Baking date: October 26, 2018
This year, my son helped to coach players in the junior football program he grew up in. The kids on the team he helped to coach are 6th and 7th graders, who are on the D2 team. The D2 team is more of an instructional level than the competitive D1 squad.
My son always played on the D1 squad when he was in the program. His D2 team made it to a “Bowl” game, that took place October 27. Because it was so close to Halloween, I decided to make the players and coaches football player “mummies”.
I used a gingerbread cookie recipe my mom sent me from the Mary Meade Country Cookbook. The edition my mom has is probably from the mid- to late- 60s. The recipe is:
Ingredients: 1 cup softened butter, 1 cup sugar, 1 beaten egg, 2 cups molasses, 2 tablespoons vinegar, 8 cups flour (yes, 8 cups!), 1 teaspoon salt, 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, 2 tablespoons ginger, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, 3 teaspoons baking soda, 1 cup boiling water
Directions: Sift flour, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg – set aside (for amounts this large, I place all the ingredients in a bowl and use a whisk to “sift” them). Beat egg in small bowl; set aside. Cream butter and sugar. Beat in egg, molasses and vinegar. Dissolve the baking soda in the boiling water (it will fizz up!). Add water alternately with flour mixture. Chill at least one hour prior to rolling out. Bake at 350 degrees for 14 minutes (time may vary, depending on your oven and the size of your cut out cookie. The gingerbread man cut out I used was 14 minutes).
When decorating the cookies, I started with an all white royal icing base. I then piped on a black royal icing square where the eyes would go – I got the idea for the eyes from a Nicki Lee Bakes video tutorial. At first, I thought it looked like a bunch of astronauts!
After I added the red royal icing and then candy eyeballs, I added strips of white using a #46 basket weave tip. I then used royal blue cookie icing (pre-made royal icing, if you will) to pipe on the helmets, with royal icing dyed golden yellow for the facemask and stripes on the helmet. Finally, I added each players’ number in royal blue cookie icing.
Here are the finished cookies for players:
These are a few on the ones that I made for the seven coaches (including my son), For those, I piped a baseball hat instead of a helmet:
And, of course, we can’t forget the Team “Mummy”:
I placed each cookie in a treat bag. After the game, as the coaches spoke to them, I handed out cookies to the kids and coaches. I also had made cinnamon spice drop cookies (I use butter, not shortening) for parents, siblings and other fans in attendance.
The kids were a muddy mess after the Bowl game:
Even though they lost, the kids loved the cookies! I believe you should always be paying it forward as much as possible. Cookies were one way I could do that for these kids.
Below is a slide show of my gentle giant (Walkersville High School varsity O-line tackle), with the kids throughout the season.