How to Make Pilgrim Turkey Cookies
I know some people might grumble at the thought of seeing Thanksgiving cookie ideas weeks before Halloween. "Why rush through the holidays, Mike?!" I totally get it, and I swear I have a good reason. My goal for this year is to avoid the shipping headaches I had last year.
You see, when I began selling cookie cutters after Thanksgiving last year, shipping was a nightmare. Delivery times were delayed by a week, packages were lost. You name it, it happened. It's the holiday season and the Post Office did warn me of the elevated level of craziness. So I hope you don't mind seeing these pilgrim turkey cookies this early in the season. (And... I hope you don't mind seeing a possible Christmas idea in my next planned post. :) )
These pilgrim turkey cookies were inspired by the simple turkey cookies I posted two years ago. They use the same wet-on-wet tail feather technique that I used before, because it's quick and easy. However, this time around, I decided to go with a more whimsy and cartoony look for this pilgrim turkey pair.
Pilgrim Turkey Cookie Cutters
Added to the shop are two options for pilgrim turkey cookies: a boy cookie cutter version, as well as a girl cookie cutter version.
These two pilgrim turkey cookie cutters are available in various sizes: Large, Regular, and Mini. The Large size option is especially sized to best fit into 4" x 4" gift boxes, and is the size I decorated in the tutorial below.
Template for the Pilgrim Turkey Cookies
I provided a downloadable PDF template file for the pilgrim turkey cookie designs shown in this tutorial. In the file, I included both designs of the boy and girl with their bodies dressed as pilgrims. Also, I included alternative designs for both turkeys showing them holding a name sign, for a personalized touch.
You can download the pilgrim turkey cookie template HERE.
If you have a Kopykake or Pico projector, just print it out (or pull it up on your mobile device) and you are good to go. For those without a projector, follow the suggested steps below by cutting out the template and tracing the design onto the cookie with an edible food marker.
The Decorating Process
To make these pilgrim turkey cookies you will need the following suggested colors:
- White medium flood royal icing (I used Americolor Bright White.)
- Light Blue flood icing (I mixed Americolor Wedgewood with a the tiniest touch of Super Black.)
- Darker Blue medium icing (I used more food gel concentration of the Light Blue icing color above.)
- Dark Brown medium icing (I used Americolor Chocolate Brown.)
- Light Brown medium icing (I used Americolor Warm Brown.)
- Yellow medium icing (I used Americolor Egg Yellow)
- Black medium and piping icing (I used Americolor Super Black.)
- Red medium icing (I used Americolor Super Red.)
Begin by marking where the outline of the center head and body should be. I made a template from the template file above and used a food marker to draw the guideline on the cookie.
With white icing, pipe around the outer scalloped edge of the cookie. Then with different colored medium flood icing of your choosing, fill inwards in a striped, scalloped design. Below, I started flooding with the white, then the dark blue, and then filled the remaining area with light blue.
After one side of the tail section is flooded and still wet, quickly drag a toothpick or scribe tool between each scallop towards the center of the cookie as shown below. Be sure to wipe the tip of the toothpick/ scribe tool after EACH swipe through the icing. Otherwise, you’ll leave unwanted color all over the cookie.
Repeat Steps 2 and 3 with the other tail feather side.
After the tail feather section had time to set, flood the middle section with dark brown icing. Leave that to set for about 1 hour. Then pipe the black sections of the hat, the white collar sections on the brown body, and yellow outer toes, as shown below. Let these icing sections set for about 20 minutes.
Once the icing has set, add the next layer of details, which are the white band of the hat, the light brown head and neck, and the yellow center toes. Let the icing set completely (about an hour) before moving on.
Once the icing had set, add eyes with black icing and a beak with yellow icing on the face. Next, add a yellow buckle to the hat, and black bow tie ends on the white collar.
Lastly, add the red snood on the beak and the black center dot of the bow tie. The pilgrim turkey cookie is complete!
The steps above are summarized in this time-lapsed video.
The above tutorial shows how to decorate the pilgrim turkey boy, however the process to decorate the girl version is practically the same. In addition, the designs for both these turkeys can be modified slightly for a personalized touch, showing them holding a name sign. In the downloadable template file, I've included all four designs you see below.
As I mentioned before, the Large size option is perfect as a single gift box idea.
The clear gift box I used in the picture are 4" x 4" clear boxes from Clearbags.com. These boxes are great because they arrive flat for easy storage, and I love how they are crystal clear all over.
NOTE: Food Safety Packaging
For sanitary reasons and to maintain freshness, I would always seal a cookie in a heat-sealed bag before placing the cookie in gift box. However, for display purposes and because the plastic bag does not photograph well, I opted out of heat-sealing the cookies in the picture above.
In addition to these clear boxes, I'm slowly finding more 4" x 4" gift box options that might also work. Here are a few other alternatives.
- Thinner clear boxes from Clearbags.com
- Top face opening lid clear boxes from Clearbags.com
- Kraft paper bottom boxes with plastic sleeve from Clearbags.com
- Round window boxes from BRPBoxShop.com
All those options listed should work with these Large-size pilgrim turkey cookies. If you decide on one of these options for yourself, please let me know. I would love to know how well they worked out for you!