I just returned from an excellent family vacation in St. Simons Island, Georgia. My very close-knit family lives there and in the surrounding areas, so I am frequently down there for family functions. This weekend, we were throwing a baby shower for my cousin Brad and his wife Lizzi who are expecting their first child in October! To add to my excitement — they are not finding out the baby’s gender! It made buying gifts into a fun challenge since I had to find clothes and accessories that were gender-neutral. The party was a huge success!

I love to bake, so I was eager to make something special to contribute to the family baby shower. Like the gifts, I wanted it to include both genders, and I also wanted to bring a bit of the Big Apple down south. Enter the black-and-white cookie. I love eating black-and-white cookies (especially the MINI ones!), and I love to make them even more. I decided to create “black-and-pinks” and “black-and-blues.”

First, I baked mini black and white cookies according to this recipe from Epicurious. (Since I have a big family, I actually doubled the recipe.) To simplify, I lined each cookie sheet with parchment paper. It makes a HUGE difference and helps you remove these cake-like cookies from the pan without crumbling apart. While the cookies were cooling, I began making the icing according to the directions. You will be putting half the icing into one bowl and adding cocoa powder. The other half is your white icing.

Split the white icing into two separate bowls. Whisk in a drop or two of blue food coloring into one bowl, and a drop or two of red into the other until you’re satisfied with your pink and blue colors. When the cookies are COMPLETELY cooled (don’t put the icing on when it is still warm; it’ll run right off!), ice half of each cookie in pink or blue. I actually went back and applied a second layer of pink or blue icing because I wanted a stronger color (the icing is a bit sheer). When you’re happy with your pink and blue halves, go ahead and ice the other half of all of the cookies with the chocolate icing. Let the icing set overnight! It becomes like a shell. Using a tube of Cake Mate white icing, I piped on the question marks.

These cookies were a HUGE hit with the family and the expectant couple! Thought I would share this idea… it could be done in all-pink or all-blue for those who know the baby’s gender (without question marks) too!