Julia M. Usher's Ultimate Cookies Paperback – Oct 15 2011
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About the Author
Julia M. Usher is a celebrated pastry chef and food writer who has designed extraordinary desserts for such magazines as Chocolatier, Better Homes and Gardens, Bon Appetit, and Modern Bride, and such books as Vera Wang on Weddings and For the Love of Food. Usher is a former Contributing Editor at Chocolatier magazine, a James Beard Foundation Journalism Awards finalist, and a Director of the Itnernational Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP). She divides her time between St. Louis, Missouri and Stonington, Maine.
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The numerous photos of the decorated cookies are literally breathtaking!!! The 3D Peacocks are amazing and templates are provided for making these, as well as other 3D cookies. There are a handful of cookie recipes, including Sugar Cookie, Shortbread, Tuiles, "GoofProof" Macarons, Meringues,Gingerbread, etc. There also is a recipe for Royal Icing with detailed instructions on how to achieve the "right" piping consistency. Several other useful recipes are included(chocolate clay, chocolate ganache,Italian Buttercream,etc). The extensive Resource List is helpful for locating decorating necessities.
This is a BEAUTIFUL, informative book. The author REALLY takes Cookie Decorating to the next level!!! She is extremely creative in her decorating. It's worth purchasing this book just for the photos of her beautiful cookies!!! I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys decorating cookies. Her cleaver decorating ideas are very impressive!!!!
Ultimate Cookies goes over, not only the basics of decorating cookies, but all the extra fancy techniques, too. Each recipe has complete instructions and pictures to help you to produce extra special delights. The Party Girl section seemed more like the "royalty" section to me with its ornate cookie jewelry boxes and jewel toned rings, pendants and crowns. Incredible Edibles has show-stopping treats for parties like meringue ice cream cones and cupcakes and adorable tiny tiered cakes. Where the Wild Things Are has ideas like stunning butterflies, cute cookie caterpillars, ladybugs, and more. There's even a gorgeous peacock cookie that can be transformed into a turkey for Thanksgiving!
Of course, there are seasonal favorites for the whole year. I just loved the darling little topiary cookies, perfect for any Spring holidays or get-togethers. And the author uses the classic stained glass cookie effect, popular for Christmas cookies, to make spooky fun spider webs and Jack O'Lanterns for Halloween. I can't wait to make the cookie snow globes, with their beautiful 3D Winter scene! I just loved Ultimate Cookies, its like a complete cookie course in a book!
I love the variety of using royal icing, fondant, wafer paper, stencils templates and the list of ideas goes on and on. This book is for everyone who wants to decorate beautiful cookies. The recipes are perfect, too. I highly recommend Ultimate Cookies. I would give it 10 stars if I could.
Well... I was certainly not disapointed by this book, every single idea contains the perfect number of images so everyone can clearly get the idea on what to do to achieve it.
It is a very well organized book as it contains different signs of the difficulty you are facing while decorating the cookies with each idea, which is quite compelling.
Certainly a keeper!!