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HUGE cookie order.......not sure where to start

post #1 of 66
Thread Starter 
Hi

Okay I admit I think I'm in over my head.
I work for a huge company but we are spread out over 3 buildings. So I get this idea to give our comms manager a sample of cookies because my company normally give out something to the staff for valentines. She liked it and now she asked it I will make 1500 cookies for the 9th. I really don't know where to start. This is the first time I ever tried making cookies. Please, someone help me? Maybe when I calm down I'll be able to think straight but for now I'm not sure whether I'm really happy or scared icon_rolleyes.gif

Oh boy

Regards
Shamani
It's easy to have a complicated idea.
It's very very hard to have a simple idea.
Carver Mead
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It's easy to have a complicated idea.
It's very very hard to have a simple idea.
Carver Mead
Reply
post #2 of 66
I think I'd face some sort of activation barrier if this were my task.

Do you have available freezer space? If so, I'd mix up, roll and cut out your cookies. Then freeze them on cookie sheets and place in storage bags in the freezer. Then, once you're closer to the date you only have to bake and decorate.

I hope you're getting paid very well! That's a lot of money in the ingredients, but also the time!
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Breast Cancer 3 Day Walker
Tampa Bay 2007
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post #3 of 66
Just take it one step at a time. Write down your game plan and go with it. I'd start with your recipe and the ingredients you will need. As for making the cookies I would estimate how many cookies a day I need (or can) bake. I'm sure you'll get it done as long as she lets you know in plenty of time what kind of cookies. And I would get started on them ASAP!! LOL

Congratulations on your large order and Good Luck with it. icon_smile.gif

Lazy_Susan icon_wink.gif
"God will probably not be interested in how much we included in our day, but how much of our day included Him." - Allia Zobel-Nolan
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"God will probably not be interested in how much we included in our day, but how much of our day included Him." - Allia Zobel-Nolan
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post #4 of 66
deep breaths....HOLY COW! icon_eek.gif

I know when some of the other cookie-makers said they had dozens to make, I asked what kind of time-frame they use. Most of them said they start baking early and freeze the cookies and decorate later. I'll bump this up and hopefully someone in the business will see it. Good luck. <gulp>

kos
post #5 of 66
Thread Starter 
They are not really big cookies probably around 5cm(2inch) heart shaped and the icing is very basic just white icing covering and some red lines running through.

Yes they are paying for them. icon_biggrin.gif

thanks you guys I couldn't log on fast enough to 'chat' to you.

Shamani
It's easy to have a complicated idea.
It's very very hard to have a simple idea.
Carver Mead
Reply
It's easy to have a complicated idea.
It's very very hard to have a simple idea.
Carver Mead
Reply
post #6 of 66
since I'm a fairly new baker myself .. I can't really offer advice ... but the one offered already is great!! GOOD LUCK1 thumbs_up.gif
post #7 of 66
Here is what I do on really large orders.

Make amount of dough I think I will need (add an extra batch just in case) on one day. Before I put in freezer i roll each disk into just thicker than I use to cut. you can lay them flat on a jelly roll pan, separate with wax paper, and then wrap the whole thing in saran wrap when done. Then dough will last 2 mmonths in freezer

Then 2 weeks before i will roll out the cookies and bake...then return to freezer. i bought the largest freezer tupperware type things I could find. You can stack them and freezer (just don't open box again until ready to ice so they don't get frost.


Then, depending on the speed you decorate and the speed the icing you use dries, bake 4-5 days in advance. i suggest you ice and bag as many as you can at one time. The quicker you get them iced and in the bag the fresher they will be for longer.

Remember to make some extra for breakage.

let me know if you need more.

sorry for the typos school bus coming soon...
post #8 of 66
let's see...

at 12 cookies per cookie sheet, 2 sheets in oven at a time, that's 24 cookies in 10-15 min. 2 more sheet is prep (total of 4 sheets running) that would be 96 cookies an hour...so about 16 hours of baking. (adjust this estimate for the size of your sheets and oven)

as for icing:

1) could you do a pour icing (similar to concept of how ganache is done)? That way you could put large number of cookies on cooling racks and just ice all at once by pouring it on, excess dripping off onto parchment or into pan underneath.

2) can the read lines be freehand squiggles? if so, can do them on large number of cookies at time by again using method of cookies on rack or on parchment and just squiggle away.
Keep on cakin'!
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Keep on cakin'!
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post #9 of 66
If you cut ahead and freeze, be sure that you don't stack them too high. The ones on the bottom will get smashed if you do. After they are frozen solid, then you can stack as high as you like. Do you have this much freezer space?

Are you doing this in your home oven? How many can you bake at one time? If its 24, that's about 13 straight hours of baking if you don't burn anything! (Remember to rotate if you fill more than one level of baking racks.) How long does it take to mix the dough & how many times do you have to do it? Does it have to be refrigerated first? I'd say you are looking at 60 hours minimum of work with a home oven and small mixer. Where are you going to put them all while the icing dries? Do you have enough parchment, pans, boards, racks, to decorate/store them? Do you have to wrap them individually? Do you have enough food coloring? Are you charging enough to cover utilities, extra supplies, 60 hours worth of time, and all of your hair falling out? (LOL)

Think hard before doing this. If you don't have the time, space and equipment you will regret accepting this order. If you can't pull it off, you won't get many future orders for anything. If you do have it, good luck! I hope everything turns out well!
It's not how good you are, but how well you can fix your mistakes.
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It's not how good you are, but how well you can fix your mistakes.
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post #10 of 66
Oh...make sure you have ordered all the supplies way ina dvance...nothing worse than firguring out you are short 100 bags the night before.... icon_biggrin.gif

Icing colors, 10x sugar, etc.

I like dougs idea of the freehand squiggles...very time effective.....
post #11 of 66
thought: does one of the buildings have a cafeteria that has a kitchen w/ ovens and large cookie sheets you could use (since you are doing this for the company)?

and a bit out there: would they let you do this on company time?!?! (a stretch but ya gotta try! icon_rolleyes.gif )
Keep on cakin'!
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Keep on cakin'!
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post #12 of 66
I've been wondering over the past few weeks, how I would cope with a large order.

The other day, i experimented with icing and found that I could ice at least twice the same amount of cookies than royal flooding if i used poured mmf. I put it on with a spatular, it goes right to the edge without dripping off!

I was told that it would take ages to dry, but i found that it's not too bad, no different than royal. I haven't tried to tint it yet though.

GOOD LUCK, and let us all know how you get on! thumbs_up.gif
post #13 of 66
I can not even imagine making 1500 regular cookies, much less 1500 cut out, decorated cookies! I would seriously rethink this unless you are getting paid REALLY well for this (sounds a tad stressful due to the sheer quantity, plus being your first order!)....maybe you can recruit a friend or someone to help you? If you pull this off, you will have to share with us the details! Good luck, I hope it all works out for you!
post #14 of 66
icon_smile.gif Well, you know what you're capable of..If you decide to accept this order, you need a lot of help esp. if these are decorated cookies..

Just don't promise what you cannot deliver !!! icon_smile.gif
post #15 of 66
Do you have any vacation time???

I have made large amounts of cookies ,but not near that many. You have to have a plan.

Sherry
I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past."
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I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past."
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