Monday, March 29, 2010

This One's for You, Mr. Andrew Garcia

Obsessed. Fanatic. How about just plain crazy.
Finished Cookie 3

Yup.. I'm afraid I'm all these things. I'm not proud to admit it... but I have a tendency to obsess over musicians. First it was a Korean group called H.O.T, then it was Nsync, then it was OneRepublic.. and now it's a sexy man named Andrew Garica.

Finished Cookie 4

He's one of the 10 remaining contestants on this season's American Idol. I fell in love with this sweet and adorable guy from the first audition they showed on TV. Actually, there is a deeper reason why I was drawn to him but this isn't the place to say it. Next thing I knew I was searching all of YouTube for anything and everything Andrew Garica. I discovered TONS of videos thanks to a fellow fan that dedicated an account (Team Andrew Garcia) to search out all of his videos and grouped them all in one place for all other Andrew fans to see.

Andrew talked a lot about his family in the clips that they'd show on American Idol. I know all about his parents who were involved in gangs growing up in Compton, his absolutely gorgeous and super sweet girlfriend, and their beautiful son. How can you NOT love a man who's so down to earth, humble, talented and just oozes love for all those around him??

Finished Cookie 2

I know I'm rambling about how great I think he is but these are the reasons why I decided to make these cookies. I wanted to encourage him in his journey through American Idol because he's talented and I want him to succeed. One of the areas I think I'm gifted with is the gift of encouragement and service. So.. that's what I do. I hand-make cards.. I buy flowers for a friend feeling low.. I labor over hours on pastries loved ones can enjoy.

It was a LONG and frustrating process met with failure after failure. But it got done and hopefully it will bring a smile to his face and somehow feel the love and pleasure of God in all of it.

I wanted to make the American Idol logo initially and write on there something about Andrew being the next American Idol but it morphed into "Andrew Garica" in the American Idol font.

Printed out the American Idol logo and traced the American Idol logo on a plastic sheet called acetate.

I traced what I wanted the stencil to be with a sharpie then cut it out with an exacto knife.
Exacto Knife

The American Idol logo has a base outline underneath the white lettering so my plan was to make a stencil of that first, then to make one of the white letters.

I'd just like to say that trying to copy a logo or something similar needs absolute PERFECTION. Otherwise it looks messy and not like the logo at all. Do it free hand? Hell no. Not unless you want it to look like a kindergartner drew all over it.

After I got the initial stencils I used my favorite sugar cookie recipe from Confetti Cakes and cut out the logo shape and Andrew's glasses.


After baking and cooling, I went to flood them with the base royal icing only to find that it looked like these the next day:
Mess Up 3

The butter in the cookie had somehow soaked into the royal icing after drying.

The same thing happened with the glasses.
Mess Up 2

You can't see it too well with the white but believe me... it was NOT a pretty thing to look at. So, naturally, I tried it again. Made more dough, using the same recipe and cut out more logo shapes and more glasses shapes. Then I flooded them with royal icing... let them dry over night.. just to discover...
Mess Up

It did it AGAIN! The sheer frustration and anger of doing it TWICE made me give up. I distributed all the mess ups to people at my small group and church. At this point I was feeling pretty stupid for even trying to make something for someone who will probably not even get it and even if he did get it most definitely wouldn't eat.

But a friend at church, after finally telling people what they were supposed to be, encouraged me to try again.

I pulled a recipe from one of my favorite cookbooks, Dorie Greenspan's Baking cookbook and gave it one more try. This time.. no glasses ones. It was so much work and I didn't want to have all that waste again in case it didn't work. But thankfully, this one worked! Kind of... the butter in the cookies still seemed to soak into the royal icing after drying but it was good enough.

Just getting the writing on there took over 4 hours... for 12 cookies!! There were 4 different stencils I had to make and use. One for the background of "Andrew", one for the background of "Garica", one for the white "A", one for "ndrew", one for the white "G", and one for "arica". Don't ask me why I thought it would be a good idea to do that... I guess I thought it would look cleaner.

Here's the base of "Andrew".

The "Garcia" stencil went after.
Garica Stencil

The blue icing went CAREFULLY over the stencil.
Garcia Stencil 2

Even it out with a small offset spatula.
Garcia Stencil 4

Gently lift off..
Garcia Stencil 5

Wait till those dry.. then start on the white lettering...
A Stencil

Four hours later..

After drying I added an outline then sprinkled it with some crystal sugar to add a bit of a finishing touch. I had thought about writing "Good Luck", "is the next American Idol", "I love you", or something but I didn't want to clutter it. Plus, there wasn't enough space to write much of anything. I was so tired at that point I just want it done!
Finished Cookie

I wrote a long letter... which didn't even have everything I wanted to say... and sent it today FedEx.

There's no guarantee that it'll even get to him. For all I know the staff at American Idol will deem it a terrorist threat and send it off to the police to do some of their fancy forensics on it to see if there's anything lethal or dangerous in it.

And to clarify... NO, I DON'T EXPECT HIM TO EAT IT. Those sugar cookies last forever (almost) in its wrapped state. I once ate a sugar cookie that had been made over 2 months before and it tasted fine... though I wouldn't suggest it. A friend of mine has been keeping a small collection of all the decorated cookies I've made and given to him and they're all still lookin good.

So Andrew.. if you're reading this... keep them as a memento of this Idol experience. If you're brave enough, give it a taste. It's just a sugar cookie. You won't hurt my feelings if you decide not to eat them either. If you do.. just keep in mind... your mouth might turn BLUE.

I've asked him to give me a shout-out on the American Idol Facebook site if he gets my cookies just so that I know he got them. Hopefully, I will be able to do a follow-up post reporting that he indeed got them.. but we'll see about that.

I never did figure out why the sugar cookies did that. I've used that recipe hundreds of times and NEVER had a problem with it before. Maybe it's the crazy hot weather we've been having.. I don't know. If you know... please.. tell me.

I'll end with one of my favorite covers that Andrew has done. =) The guys in the shower are hilarious..


  1. OMG, you are a nut! I say that lovingly. ;)

  2. Nice! Thanks for teaching me how to make these. I'm going to send some to Kobe now haha.

  3. hahahahah dude. AWESOME.i hope he eats them right before a show and his tongue is blue.

  4. You're f'ing NUTS! It's ok to obsess about boys tho?

    And really, the readership DEMANDS to know the reason: ("Actually, there is a deeper reason why I was drawn to him but this isn't the place to say it"). He has a hot ass? You saw him naked one time in Budapest? Your sister's friend's cousin said he was good in bed? His face appeared as Christ in your dream?

  5. Tony, the deeper reason is... all of the above. You're good.

  6. this is what u done ;D

    good job