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Useful Decorating Tools

These are some wonderful handy tools that make decorating more enjoyable as well as more convenient.

 

Brushes

Brushes

Have a variety of sizes of brushes on hand for cookie decorating. Keep brushes
intended for food use separate from other paint brushes.

 

Concentrated Flavors and Oils

Concentrated Flavors and Oils

Add a touch of flavor without effecting the consistency of your dough or icing.
Add flavor by the drops, as these are much stronger than extracts.

 

Coupler and Tips

Couplers

Couplers fit into your pastry bag and enable you to change most decorating tips
without preparing a new pasty bag. Standard size, angled (used for hard to
reach spots), and large (used for larger tips) are available.

 

Decorating Tips

There are hundreds of tips available to achieve different looks for piped icings.

 

Dragees

Dragees

Dragees are gold and silver little balls used as sprinkles. The Food and Drug administrations
advises using them as decoration only.

 

Edible Glitter

Edible Glitter

Edible glitter adds a shimmery, textured touch to any cookie. The glitter needs
to be sprinkled on while the icing is wet, or spread piping gel on dry icing, and
sprinkle the glitter on top. Available in gold, silver, white (great for snow!),
plus many colors.

 

Food Color Pens

Food Color Pens

Use food color pens as you would ordinary pens to add fun and dazzling color to your cookies.
These pens are filled with food color, making the ink edible. Draw, color, outline or write
on most icings which form a crust.

Food Color

Food Color

Food color is available in four concentrated forms: liquid, paste, gel and powder.
I prefer paste, gel or powder. Liquid color is not as concentrated and will take
much more to achieve a bright color, and it may effect the consistency of the icing.

 

Luster Dust and Petal Dust

Luster Dusts and Petal Dusts

These dusts come in a variety of colors. In the dry form, use them
for subtle color. The dusts may be mixed with alcohol (white spirits) or lemon oil
for painting. Add just enough alcohol or lemon oil to achieve a paint consistency.
Luster dusts produce a shimmery, sheen finish and are available in several colors
including shades of metallic gold and silver. Petal Dusts are used to achieve deeper
hues with a matte finish. Simply use a food brush to decorate any icing that is
dry.

 

Mini Decorations

Mini Sugar Decorations or Lay-Ons

Edible sugar pieces in a variety of sizes and themes. Simply ice a cookie and place
one sugar decoration for a quick decorated cookie.

 

Paint Tray

Paint Tray

An inexpensive paint tray is ideal for filling with food color and water to create
an edible “watercolor” paint for accenting cookie icings.

 

Pastry Bag

Pastry Bags

Pastry Bags are available in many sizes. I prefer a 10″ or 12″ lightweight bag for
easy handling. Also available are disposable pastry bags which are inexpensive and
great for easy cleanup.

 

Parchment Cone

Parchment Triangles

Parchment cut in a triangle allows you to create your own disposable pastry bag.

 

Quilting Tool

Quilting Tool

This tool is used to give a quilt-like finish to fondant covered pieces as
well as a variety of uses when hand molding.

 

Angled Spatula

Spatulas

Stainless steel icing spatulas are wonderful for icing cookies. Available in straight,
angled or tapered.

 

Sprinkles

Sprinkles

There are so many sprinkle choices now to add special decorations to cookies: hearts,
lips, bears, flowers, Halloween bats, pumpkins, Christmas trees, and more. Also
available are traditional jimmies, dragees, non-pareils, sanding and coarse sugars.

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Useful Baking Tools

Before starting on your baking project, there are some essential equipment as well as some
wonderful handy tools that make baking more enjoyable as well as more convenient.

Cookie Sheets

Cookie Sheets

Everyone has a preference when choosing cookie sheets. I prefer shiny or the insulated cookie sheets.
I find cookies bake wonderfully on the insulated sheets. Dark or nonstick cookie sheets tend to brown
the bottoms of cookies too quickly. Choose cookie sheets with low sides or no sides
at all. Use a jelly roll pan for bar cookies only. The sides may cause your cookies
to bake unevenly. Only grease cookie sheets if the recipe calls for grease. Too
much grease (fat) causes cookies to spread quickly. Always start with cool cookie
sheets. If you place unbaked cookie dough on a warm sheet, your cookies may spread.
For even baking, only bake one sheet of cookies at a time.

 

Cookie Spatula

Cookie Spatula

Cookie spatulas are wonderful for removing cut-out cookie dough and placing them
on cookie sheets. They avoid stretching the dough. They are also great for removing
warm baked cookies from cookie sheets.

 

Cooling Rack

Cooling Racks

Placing cookies on a cooling rack after they are baked prevents cookies from
becoming soggy. Available in rectangles, circles, and also tiered which is
great for a small working space.


Measuring Cups

Measuring Cups

It is very important to measure accurately. Always use nesting cups for dry ingredients
like flour and sugar. It is not necessary to sift flour unless the recipe calls
for sifting. Scoop dry ingredients and level with a metal spatula or knife. Use
liquid measuring cups for liquid ingredients. Read the measurement at eye level.
My favorite measuring utensil: a “Wonder” cup which pushes ingredients like
peanut butter, brown sugar or shortening out, leaving none in the cup.

 

Pastry Wheel

Mini Pizza Cutter or Pastry Wheel

I find a mini pizza cutter is a must for cutting out patterns with a straight edge.
It is also handy for cutting around stamped cookies.

 

Oven Thermometer

Oven Thermometer

Check your oven temperature for accuracy. Invest in an oven thermometer. If your
oven is off more than 50 degrees, have it adjusted by a repair service. If the cookies
are turning brown too fast on the bottom, turn down the temperature of the oven.
If oven is set too low, there won’t be a huge change in appearance, but it may make
your cookies coarse and dry.

 

Parchment Paper

Parchment Paper

Parchment paper is wonderful for cookies. It saves your cookie sheets from wear
and tear and makes clean up easy. Too much grease or fat on a cookie sheet will
cause the cookies to spread very quickly. Instead bake the cookie on parchment paper.
It comes on a roll that looks like waxed paper, but it is bakeable. Simply tear
off a sheet and place on top of your cookie sheet. The sheets are reusable.

 

Pastry Cloth

Pastry Cloth

Roll out cookie dough on a pastry cloth so that the dough doesn’t stick to your
counter. Rub flour into cloth before rolling.

 

Perfection Strips

Perfection Strips

These strips are used to achieve perfectly even cookies every time. Place
dough between these plastic strips. With a rolling pin, roll over the
strips, leveling the dough.

 

Rolling Pins

Rolling Pins

There are a variety of rolling pins on the market today; marble, silicone, and my favorite,
the rolling pin with adjustable rings.  Use the rolling pin with adjustable rings to achieve
cookies with a perfect thickness all around.  No more burnt edges.

 

Rolling Pin Cover

Rolling Pin Cover

Rub flour into the rolling pin cover and place over rolling pin. Prevents dough
from sticking to rolling pin.

 

Silicone Baking Mat

Silicone Baking Mat

This non-stick baking/freezing mat is a pan liner made of food-grade
woven silicon. Its ultimate non-stick properties work well for cookies
because no greasing or special maintenance is necessary. Roll the
dough on the baking mat. Cut out shapes, remove excess dough
from around the cut-outs and slide the mat onto a cookie sheet. No
more distorted cookies.

 

Shaker

Sugar/ Flour Shaker

Great for powdered sugar , flour and edible glitter. Control amounts of flour added
to your work space when rolling out cookie dough with a flour shaker.