Introduction: Christmas Invaders

Merry Christmas fellow nerds!

   We're going to bake the coolest Christmas cookies the planet has seen with black and white butter pastry, put it together in a special way. I used the invaders from space monsters for inspiration, i found all the little monsters in the eponymous font from dafont.com 

I made this instructable merely to demonstrate you how to make awesome looking cookies than
  to present a specific pastry recipe or teach baking 101. So if you have your own butter pastry recipe feel free to use it if not in step 2 is a simple one.

 it might look awfully difficult, but ones you preped your self right, the stacking is actually pretty easy.

Step 1: Cookie Bluprints

Most important to this (but basicaly every) project is to do some good planning before you begin.

  For not loosing overview when we start building the cookie-bars, we're going to make simple blueprints of our little monsters.

  In figure (a) you see the first monster i chose. I think it's the best known of the invader bugs.
  Now we split our picture up into useful chunks (b). Those 2x6 pieces are easy to work with and you won't get confused while stacking later. If you look closer you notice that we can split them in 1x2 pieces (c). Those bits, black/white, black and white (d) are the "legos" we will build our cookie bars with. From this point I'll reference to them as bricks.


Advanced prep:

  now if you want to go into mass-production, probably with several motives like I did, or you simply like to put more science to your projects there are two more things to consider.

1. Count the black and the white pixels to calculate how much dough you have to color with cacao.

2. Count the bricks to know how wide our pastry tiles need to be. See picture 3 and 4.

  In the Example pic black and white are about even. Further i counted 9 black bricks, 3 white bricks and 28 bi-colored ones. 

As you can see in picture 4 some motives have bigger parts, you might want to cut them as one piece
   




Step 2: Making the Pastry

If you have your own butter pastry recipe feel free to use it if not here is a simple one.

Butter dough recipe: 

250g             butter (room temperature )
250g             sugar
3 tsp             vanilla sugar
1                    egg yolk
1                    egg
2 spoons     rum   or     backing flavor (rum, butter rum, what you want)

           Stir everything together. 

500g            flour

           Screen the flour on the butter sugar mix while kneading butter-sugar-stuff.

Further you need some spoons of cacao powder to color a part of the pastry.
In case of the the example picture the black and white ratio is roughly 50:50 so color have of the      dough with cacao nicely dark brown. 4 to 5 spoons should make it don't use to much or the dough will get to dry , knead it well the color will adjust.
Now form bowls two bowls, put foile arround it and put the dough at least 4 hours in the fridge.

Step 3: Prep the Dough Tiles

Get the dough out of the fridge and let it get a bit tender.

Now we need to roll out two rectangular tiles of each color. In the example they should each be 30cm wide. Further we need a 10cm wide black tile and and small 5cm wide white tile.

the tiles need to be 0.5cm thick. be acurate!

The two big plates are glewed together with egg white like in picture two. now everyhing goes in the fridge again for two hours or so.
 



Step 4: Cookie Bar Constrution

Things we need to contruct cookie dough bars: a ruler, a sharp knife, foil and a right angel thingy to stabilise our bricks. i build this thingy out two wooden boards. 

  Each bi-colored brick will be a 0,5 cm slice from the two layer tile, the others will be 1 cm each.

  Now comes the fun part! Coat your construction sight in foil and start cutting the first brick from colored tile, its the bottom right brick of our pic. cut the next peace on the plan an press it tenderly to the first one.

Now...repeat. cut, transfer, stack, press together over and over again like in picture 2.

  when your done roll the foil around the bar, wrinkle the ends together and put it in the fridge (picture 3)

  Note: after a while the pastry will get warm and therefore sticky so the bricks will glue together just fine.
  If you want you can cut the edges so the cookies will look perfectly rectangular later. I didn't.

Step 5: Backing Thoose Delicius Aliens

Now comes the best part when you cut the first bar and..... tada!!! we din't mess it up.

  preheat the stove around 160°C, cut down as much 0,5cm thick slicess as you like. Bake those bugs for 10 to 15 minutes and enjoy.




Step 6: Notes

The bars should last for two weeks in the fridge.

there is much sugar in this recipe so the cookies might get to hard for someones taste. so you might want to tune the recipe or use your own one.

  my bricks are 0,5x1cm from the bi-colored and 1cm from the mono-colored tiles but feel free to scale the proportions.

Of course the baking time depends on your dough recipe and also if you like the cookies darker or brighter. I recommend you make some test-runs where you bake just a few slices a time.
 
I hope you like my method and your mind is already wandering to what else you could make with it.

thx for reading

  
phil

Comments

author
King_of_Creepers101 made it!(author)2016-11-29

i love the game and these... are... AAAWWWEEESSSOOOMMMEEE!!!

author
xmiffy made it!(author)2011-04-08

you are awesommeee!!!!
it must had taken a ton of time to do this project!
those are the coolest cookies i've ever seen :D

author
biggy+smalls made it!(author)2009-12-28

i live in the US and have never heard of vanilla sugar. Where did you get it?

author
schaude made it!(author)2010-01-03

simply check the online markets for the german "vanillezucker".
or try bourbon vanilla flavoured sugar - you can make your own yummy one!
vanilla sugar most of the times is artificially flavoured.

author
schaude made it!(author)2010-11-04

mostly so called "vanilla" in everyday food products is wood (sawdust) flavoured with a special fungus, that tastes like vanilla. another way of producing the fragrance is taking the waste of paper production (lignine) with the lignine sulfonic acid in it. tastes like vanilla, a bit more aggressive, and is really cheap.
the original orchid producing vanilla is rare and more expensive than the worldwide demand of vanilla flavoured sweets. "In fact, 97% of vanilla used as a flavor and fragrance is synthetic" (http://vanilla.servolux.nl/vanilla_facts.html). other sources are talking about 1% of the worldwide vanilla flavourings coming from original vanilla beans.

interested? have a look at...

- overview of the vanilla genus: http://www.henriettesherbal.com/eclectic/kings/vanilla.html

- description of the genus in the 'flora of north america': http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=1&taxon_id=134375

- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vanilla_%28genus%29

author
biggy+smalls made it!(author)2010-01-03

thanks, will do!

author
Speedmite made it!(author)2010-01-10

Do you think this could work with chocolate and vanilla sugar cookie dough?

author
superpat182 made it!(author)2009-12-29

these are by far the coolest cookies ever.  and btw you may want to check your oven... its being invaded.

author
NoFiller made it!(author)2009-12-28

Great method, definitely doing this next year.

author
metal-matt made it!(author)2009-12-28

photo's of the finished products would be nice, but good 'ible all the same.

author
chiefzando made it!(author)2009-12-27

great stuff, looks really cool.  I'm going to try this out really soon. 

Do you think you could post a picture or 2 of what they look like after they bake?  just to see how much they expand/warp

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