Clueless baking noob needs help please!

Dancing Trek
Posted on 06/15/2011 by 13oct
Hi! I'm a baking novice who's kinda stuck for answers. I'm trying to make Spiderman cookies for my kid and brilliantly decided to cover sugar cookies with a layer of colored marzipan and then ice that when it dries. I call this my mad scientist last minute baking. *headdesk*

I haven't got the right red color on my marzipan yet, and I've already adhered that on to the cookies with jam. The color that I am using is Wilton's No-Taste Red. Can I dip the tip of a toothpick into the colour jar and just use my finger to spread more color on the marzipan? Will that be safe/ok for the kids? Instead of Spiderman red, all I've got so far is more pinkish ovals! Help - I'm so lost at stuff like this!!

Also - is there an easier way of doing this?!! Because struggling with marzipan and then coloring it and then sticking it to the cookies with jam is a pretty labor intensive way of doing things.

Thank you in advance for any sort of recommendations and advice!
absolutelyfatal 16th-Jun-2011 12:57 am (UTC)
doubletake 16th-Jun-2011 01:34 am (UTC)
I have painted milk mixed with food color on unbaked cookies, then baked them for a sort of colored exterior that's flat. Sometimes it cracks a bit during baking. Also, do not expect to be able to do any sort of detail with this technique, especially if you have cookies that puff/expand during baking.

It sounds like you're in the midst of making the cookies, so I don't know if that will be much help. To answer your question, yes, you can paint straight food color onto food and have it be safe. Be warned, though: with that much coloring you're liable to have dyed lips/face/hands/clothes/walls/tablecloth/towels/whatever it touches...pink, not red, so at least it won't look like a murder took place, but it doesn't wash out of everything and I know for a fact that it can be quite difficult to get out of old formica countertops, so just be careful. Comet with Bleach works best, or Barman's Friend.

Personally, I would pull the marzipan off the cookies and reknead it with more food coloring. You'll use less than you would if you'd painted it on, and there's less of a staining hazard.
doubletake 16th-Jun-2011 01:40 am (UTC)
For future reference, other easier ways to get a Spiderman-red cookie that I can think of would be:
Royal icing or American-style buttercream frosting or even fondant will take dye better; even the finest ground marzipan still has bits of almond in it that will stay whitish.
Dye your cookie dough before you bake it. You may want to put a bit of dough aside to bake alongside the colored cookies, as a better gauge of doneness: red dough makes assessing 'golden brown' a little tricky. Make sure your 'indicator cookie' is the same size/thickness as your other cookies so it's more accurate.
Make a red glaze and dip the cookies in it.
Tell your kids that Spiderman is lame and introduce them to the Pink Power Ranger. :D
moldypotatochip 16th-Jun-2011 08:39 am (UTC)
Sorry I can't advise you about the Spiderman cookies (sounds awesome, though). I just wanted to say that your icon is amazing!!
ashura_oh 16th-Jun-2011 01:35 pm (UTC)
I usually use icing made of powdered sugar with a little lemon juice (great lemon taste, but you can also use other juice or water). If you want the colour to be intense, dip the biscuits into white icing, let it dry (that may take quite some time, so better mack thick icing and try to apply only a thin layer). Then dye more icing shock red and paint the cookies to your liking. The undyed layer underneath will make the colour appear more true.
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