cheese, and green onion dip
  • spinach and artichoke dip
  • dill pickle dip
  • butter
  • guacamole
  • tzatziki
  • hummus
  • green olive dip
  • Mediterranean feta dip
  • deviled egg dip
  • beer cheese dip
  • cilantro lime avocado dip
  • olive, artichoke and feta dip
  • party chip dip
  • everything bagel dip
bamboo cutting board fresh bread

What kind of bread is best for dipping?

The best kind of bread for dipping is French bread, homemade crusty bread, or focaccia bread.

Select a bread that’s fresh, fluffy, bounces back easily, and isn’t too dense.

How to serve your bread for dipping?

Serve your bread on a large platter. Cut your bread into bite sized pieces that are 1-2” long. People will be less likely to double dip if you cut the bread into small pieces. You could also put toothpicks into the bite sized pieces for easy dipping if your sauce isn’t too thick. This will work well for thin sauces or oil based sauces.

things to dip bread in

What kind of olive oil is best for dipping bread with?

The best olive oil for dipping bread with is extra virgin olive oil. It’s unrefined, making it the best possible olive oil you can use. It has low levels of oleic acid, making it much less acidic than regular olive oil. Since it’s less acidic, it’s easier on the mouth making it smooth and tasty to eat.

Make Ahead Crostini Appetizer Recipe Ideas

Crostini appetizers are very fun to make and look incredible for a serving platter! Most crostini appetizers are best made right before serving, but we came up with a few make ahead crostini appetizer recipe ideas.

prosciutto appetizer bread

These crostini appetizers can be made ahead in the morning of your party, or the evening before your party. The trick is to have your crostini, then put fruit slices, or cheese on the crostini. Next, place your jelly/jam, on top. Finally, place your nuts, herbs, etc. on top. Wait until just before you have your party to add your honey or balsamic reduction. You’ll want to add these just before your party so it doesn’t soak into the bread and make it soggy. Store your prepared crostini appetizers in an airtight container in the fridge until you’re ready to prepare your serving plate.

  • Apple slices, feta, walnuts, honey
  • Fresh mozzarella, cherry tomatoes (halved), strips of fresh basil, balsamic reduction
  • Brie, blueberry jam, mint leaves
  • Brie, apple slices, honey, walnuts
  • Brie, pear slices, arugula, balsamic reduction

9 Crostini Crackers Recipe Ideas

Crostini cracker recipes are easy and fun to make. Place all of your finished crostinis on a new serving platter for your guests to enjoy. Crostini crackers are best made right before serving. The longer the liquid leaks into the bread, the more soggy they will be. Avoid this by making them just before serving. Aim to make at least 3 different types of crostini cracker appetizers so your guests have a variety to choose from.

  • Goat cheese, prosciutto, spinach, honey, balsamic reduction
  • Fig jam, brie, prosciutto, arugula
  • Ricotta, sliced strawberries, strips of fresh basil, balsamic reduction
  • Cream cheese, fresh pesto, diced tomatoes, parsley
  • Mashed avocado, arugula, cajun shrimp
  • Ricotta, peaches, walnuts, honey
  • Cream cheese, smoked salmon, capers, fresh dill
  • Ricotta, sundried tomatoes, strips of fresh basil
  • Goat cheese, sliced apricots, arugula, balsamic reduction

Crostini appetizers with goat cheese can easily be changed into using ricotta cheese or cream as an easy substitution. 

If you’re feeling up for a bit more of a challenge, try making a meatball crostini appetizer plate. Make mini meatballs for your crostinis. Then top the crostini with a bit of tomato sauce, and place your mini meatball on top of it. Serve them immediately, your guests will love to eat them warm. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/mini-meatball-crostini-3582014

12 Guacamole Crostini Cracker Recipe Ideas

Guacamole crostini crackers are one of the most popular appetizers you can make your guests. Make your guacamole, and smear on the crostini using the back of a spoon. You can top the guacamole crostini with:

  • Cajun shrimp
  • Pistachios, fresh cilantro
  • Pineapple pieces
  • Salami
  • Caramelized mushrooms and fresh oregano leaves
  • Sliced radishes
  • Feta cheese and diced tomatoes
  • Halved cherry tomatoes
  • Smoked salmon
  • Fresh mozzarella
  • Prosciutto
  • Pomegranate seeds

If you don’t have the exact ingredients listed above, try mixing them up with your own flavors using different jellies, jams, cheeses, meat, and herbs. You can come with a ton of different recipes on your own like you might love!

crostini with brie honey almonds

12 Lavender Spice Recipes

Lavender is one of the most interesting spices you can use in your at home recipes. Harvest your lavender and dry it out so you can use it for a ton of new recipes!

What does lavender ice cream taste like?

Lavender ice cream has floral notes, and tastes neutral, not as sweet as say, vanilla ice cream. It’s a lighter flavor that pairs well with flavors such as earl grey, vanilla or honey.

lavender earl grey vanilla ice cream

3 Vegan lavender recipes

When to harvest French lavender

Harvest French lavender during June and July by cutting the stems right below the flowers. Harvesting French lavender will give you cuttings in about 2-3” long pieces of lavender.

How to deadhead French lavender

Deadhead French lavender 2-3 times throughout the summer months to promote growth of your French lavender plant. Cut the stems right below the flowers after they have bloomed and start to die off. The plant will get more dense by deadheading it. Don’t be afraid of cutting off some of the newly budding lavender. Where you cut the stems of the dead French lavender, this will give you 2-4 more lavender bud nodes. By deadheading your French lavender plant the flower head will fill out more evenly. Cut 2” below foliage level for the best results. You can use shears or pruning cutters to deadhead your French lavender plant.

4 ideas for what to do with dead lavender flowers

You can cut off a few of your dead lavender flowers below the bud to give you a 2-3″ piece of lavender. After you cut the stems, you can use your dead lavender flowers as:

  • potpourri in a bathroom
  • in your clothes drawer to freshen them up
  • a content in making your own deodorant
  • a content in making your own soap

What to do with lavender after it blooms

Harvest and dry your lavender after it blooms. Be sure to store your freshly harvested lavender in an airtight container in a dark room to keep the most flavor possible. You can use your preserved lavender after it blooms all year round for different baking recipes.

lavender spice recipes