Friday, October 22, 2010

Well it is Fall decorating time at my house again. I will really miss the summer, but it is fun to bake and get all those delicious smells in your house again.

We've been making Maple Leaf Sugar Cookies and Waxed leaves for fall decorating as well as for a Fiber Artist Show I'l be attending in a few weeks.

The waxed leaves are a fun way to bring a little bit of the outdoors into your home for the season. I use beeswax that I buy from a local honey producer. But you can substitute pariffin wax (found in the canning section of your grocery store), or even a scented soy candle but a soy candle will be scented and a bit shiny.

It's super simple to do:
You'll need:
Dried leaves with stems
Wax paper
gloves (optional)
beeswax or paraffin (I use about 8 oz)
old double boiler

Gather some dried leaves that are pretty shades of browns, reds and oranges. Make sure you leave the stem on as that is how you will hold it while dipping in the wax. Using a double boiler, put water in the bottom pan and the wax in the top pan. Slowly melt the wax over a medium flame. When completely melted hold the leaf by the stem and just dip the leaf into the hot wax. I line a plate with wax paper before hand so I don't have wax residue on the plate. It takes only seconds to dry and they seem to last forever. Fun project, just make sure you stay safe by using gloves and not leaving the wax on the burner too long. My sister uses an old crock pot she found at a garage sale to melt her wax, and simply leaves the wax in the pot until she needs to use it again.

Maple leaf cookies are another great item you can make to bring a little festivity into your home. I found some cookie cutters at a local Joann fabric store but you can also buy them online at sugarcraft (see link)

Maple Leaf Sugar Cookies
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 pound soft butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon maple extract
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg

In bowl, sift together flour, cream of tartar, and salt. Using mixer, cream butter in another bowl, and then add vanilla and maple extracts. Beat until light and fluffy. Gradually add sugar; beat until well mixed. Add 1 egg; mix well. Slowly add dry ingredients. Form into a ball. Wrap and chill 1 hour. Before rolling out, dust dough and surface with flour. Roll out to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out with maple leaf cookie cutter (or any shape). Can reroll scraps. Bake on a non-stick pan at 350 degrees for 5 to 7 minutes. Enjoy!

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