New Halloween Cookie Mold Design

 

Halloween Owl Stoneware Cookie Mold from ZANDA PANDA

Halloween Owl Stoneware Cookie Mold from ZANDA PANDA

 

I have a new cookie mold design for you.  This one’s for Halloween – or anytime for owl aficionados 🙂

It’s cute because it has a heart-shaped tummy, and adorable owl cookies tell your favorite Trick or Treaters how much you love them 🙂

For info on using the mold for cookies, and to see more Halloween designs, visit http://zandapanda.com/HalloweenStonewareCookieMolds.asp  There’s a tutorial and a video on how to use my stoneware cookie molds.  And a recipe that’s perfect for Halloween treats.

You can order your wise and lovable owl mold from my Etsy page:  https://www.etsy.com/listing/205955390/halloween-owl-cookie-mold-for-halloween?

 

Happy Halloween!

 

 

 

Chipotle-Almond Butterflies, Baby goats and Apple Blossoms – It Finally Feels Like Spring!

Baby Goats, Chipotle-Almond Butterflies and Apple Blossoms…Spring!

Chipotle-Honey GoaChipotle-Honey Goat Cheese and Almond Butterflies Made with ZANDA PANDA's Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold.  Teacup and saucer courtesy RiRi's Pottery Haust Cheese and Almond Butterflies made with ZANDA PANDA's Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold

Chipotle-Honey Goat Cheese and Almond Butterflies Made with ZANDA PANDA’s Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold. Teacup and saucer courtesy RiRi’s Pottery Haus

It’s finally feeling like spring and that called for a trip to Beltane Farm to see the baby goats and get some goat cheese and milk.   They’re hosting cheese tastings every Sunday through the month of May.
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Cheese Tasting at Beltane Farm

Cheese Tasting at Beltane Farm

It was wonderful tasting the different varieties of goat cheese.  It was hard to decide which were our favorites.  Here, we’re tasting chèvre with chives, dill, Herbes de Provence or chipotle-honey.

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My favorite Baby Goat

My favorite Baby Goat

Seeing the baby goats and other animals was even more fun than the cheese tasting.  I think this little guy was definitely the cutest of the bunch.  The new kids will be kept for the herd, or sold either as milk producers, or as all natural lawn mowers.

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Armando the Adorable

Armando the Adorable

I think his name should be Armando…He’ll be going to a neighboring farm and it’ll be his job to mow the lawn.  I think Nick’s favorite animal may have been Nestor, the guard donkey.

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Chipotle-Honey Goat cheese and Almond Butterflies

Chipotle-Honey Goat Cheese and Almond Butterflies made with ZANDA PANDA’s Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold

Chipotle-Honey Goat Cheese and Almond Butterflies made with ZANDA PANDA’s Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold. Teacup and saucer courtesy RiRi’s Pottery Haus

This couldn’t be simpler.  Mix the Chipotle-Honey Goat Cheese with ground nuts and make butterflies.  Chill and pop on a cracker.

I love the earthy, ‘all natural’ look the little specks of ground nuts gave the butterflies.  I made them with both walnuts and almonds.  I preferred almonds, the color was richer and I think the flavor complimented the smokey, spicy cheese better as well.  Figs or grapes would be lovely served alongside the butterflies.

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Grind your favorite nuts in a food processor.

Grind your favorite nuts in a food processor, then mix with your favorite goat cheese.

Molding Cheesy, Nutty Butterflies in ZANDA PANDA's Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold

Making Cheesy, Nutty Butterflies.  Put them in the freezer for a bit so they’ll pop out of the mold.

Press the mixture into the the butterfly shapes of a Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold.  After you’ve molded your butterflies, put them in the freezer for a bit so they’ll pop out of the mold.  I put these on round Breton Mini crackers; they’re small, so you see mostly butterfly.  Pepperridge Farms make a butterfly shaped cracker that looks very cute with these, too.
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Chipotle-Honey Goat Cheese and Almond Butterflies made with ZANDA PANDA’s Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold

Chipotle-Honey Goat Cheese and Almond Butterflies made with ZANDA PANDA’s Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold. Teacup and saucer courtesy RiRi’s Pottery Haus

More ideas for spring:  A Butterfly Tea Party, using the ZP Kaleidoscope Butterfly Mold.

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Oh yes, and apple blossoms!

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Apple Blossoms 5-5-13

Enjoy your spring!

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Goodbye Year of the Dragon (Part 2) Chantilly Dragons! These Dragons may look tough, but they’re Creampuffs.


CHANTILLY DRAGONS!

Goodbye Year of the Dragon – Hello GOT (Part 2)

These Dragons may look tough, but they’re Cream Puffs.

Chantilly Dragon

Chantilly Dragon

I usually post about ways to use ZANDA PANDA molds, but I just had to share this (sorry it’s a bit late for the Chinese New Year – I blame Blizzard Nemo 😉 ).

I was smitten by an image of Chantilly Swans on Baking 101‘s Facebook page.  It was posted by Wendy Gail from her Cinnamon Sweet Shoppe blog.

— And of course I immediately thought of dragons.

Her recipe, originally from Princess Cruise Lines, works very well, although next time I might add a bit of sugar to the choux pastry to sweeten the dragons up a bit.  She has excellent instructions, so rather than repeat her recipe here, you can get it directly from Wendy’s blog and pop back if you want to make dragons.

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How to Pipe your Dragon 

If you don’t already have them, I recommend picking up some tips (small round and medium star) and pastry bags , but you could use a zip lock bag with a corner snipped if you had to.  I piped and baked them on parchment/baking paper.

Piping Dragons

Piping Dragons

I used a small round tip to make the ‘S’ shape as in Wendy’s instructions, but continued and added a looping tail.  I switched to a smaller round tip and added nostrils, a brow ridge and eyes, ears and then scales down the spine and tail.  I’m not the best at piping designs, but the batter is very forgiving and you can blend/smooth the shapes easily.

Dragon Bodies

Dragon Bodies

Just remember, when piping, you’re not ‘drawing’ it onto the paper, you’re holding the tip just above the paper, guiding the line and letting it drop onto the paper in a flowing motion.  Just practice a little and you’ll get it.

To make the wings, I made the outline first, added ‘ribs’, then filled in between them in a zig-zag fashion.  I then went over the ribs again and added claws at the tips. Don’t forget to extend the front of the wing a little, to press into the whipped cream.

Dragon Wings - Don't forget to extend the front to anchor it into the whipped cream.

Dragon Wings

For the bodies, instead of a mound (for making swans), I started by coiling the batter for a base.  Then I built up the sides to make a basket shape, with each layer just a bit wider than the one beneath it.

Bake the heads and tails for about 5 minutes at 400°F.   Reduce heat to 350°F  and bake the bodies for an additional 5 minutes.

While the dragons are cooling, make the whipped cream.  Using a star tip, pipe the whipped cream into the bodies.  You can coil it or pipe it into little puffs (my favorite).  You can also add fillings under or on top of the whipped cream, like berries, Nutella, chocolate, etc.

Dragon Construction -Body

Dragon Construction -Body

Gently place the head and tail pieces into the whipped cream (if you’ve misjudged the length of the body, just break them into two separate pieces).  You can add more whipped cream after placing them if needed.

Dragon construction - Head, Tail & Wings

Dragon construction – Head, Tail & Wings

You should serve these soon after assembling them, especially if you made them large, as the whipped cream softens the pieces.  They could begin to get droopy and sag a bit, making them look a little less majestic :).  Or you could make them with their wings spread and not worry about it.

You could also make them like this.  Quite majestic - and less concern for drooping.

Or make them like this (But add more whipped cream to the top after assembling).

If you smush the whipped cream like this when assembling it, just add more rosettes on top of it.

Smushed Cream - If your whipped cream smooshs a bit when constructing your dragon, just add more rosettes to it.  The poufy-ier the better! :)

Smushed Cream

And for all of you GOT fans – as mentioned in the last post on Heather’s Khaleesi’s Dragon Cookies, these would be great for a Game of  Thrones season premiere party next month!

If you make these, please feel free to share your pics on the ZANDA PANDA Facebook page!

Sandy

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Hearts & Talons – New Valentine Design – ‘Hurts So Good’ Stoneware Cookie Mold

Hearts & Talons – New Valentine Design

Hurts So Good‘ Stoneware Cookie Mold

'Hurts So Good'- Hearts & Talons Valentine's Day Cookie Mold from ZANDA PANDA

‘Hurts So Good’- Hearts & Talons Valentine’s Day Cookie Mold from ZANDA PANDA

You know the song, this mold needs no explanation 🙂   It’s a brand new design which will be shipping in late January.  It joins my other five Valentine’s Day heart shaped cookie mold designs below. 

The cookie above had a light orange flavor, I spread a thick layer of dark Ghiradelli chocolate on the back.  It was a delicious combination that reminded me a little of Pepperidge Farms’ Milano Cookies.  I’ll post the recipe soon.

You can find more info on the new design in my Etsy shop.

 

For more info on the five Valentine Heart Molds below, please visit the ZANDA PANDA website.

 

MORE VALENTINE’S DAY COOKIE DESIGNS

Ruffled Heart Traditional Heart Hearts Afire Ying/Yang Hearts Love at First SightHeartSep
For the hopeless romantic in you.
2.5″ high
No frills, true-blue traditional heart.
2.25″ high
Who sets your heart afire?
Tell them so.
2.5″ high
Is your sweetie Yin to your Yang?
Then you already know opposites attract!
3.5″ wide
When love hits you like a lightning bolt!
3.75″ wide


Which Valentine are you?

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BTW, if you’re on my mailing list, watch for an e-mail by early February!


Or if you’d like to join my Mailing List, please visit:
https://zandapanda.com/mailinglist.asp
(it’s free, I will never share your info and you can unsubscribe at any time).

Cookies for Santa? Don’t Forget the Reindeer!

Reindeer Cookies!

Holiday Reindeer Cookies made with ZANDA PANDA's Handmade Stoneware Reindeer Cookie Mold

Holiday Reindeer Cookies with ZANDA PANDA’s Handmade Stoneware Reindeer Cookie Mold

Reindeer like cookies, too!  And they’ll love my new design.  Be sure to put out a plate for them next to Santa’s – they work hard on Christmas Eve.  And don’t forget the milk!

Each food-safe stoneware ceramic cookie mold is made by hand in my studio in Connecticut and high fired twice.  Check them out in my Etsy shop!


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Here’s a recipe for Xmas Spice Cookies, developed especially for molded cookies- which means that they won’t flatten out during baking and will keep the design details.

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XMAS SPICE COOKIES

1 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 Tbsp milk
1/2 cup honey (or substitute maple or agave syrup)
2 tsp vanilla

4 cups flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cardamom
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp clove
(Make it YOUR recipe – you can add other spices, like ginger or nutmeg, depending on your taste – or omit any that you dislike)

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Cream butter and sugar, add egg, then milk, honey and vanilla.

In a separate bowl, whisk together 3 cups of the flour with salt, and dry spices.

Add wet ingredients to the bowl of  dry ingredients.  Mix gently.

Add the last cup of  flour until dough is soft and sticky, add more or less flour as needed.

Chill dough for at least an hour.

After molding, bake at 350° for 9 to 15 minutes, depending on thickness of cookies.

I recommend drizzling the back of the cookies with melted white chocolate.  You can also sprinkle on red and green sugar before the chocolate cools.

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Using Your Cookie Mold:

You’ll need

Chilled cookie dough
A thoroughly dry Reindeer Cookie Mold
Extra flour in a small bowl
DRY pastry brush
Cookie sheet covered with a sheet of parchment paper
An oven 😉

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Roll a ball of chilled dough, then flatten slightly into a disc that is slightly smaller than the inside diameter of the mold. 

Pat flour lightly onto the dough disc , using the side of the pastry brush.  You’re looking for a ‘frosted’ look, not ‘floury’.  You might want to dust the back a bit, too, so the dough won’t stick to you fingers. 

Press the disc into the center of the mold.  Using your fingers, press dough into the mold from the center outwards to the edges, in a circular pattern. 

Turn mold over and, holding it securely with both hands, give it a shake and the dough with drop into your bottom hand.  If your cookie is very thin, you may need to peel it from the mold a bit before it drops out.

Place cookies on a parchment covered cookie sheet and bake at 350° for 9 to 15 minutes, depending on thickness of cookies.

See a video using this method at:
http://zandapanda.com/HalloweenStonewareCookieMolds.asp#hmvid
The molds used are Halloween designs, but the technique is the same.
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Have a Happy, Healthy Holiday!

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Halloween Bat Cookie Mold – Or Luke Skywalker’s House?

Halloween Bat Cookie Mold - Or Luke Skywalker's House?

Halloween Bat Cookie Mold – Or Luke Skywalker’s House?

While this does bear a striking resemblance to Luke Skywalker’s house on Tatooine (OK, the Lars’ Homestead for all you hardcore Star Wars Fans), it is indeed a mold for my Halloween Bat Stoneware Cookie Molds.  Actually one step in the process of making  a production mold.  Technically it’s a Cookie Mold Mold…but that would sound silly.

It will be this:

Halloween Bat - Handmade Stoneware Cookie Mold from ZANDA PANDA

Halloween Bat – Handmade Stoneware Cookie Mold from ZANDA PANDA

But it’s not this:

Luke Skywalker's House on Tatooine - Not a cookie mold

Luke Skywalker’s House on Tatooine…Not a cookie mold

Once more…

cookie mold                                                                  not a cookie mold

If you’d like to see more of the Halloween Cookie Molds, check out the tutorial, video and recipes at: http://zandapanda.com/HalloweenStonewareCookieMolds.asp

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Valentine Video hits 10,000 views! Help me Celebrate!

10,000 Views

For my Valentine’s Chocolate Cake-Topper Video!

Scroll down for a COUPON, so you can celebrate, too!
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I was hoping my Valentine’s Heart Cake Topper video would hit 10,000 views by Valentine’s Day… It was at exactly 9,999 views at midnight on Valentine’s Day.  The stats were mocking me. 

But at some time in the wee hours of February 15th, it popped up to 10,000.  Still worth celebrating, I think.
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So.  I thought.  How to celebrate this?  And in a way that you’d like, too?

OK, It’s the fifteenth.  How about 15% off of anything in my Etsy shop?
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15% Off ANYTHING in the ZANDA PANDA Etsy Shop!  Really Neat Handmade Stuff!

15% Off ANYTHING in the ZANDA PANDA Etsy Shop! Really Neat Handmade Stuff!

Just paste this code in at checkout for
15% off ANYTHING in my Etsy Shop!

15VID22012  

(Coupon can only be used at the ZANDA PANDA Etsy Shop).
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Just remember that this is all the handmade stuff, so if it’s not in stock, I’ll have to make it for you. 

If I can’t ship it to you within two days, I will let you know immediately.  Also let me know if it’s needed by a specific date (for a present, etc.) and I’ll do my best to rush your order.

If you have any questions on any of the items, please don’t hesitate to shoot me a line at Lira@zandapanda.com

And check back soon to see my goofy little Robot Cookie Molds and an exotic handmade tile or two 🙂

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