Sunday, December 11, 2011

Christmas Puzzle Cookies

So this isn't the prettiest picture ever, but I was packaging them tonight, and wanted to get a picture in so this would make sense. I thought Martha Stewart's gingerbread puzzle was a fun idea for little treats to go along with little gifts for the godchildren.  I knew going in that I'd not do all the royal and just use white icing, to meet the kids' diets. 
So a couple of tips from my first experience....
  • I didn't actually read the directions on Martha Stewart, which said to cut the cookies while still warm.  Instead, I cut them before baking.  Of course, they spread a little, so the puzzle's not a perfect fit, but the edges are cleaner.  I think if doing it again, I'd cut before baking, but I'd just be more careful not to scrunch the openings (like for the points of the star) when transferring the dough to the cookie sheet.
  • I used the top of a gladware container to cut the outline, and then either used a cookie cutter or just cut the puzzle pieces.
  • I was also really glad that I put each cookie puzzle with all its pieces together on the cookie sheet and then onto separate plates to cool.  I had put two cookies together in a container after cooling, and it was way more difficult to put together than I would have guessed.  When cutting them, I kept thinking I should try making the designs more difficult because these are going to be way too easy to put together.  But even with the icing, they (surprisingly) take a little effort.  
  • From how they look in the end and how they fit together, I think I liked the ones that have a cookie cutter cut-out in the middle.  I think I like the idea of the star and the tree in the top right corner, except that the star has no icing.  For puzzle difficulty, though, the bottom left, which is random pieces like the Martha Stewart example, would be my pick.
I think these ended up kind of fun, and I'm hoping to do another batch for my kids!

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