Posts Tagged ‘tutorial’

Texas Toast Challah & How to Make a 6 Strand Braided Bread {video}

Challah bread is a braided egg bread and a traditional part of Jewish meals on the Sabbath and holidays. Depending on where you live, challah bread is also very commonly found in grocery stores and bakeries, because it has this slightly sweet yet savory flavor and a dreamy texture making it perfect for eating alone, or using for everything from sandwiches to French toast. In fact, my first blog post ever was for a pumpkin challah bread pudding. 🙂

Texas Toast Challah Recipe

I started making challah bread about five or six years ago after an experience at a nicer grocery store in Georgia. We wanted bread to make French toast that weekend and sandwiches, but when I went to ask, the attendant at the bakery told me they would have to go thaw some from the freezer. We had shopping to do, so I agreed, although I did find it a little odd that it wasn’t baked fresh on site. When we got the bread home, it was dry, and not as good as we were hoping for. It was fine for French toast, but not the consistency and flavor we had come to know growing up in an area where fresh baked was always readily available.

I decided to look for a recipe and start baking my own in the hopes that we could always have access to delicious challah bread whenever we wanted. To date, it is the bread I make most frequently in our home. I like to play with variations from time to time, and the reigning favorite is roasted garlic. To make this Texas Toast variation, I swapped some of the traditional olive oil for melted butter.

Challah bread recipe with flavors inspired by Texas toast! The blog post also has a video showing you how to make a 6 strand braid.

While this isn’t a variation I’d use for sweet recipes, it’s amazing for sandwiches, topped with additional butter and garlic for garlic bread, or as toast topped with a drizzle of olive oil, butter, or even mashed avocado. The garlic flavor is very subtle, especially if you only use one head of garlic.

My biggest pet peeve with challah comes with the braiding. I feel like challah loaves should always be hand braided. The only exception would be if you’re making a gluten free challah and then the dough has to be poured into a mold pan. You can definitely tell a molded bread from a hand-braided bread in the way it pulls when you bite it. It’s hard to explain, but once you make this and try it, you’ll see what I mean.

Personally, I had a lot of trouble following written instructions for a six strand braid when I started baking challah and it took me some trial and error practice to find the pattern to make the perfect braid every time. In case you’re like me, and learn better by watching, I’ve taped a video for you to follow along showing how to braid challah with 6 strands.

This recipe makes one big loaf (just over 2 lbs), or two smaller loaves (about 1 lb each). If you choose to make the smaller loaves and want to save one for later, freeze the dough just after braiding and before the second rise. Wrap it very well once it’s frozen. When you’re ready to bake, thaw in the refrigerator overnight, and then set on the counter 2 hours to bring to room temperature and complete the second rise.

Texas Toast Challah & How to Make a 6 Strand Braided Bread {video}
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Bread
For Roasted Garlic
  • 1-2 whole heads garlic (see note)
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
For Bread Dough
  • 2 tsp dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 tsp + ¼ c sugar
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 eggs - 2 for dough, 1 for brushing
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 4-4½ cups unbleached all-purpose or bread flour
  • dried parsley to top (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Cut the tops off the garlic heads so the cloves are just exposed and rub with olive oil. Place in a cupcake tin or on a baking sheet, cut side down, and cover with aluminum foil.
  3. Roast 25-30 minutes until very soft and golden.
  4. Allow to cool 15 minutes or so until cool enough to handle and then squeeze the cloves out of the paper. They should slide out easily.
  5. Mash with a fork and set aside.
  6. In a large bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer), combine the yeast, 1 tsp sugar, and warm water. Allow to sit 10 minutes until bubbly.
  7. Stir in the remaining sugar, butter, salt, and olive oil. Then add the two eggs, one at a time.
  8. Stir in the first cup of flour, then stir in the garlic paste. Add the second cup of flour, mix again, then add the third. If doing this by hand, the dough should be firm enough to use your hands to knead at this point. If your bowl is large enough, do this right in the bowl, if not, turn dough onto a clean, lightly floured surface to knead in the last cup. If doing this in a stand mixer, switch from the paddle attachment to the dough hook.
  9. Add the fourth cup of flour and knead into the dough. If the dough is still sticky, add additional flour 1 tbsp at a time. If the dough is dry, add water 1 tsp at a time. You are looking for a dough that is still a bit "wet" but not sticky. If kneading with a stand mixer, you will see the dough pull away cleanly from the sides of the bowl. If kneading by hand, the dough will not stick to the work surface, but won't have clumps of flour stuck to it either.
  10. Knead the dough for 5-7 minutes by machine until smooth or 8-10 minutes by hand until it passes the "windowpane test". You should be able to pull a small portion of the dough thin enough to see light through it without it breaking.
  11. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover with a clean damp dishcloth or plastic wrap, and allow to rise in a warm place for one hour. I usually just clean out my mixing bowl and brush it with additional olive oil.
  12. Press down the dough to deflate, cover, and allow to rise an additional 20-30 minutes until doubled in size.
  13. Gently press down the dough again and transfer it to a clean surface for braiding. A video demonstration of how to do a 6 strand braid is included in the post on my blog.
  14. Place the loaf on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Beat the third egg with 1 tsp water and brush a coat of egg wash on the braided loaf. Cover the loaf loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rise an additional hour.
  15. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat your oven to 350. Brush the bread with a second coat of the egg wash and top with parsley if desired.
  16. Bake for 30-35 minutes until the loaf is a rich golden brown and the bottom sounds hollow when tapped. Allow to completely cool on a rack before slicing.
Use 1 head of garlic for a subtle garlic taste, 2 for a slightly stronger flavor. Either is still mild enough not to be overpowering.



Fondant Cinderella Shoe Tutorial

How to make a Cinderella shoe cake topper out of fondant. Blog post contains a video tutorial and helpful tips and tricks!

Give a girl the right pair of shoes and she can make her dreams come true! While not all of us may have dreams of running away from home to marry Prince Charming, I do believe in the power of a good pair of shoes.

As you must have heard by now, the much-anticipated live action Cinderella movie is being released this Friday. I’m sure we will watch the movie at some point, but I’m a classic girl myself and the animated version will always win out. It was the first movie that taught me the importance of outsourcing the housecleaning to helpful birds. When you find some, please give them my address. 😉

How to make a Cinderella shoe cake topper out of fondant. Blog post contains a video tutorial and helpful tips and tricks!

I  decided to make this cake, just because I felt like it, and also because I’ve decided I really want to improve my cake decorating skills. My goal is to be ready to test for my Sugar Artist Certification within the next 10 years. That seems like a long time, but it’s a very intense test and I am training for this part time. I also want this to be a fun process because I love making beautiful food! I’ve also decided to take you along for the journey, so expect to see a few more tutorials on the blog so we can all learn together. The next one I plan to film is for the leopard and zebra print quilted cookies I designed and posted on Craftsy. Sweet Ambs then featured my design on her Facebook page, which I thought was pretty cool.

Leopard and Zebra Print Quilted Cookies - An original design by Goodie Godmother

But back to the cake. I’ve always wanted to make a pillow cake, especially one of the really cool looking cakes with multiple tiers, but after seeing a trailer for the movie, I thought it would be best to start with a single pillow, and practice my fondant modeling by making a shoe! I went through so many tutorials and even cut out a pattern trying to fit the shoe together, but I really didn’t love how it turned out. I made a decent enough fashion shoe, but Cinderella’s shoe was a single piece of glass and that just didn’t translate for me making the shoe via traditional methods. I wanted a softer look and wasn’t really finding a guide to help me. So I just started experimenting and made the shoe on the cake. In making that shoe, I learned a few things, so I filmed a video to document the process of making another shoe and I’m sharing that with you today. Hopefully what I learned will help you!

Fondant Cinderella Shoe Tutorial

A few quick notes about making the shoe that I think it’s important to highlight:

  • It’s good to plan ahead! The shoe will need at least 24-48 hours to dry. If you need a faster dry time, mix in gumpaste. Gumpaste dries very quickly, and I found that the heart topped shoe (1/4 gumpaste, 3/4 fondant) dried faster than the butterfly topped shoe, which I made with just fondant.
  • Some people eat fondant, so if you think there’s a chance someone will try to eat the shoe decoration, skip the disco dust and use something edible like silver luster dust instead. Disco dust is for decoration only.
  • I think this could also work beautifully with modeling chocolate and I may try that next time. You don’t spackle the modeling chocolate with gunge, you’ll just need to take the extra time to smooth everything out very well. Modeling chocolate still requires drying time, but not as much as fondant in my experience. This is good if you haven’t planned ahead. 😉
  • The paintbrushes I use are from the painting section of the craft store, but they are only used for food! Please don’t mix your craft and food brushes.
  • Have fun!

Should you like to know which materials I used, I’ve included a list below the video. Some of them are affiliate links, which means that should you make a purchase, Goodie Godmother will receive a tiny commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for helping me continue to share my joy with you until pixie dust and baked goods are accepted as official currency. 😉

Enjoy the video and don’t forget to subscribe to my e-mail list so you don’t miss any delicious recipes or tutorials!

I used the following items to make the shoe. The first five items are clickable links:


See this post and other great ideas on the following sites:

Talented Tuesday Link Party hosted by Cook.Craft.Love.

Momma Told Me Link Party hosted by The Evolution of Mom

{Video} Christmas Leg Lamp Cookie Decorating Tutorial and Eggnog Sugar Cookie Recipe

As I was looking through my cutter collection a month or so ago, which grows rather frequently, I realized my Christmas assortment was rather small. In my defense, my cutters are used for fondant too, so they serve dual purpose, and I haven’t made any Christmas-themed cakes in which I needed anything other than what I had. So, with the Godfather’s blessing I started hunting around for some new toys to add and I found… The Leg Lamp.

Eggnog Sugar Cookie Recipe

To be honest, I haven’t seen the movie in its entirety, although my Dad and the Godfather both like it. I’m scared of possible violence from the BB gun? There is a BB gun right? Anyway, I’m going to try and watch it this year, promise. I may even get motivated to make another batch of these cookies just for the movie viewing… probably not. Sugar cookies are far from my favorite dessert. I enjoy making them because they help me practice my fine piping techniques for cake decorating, they ship well, and look cute, and my recipe is fan-tastic, but most others taste like sweet play-dough. When I chose to offer them at the bakery, I spent a long time perfecting my recipe so the dough actually tastes good and has a crumb I like. And no, I’m not ready to share it, so this is still not it. :-p

Leg lamp sugar cookie cutouts

But it is a fantastic eggnog-inspired recipe you should totally make this year! It tastes great on its own, but it also holds its shape perfectly to make a good base for your preferred decorating frosting.

Leg Lamp Cookie Decorating Tutorial by Goodie Godmother

I had a question about the frosting recipe I use for making my decorated cookies. I really like, and have always used, the Sweetopia recipe for royal icing. Want to know why? I liked the illustrations. And it makes the perfect amount for a few dozen cookies, just right when I’m making a few batches. So I’m going to send you over there to see the pretty illustrations too. She’s a phenomenal cookie decorator and her website has loads of inspiration and tutorials, so it’s definitely worth bookmarking, I always learn something new.  I do make one bitsy modification though and I add a little more flavoring. Meringue powder is blegh, so you need to flavor it with something. A clear flavoring is great – I’ve used lemon, almond, and coffee to add a light compliment to the cookie depending on dough flavor. Real vanilla extract only comes in color though, and that is my default, so when I use that, I add white gel coloring to bring me back to a nice white base.

If you don’t plan to make several dozen cookies and want a frosting recipe for a smaller quantity, I have one in my Halloween cookie tutorial. 😉 With either recipe you will get a nice hard frosting that will be completely dry in 6-8 hours so you can stack, ship, and share. Meringue powder can be found at craft stores and some grocery stores. I haven’t found a significant difference in flavor or function between brands, so whatever you find is good.

Eggnog Cookie Recipe and Tutorial

I do hope you’ll enjoy the tutorial! You’ll see in the video that I am using two different types of containers for my icing. I have two colors in my usual piping bags, and one color in a bottle. As part of The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap, I received a promotional gift from OXO, a set of two decorating bottles. I had tried bottles for decorating once before and I wasn’t happy with them, so I was hesitant when I saw these, but having several OXO brand items in my kitchen (including my new ridiculously efficient grater that I purchased), I decided to give them a try. I’m impressed. I didn’t really like the small decorating tip they had, so I used one of my own and it worked nicely with the bottle. My frosting didn’t dry out and I had no issues with flow, and the bottle is small enough that I can control it easily with my small hands. So I like them, and may pick up a few more since they’re reusable and flip inside out for really easy and thorough cleaning – which was one of my BIG issues with bottles before.

Here’s a link to the video, with the recipe for the eggnog sugar cookie dough below. If you have any questions, comment below, find me on Facebook, or send me an e-mail! I hope you enjoy the tutorial and recipe. Happy holiday baking! 🙂

Eggnog Sugar Cookies
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Combining two traditional holiday treats into one sweet eat! 😉
Recipe type: Cookie
Serves: about 18 cookies
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 egg yolks
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar, unpacked
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 2¼ c all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Cream together the butter and sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer until just combined.
  2. Add the egg yolks and vanilla extract and mix. Scrape the sides of the bowl.
  3. In another bowl, mix together the salt, baking powder, nutmeg, and flour.
  4. Add the flour mixture in 3 batches to the butter and mix just until all the flour has been incorporated.
  5. Split the dough in two and roll each section to ¼" thick between two sheets of plastic wrap. Refrigerate 30 minutes.
  6. Preheat your oven to 400F. Remove the cookie dough sheets one at a time from the refrigerator. Cut out your shapes and lay them on ungreased parchment paper lined baking sheets. Re-roll and refrigerate any remaining cookie dough.
  7. Bake for 8-10 minutes until the edges are a very light golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to set on the sheet for 5-10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies must be completely cool before decorating.


Pumpkin Sugar Cookie Dough & a “Frankenstein” Inspired Decorating Tutorial {Video}

So the other day, I was bored procrastinating, and I decided to google pumpkin sugar cookies. I found dozens upon dozens of pumpkin shaped sugar cookies, and a handful of pumpkin spice cookies with assorted frostings, but not a pumpkin sugar cookie you could cut to hold its shape.

pumpkin sugar cookie dough

I was surprised too.

rolled pumpkin sugar cookie dough

So I decided to fix that, and tweak my own sugar cookie recipe beyond recognition so it couldn’t be reverse-engineered to get *that* recipe (the one I used for my bakery sugar cookies, sorry not sorry 😉 ) and create a pumpkin sugar cookie dough. These hold their shape beautifully, and best of all, they have real pumpkin in them, so real pumpkin flavor – hooray! And really, how cute would it be to have a tray of pumpkin-shaped pumpkin cookies as a Halloween or fall treat?

halloween pumpkin sugar cookie shapes

But I couldn’t stop at just pumpkins, so I made a few other shapes, mixed a few colors of frosting, and started doodling and playing with a few ideas until these adorable little creations came to life. Aren’t they darling?

Decorated pumpkin sugar cookie tutorial

royal icing decorations on pumpkin sugar cookies

decorated pumpkin sugar cookies

And of course, we have a tutorial! In video, please pardon my awful editing skills! (recipe below video)

Pumpkin Sugar Cookie Recipe and Video Tutorial on Goodie Godmother

Pumpkin Sugar Cookie Dough & a "Frankenstein" Inspired Decorating Tutorial {Video}
Pumpkin sugar cookie dough perfect for cutting shapes and decorating with your favorite frosting!
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
  • 4 oz unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 oz pumpkin puree
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ¾ c powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Sift together the dry ingredients.
  2. Cream the butter until light and fluffy. Stir in the sugar and pumpkin.
  3. Add the egg, scraping down the sides after stirring.
  4. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients until just combined.
  5. Roll out the cookie dough to desired thickness between two sheets of plastic wrap or parchment paper. Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to chill.
  6. When you are ready to cut and bake the cookies, preheat your oven to 400 F.
  7. Remove the cookie dough from the refrigerator and cut out desired shapes. It's best to cut shapes as close to each other as possible because you will need to chill the re-rolled dough again before cutting.
  8. Place the cookies on ungreased parchment paper baking sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes or until the bottom edges are slightly golden and cookies are baked through.
  9. Allow to cool completely before frosting.


Make pumpkin flavored sugar cookies that hold their shape with this pumpkin sugar cookie dough recipe! Video included demonstrating a Frankenstein-inspired royal icing decorating tutorial. These would also be cute for Thanksgiving cookies! * Recipe on

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