Friday, December 31, 2010

Product Review: Trader Joe's Sugar Cookie Workshop

I stopped at Trader Joe's in search of macadamia nuts and came out with this Sugar Cookie Workshop--for 99 cents! I bought the Sugar Cookie Workshop because it was such a ridiculously good deal. By that time, I had already baked my socks off but I figured I'd have a chance to do these before the new year.

And I did that in the nick of time! This workshop really is a good deal. For 99 cents, I got sugar cookie mix, 3 cookie cutters, 2 packets of vanilla frosting and 4 different colors of sanding sugar. If you wanted to buy all these things separately, it would be well over $10. The mix for me yielded about 60 cookies. The cookies are delicious, but I still have some tips for you if you get this mix in the future.

1. There was not enough frosting for the amount of cookies the mix yielded. Don't fret. There are several ways to make your baking experience a success if you know ahead that there will not be enough frosting. There is plenty of sanding sugar, even if your kids have a heavy hand with sugar. I only had enough frosting for about 40 cookies. So, before you bake the remaining 20 cookies, make a little egg wash (beat one egg in a small bowl), and brush it onto the unbaked cookies. Then sprinkle some of the sanding sugar onto the egg washed cookies and bake as normal. These cookies are great for people watching their weight because it doesn't have the added frosting.

2. The frosting works better in the beginning than later, so frost and then decorate. It would be great if you had someone else helping you make your cookies. An assembly line would be great. Have one person squeeze the frosting promptly after the bag is kneaded and cut onto the cookies. Have another person spread the frosting around. If you are thinking you can use this box mix to make something like this, think again. This frosting doesn't work that way. So you can use the cookie mix and cookie cutters--but not the frosting. Use this frosting if you aren't really worried about a finished look but more of an artists take. This mix would be great for young children.

That's it, everything in the mix was great (I love that you can make the cookies with melted butter so you don't have to worry about getting it to room temperature) except the frosting wasn't as great. Lucky for me, I did my share of decorating this Christmas and had some extra frosting lying around so I used that in a pinch. You could also make your own really quickly if you were running low, but again, you'd have to have room temperature butter already on the play it safe and bake a few with sugar and no frosting.

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