Joy, Oh Joy! Springerle Joy!
By Christine Brower of Cookies by Aunt Chris
My first time at CookieCon and I could not have been more excited! For those that might not know what CookieCon is, it’s an inspiring and amazing tradeshow and conference full of cookie artists from all over the globe. I was in all my glory. Finally, in MY element, with MY kind of people. And my first class at the conference was with the lovely ladies of Springerle Joy, and oh what a joy this class was!
I can’t say enough wonderful things about Patrice and Charla. Besides their fantastic personalities, they were both amazing teachers. Our class started off with a bag full of goodies from an apron to dough thickness guides and scrapers and brushes and so much more –everything one could need to make the famous Springerle cookies. Check out my cool swag!
I’d been dying to learn how to make these cookies forever, and I mean forever! I’d been online for years admiring the gorgeous, intricately carved molds in so many beautiful designs, not to mention the Springerle rolling pins. But I have a confession to make–I was SO scared of making them! They seemed so intricate and complicated. Even though I’ve been an art student my whole life, these little 2-3 inch delicacies were scaring me away! I had to conquer my fears (with the help of Patrice and Charla, of course!)
First, we learned how to make the dough and develop the proper consistency as well as roll them out with the cool dough guides. Another first for me – I had been baking for years and never used the guides before.
Next, I learned to use only small portions of dough at a time and cover the rest of the dough in the bowl or it will start to dry out. Very important –when you are ready to use your beautiful Springerle mold you must remember to dust it with flour. Otherwise it will stick and won’t come off easily. Then press firmly, lift up and voila! A vision of cookie loveliness imprinted in your dough! After imprinting, take a cutter slightly larger than your cookie and cut out your shape. Fortunately, Springerle Joy makes it really easy for you. They sell the molds and the matching cutters.
My reaction was: “What, this is it? This was all I had to do?” All these years of being afraid?? I felt empowered with my newfound skills!! It only got more interesting and exciting from here.
I should mention though, after you’ve cut out all your cookies, they need to sit for at least 8 hours and start to dry. As they dry, the imprint becomes more and more visible. It’s so cool. They start to look a little white as they dry, but don’t panic, that’s perfectly normal.
Have a look at before and after several hours:
Once the cookie bakes, you will see it form a little lip (a.k.a. foot) in the back. It’s actually really interesting how it all happens. The magic and chemistry of baking!
Once baked, then the fun began. We got to hand paint the cookies! That was my favorite part of the whole process. We took some food coloring and mixed it with a little Triple Sec to help the color evaporate fast.
We used a set of tiny brushes and began to create. I was totally in my element now. I couldn’t believe how much fun I was having! I wished the class didn’t have to end. I could have stayed there all day painting my cookies. In the photo below, you’ll see my “naked cookie” with no painting, in all its beauty, and then my cool designs of Klaus and frolicking bunnies.
Saying the class was AMAZING is an understatement. I can’t wait to start baking Springerle cookies. I also can’t wait until the next CookieCon to see Patrice and Charla again, and treat myself to more of their absolutely beautiful Springerle molds!
(Christine Brower is the owner of Cookies by Aunt Chris, a cookie design company in Brooklyn, NY. Tel: (917) 667-3207. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cookiesbyauntchris/)