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Saturday, November 20, 2010

Starlight Saturday

Save the Earth Saturday

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, people are beginning to think about what cookies to make for Christmas, or even thinking about making cut-out cookies for Turkey Day.

Yeah, we can save money by purchasing those pretty sugar sprinkles when they're on sale, but did you know that you could save even more than that, reduce waste, and reuse plastic containers?

It's true. Instead of buying more sugars this holiday season, make your own!

It's really simple, and the sugars can have a very bright color to them. The trick is to not use too much of the food coloring.

How do I know this works?

Well, my mom wanted to make cookies with my niece, but we were limited by the color selection. However, she had plenty of sugar and a box of food colors - red, green, yellow, blue - so we were set.

The red and green sugars I made worked fine, but I think there was just a bit too much coloring because the sugars were caking slightly, however, the yellow sugar worked great.

The difference?

Instead of using the red and green from the dropper bottles, I used red and green from her larger bottles instead. I made the yellow sugars from the dropper bottle color.

There are a couple of different methods, but you only need a small bowl for mixing (Corelle salad/cereal bowls worked great), a spoon, white granulated sugar and food coloring.

I used about 6 drops of color to about 1/2 cup of sugar, and mixed thoroughly. There shouldn't be any color left over in the bowl, but if there is, just add a little bit more sugar and mix thoroughly.

Color Choices
Want more than just red, blue, yellow and green but not sure how to get there?

Have no fear because McCormick makes neon colors too!

That's right, so now you can make light blue and deep blue as well as pink and neon purple.

Still don't have the right color? Looking for something darker, like black? Well, McCormick does make black food coloring too, just not sure if your local store will have it in stock!

Mixing Colors
When mixing colors, be sure to add your coloring to the bowl before the sugar so the colors can mix properly. Remember that you only want about 6 total drops to 1/2 cup sugar. Many of the online food color mixes are for 16 oz of frosting, so I've made a small color chart based on 1/2 cup of sugar to help you get started:

Dark Orange: 4 drops of red, 2 drops yellow
Orange: 3 drops red, 3 drops yellow
Light Orange: 2 drops red and 4 drops yellow

Of course, you can experiment with color mixes before you start coloring your sugars to find the color that you want. If you experiment, be sure and keep track of what you do so you'll be able to recreate that color!

Now you have your colors, how do you store them?

If you have any empty sugar/candy sprinkle bottles left, you can reuse them. If not, you can use a container with an air-tight seal. Depending upon how much you made, an 8oz size container should work fine, but you may need a larger size if you made more than 1 cup of colored sugar (1C=8oz).

Be sure that sprinkles are stored in a clean, dry area too.

Happy decorating!

1 Moonbeams (comments):

Gracen Miller said...

Hmm...never thought of this before, Carrie, but it's a cool idea! Thanks for the tip!