Fidget spinners are everywhere. Web sites showing you how to make one are all over the net--including here at Instructables. There are even edible fidget spinners on line. Almost all of them still use a non-edible part in the center. I don't know about you, but I don't want to eat a cookie with a metal bearing in it.
The robotics coach showed me a video that showed how to make a totally edible spinner. I checked, there are a lot of people out there making edible spinners--cookies or candy. Some of the cookie versions had an edible axle. It is tricky to make it sturdy enough to still spin. I wanted something that I could produce as quickly as possible and have it work well without falling apart.
I used a variety of sources and combined the best features of each. I found a few tricks of my own along the way.
When I started this instructable, there were no edible spinners here at Instructables. I decided to publish this anyway. I hope, between the 2 available now, people can find the method that works for them.
Step 1: Ingredients:
2 1/2 cup Flour
3/4 cup Sugar
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1 cup Butter--softened, not melted
2 teaspoons Vanilla
Royal icing--I cheated and bought it ready made
Fidget shaped cookie cutter** or a template to trace around
Milkshake straw--a milkshake straw has a larger diameter than a regular straw
Cap from a water bottle
This recipe makes 10 spinners.
*My son wants to argue with the idea that candy cigarettes are edible. His contention is that they taste terrible. This may/may not be true but they are still edible from a technical point of view. You could probably find alternatives to using them such as a section of candy cane.
**It helps to know people who know people. There is a cookie cutter being made for me by one of the robotics mentors. Thanks Russ!!!!
Step 2: Cookie Dough
Mix the dry ingredients--flour, sugar, salt--in a bowl. Add the softened butter and vanilla. Mix until it is uniformly combined and comes together into a ball. Add a tablespoon of water if necessary to get it to come together.
Chill until firm--about a half hour. If you are doing this on a cool day, you may be able to skip the chilling but my butter was very soft so I chilled it.
Step 3: Shaping the Cookie Parts
Roll out the dough to just about 1/4 inch thick--maybe just a touch thicker. Use a bit of flour if necessary to prevent sticking.
For each cookie, you need to bake one spinner body (cut around your pattern) and 2 bottle cap cookies (just press the bottle cap into the dough). Before baking, use a drinking straw to make a hole in the center of the spinner body. You may want to recut these holes as soon as the cookies come out of the oven. Make sure that you do it quickly, while the cookies are still soft.
Arrange the cookies on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. This is basically a shortbread recipe so there will not be much spreading of the cookies as they bake.
Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes or until slightly browned.
Allow the cookies to cool on the cookie sheet. If you remove them while they are still warm, you risk distorting the shape. The cookie must remain totally flat.
Step 4: Assembling the Spinner--first Try
After the cookies have cooled, mix up your royal icing.
Use the icing to decorate the spinner bodies. Be careful to stay clear of the center. Leave a space about the size of the bottle cap cookies around the center hole. Set these aside to dry completely.
Meanwhile, cut short pieces of the candy cigarettes. These need to be just a bit longer than the thickness of the cookies. Glue one of these pieces to the flat side of half of your bottle cap cookies using the royal icing as glue. Let these dry completely. These are the axles of the spinners.
Place one spinner body on one axle. Carefully dab a bit of royal icing on the top of the candy cigarette and attach the other bottle cap cookie. You want enough icing to glue it but not so much that it gets on the spinner body. Allow this to dry too before you try spinning it. (I know that it will be hard to resist but you need to be strong.)
Let dry completely means "let dry until tomorrow". Trust me on this one. If your family is like mine, you may want to personally inform each child what DO NOT TOUCH means and still post a sign.
I made a few balls of the royal icing and left them on the tray. I planned to use these to test if the rest of the icing was dry. My oldest son did not believe that the DO NOT TOUCH included these. He ate them and one of the bottle cap tiny cookies--it was so small that he didn't think I would notice. Teenagers!!!!! (He was also eating my candy cigarettes right after he told me how terrible they taste. I just don't understand.)
This was the method I found on most of the web sites. One out of 9 actually stayed in one piece and the spinner rotated. Not a good success rate.
Step 5: Assembling the Spinner--second Try
I had some dough left over that did not fit on the first cookie sheet. I decided to keep it--just in case. Good thing I did.
The axle is the toughest part, just as I expected.
This time I stuck the candy cigarette into half of the bottle cap pieces before baking. The other half got a small hole (skinny straw). Candy cigarettes melt in the oven--at least the part that is inside the cookie.
Bake the cookie first and insert the cigarette into the hot soft cookie as soon as it comes out of the oven. The holes in the remaining cookies can be redone while the cookies are hot. The holes can be enlarged after the cookie has cooled by inserting the tip of a sharp knife into the hole and twisting it.
After cooling, the spinner body slips over the axle. The cap with the hole slides onto the axle. Royal icing glue attaches the cigarette to the bottle cap piece. You still have to wait for it to dry but at least you only have one dry time. Since the icing is separated from the spinner body by a layer of cookie (bottle cap), it is less likely to stick the moving part to the axle.
I did try gluing a cookie cap back together after it broke. The spinner still worked.
This method worked on all but one cookie. On that one the axle was not standing straight up. So, you should make sure that the cigarettes are at a 90 degree angle.
Step 6: Chocolate--alternative to Royal Icing, Quick Drying Version
Chocolate hardens quicker than royal icing--especially if you pop it in the refrigerator. I melted chocolate chips an put them in a small plastic bag. I clipped the corner so that I had control of where the melted chocolate ended up.
I made these the same as the 2nd version. I inserted a length of candy cigarette in half of the bottle cap cookies after baking. I then ran a line of melted chocolate chips around the joint and put the cookies in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
I placed a spinner body on each axle and then placed the caps with holes over the end of each axle. I squeezed a bit of chocolate over the end of the axle and the cookie. After another 10 minutes in the refrigerator, I was able to feed the neighbor kids. They demonstrated the spinners for the video.
I have been told that I need to make another batch tomorrow. I have a feeling that I will be feeding the whole neighborhood before long. This is a great way to make new friends.