Out of this World
Photo Courtesy of Katherine O’Brien
Perhaps not so much out of this world as of this world, using geode’s is one way to rock your table décor. Seen here, this vibrant agate slice is under a dome filled with twinkling lights, giving it an otherworldly statement piece that will get your guest’s talking.
The Big Dipper
These stunning shapes are cookies topped with a marble fondant and drawn to their star studded constellation likeness. Any cookie cutter shapes will work, but we like the astronomical representations seen here.
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (225g) granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups (255g) all-purpose flour
1 cup (225g) black cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
1 lb. marbled vanilla fondant (per blog post directions)
Water, corn syrup or honey
Bright white liquid food color
Clear vanilla extract or vodka
Fine tipped art brush
Stiff bristle brushIn an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter and sugar together until just incorporated. Do not over-mix at this stage, or the cookies may spread while baking.
Add the egg and vanilla extract. Mix again on low speed, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl intermittently as needed.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa and salt. Add to the butter and egg mixture. Mix on low speed until a dough is formed and there are no longer any streaks of butter in the mixing bowl. The dough will often clump around the paddle attachment while being mixed. This is normal and a good sign that your dough is the right consistency. If your mixture does not come together and is crumbly, add ice cold water 1 tbsp. at a time until the dough clumps. Roll the dough flat between sheets of parchment paper and chill until ready for use, at least 30 minutes.Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Use animal-shaped cookie cutters to stamp shapes from the dough and transfer them to the prepared pans. Bake cookies for 12-15 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly brown on the edges. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
Roll half of the marbled fondant between two sheets of parchment or waxed paper. Use the same cookie cutters to cut shapes from the fondant. Lightly dab water or corn syrup on the cookies using a small art bush and lay the fondant on top of the matching shaped cookie. Repeat the process with the second half of the fondant.
Place a nickel-sized amount of white food color onto a shallow plate. Dip the fine-tipped art brush into the food color and paint constellation patterns onto the cookies; allow to dry 5 minutes. (If you have trouble drawing straight lines, use the edge of a piece of paper as a guide. Be sure to wipe the paper edge clean with a napkin each time before placing it back down on the fondant to avoid smearing.)
Place a dime-sized amount of white food color onto a shallow plate. Add a small drop of clear extract or vodka to the color and mix until slightly thinned. Dip the stiff bristle brush into the color and bend the bristles back with a finger. Hold the brush bristles 6-8 inches away from the cookie surfaces and release the bristles so that paint flecks the surfaces of the cookies. Hold the brush closer to the cookies for spatters that look like star clusters.
Allow the cookies to stand until dry, about 1-2 hours.
Photo Courtesy of Elle Heath
A drink as dark as the evening sky is not something you see every night. Using black vodka, such as Blavod gives this drink its air of mystery.
- 2 ounces Black Vodka
- 1 ounces Cherry Juice
- 0.5 ounce Orange Juice
- 0.5 ounce Maraschino Cherry Juice
- Pinch Wilton Pearl Dust
Shooting Star Dramatic Drones
Photo Courtesy of Fox
For a spectacular starry night finish, create your own constellations with programmable drones. If you didn’t see the Super Bowl Halftime show, Intel flew 300 Shooting Star drones that were choregraphed to fly and create colorful scenes. With the LED lighting choices and colors, the possibilities are as limitless as the sky.