Professor Layton Hint Coin Cookies

cookies

What are those things that…you know…help you solve puzzles with clues in Layton games…? Gimme a hint?!

Ah, that’s it, hint coins. Playing Layton games would probably be darn near impossible without cheating or being a genius. And it just wouldn’t be the same game without frantically tapping around the touch pad, scouring the area for coins. It would be invaluable having some of those in real life (and possibly use them in Who Wants To Be A Millionaire). So why not? And while we’re at it we can make them sugar cookies.

Fun Fact: The Laytonmobile is built with a high ceiling to accommodate Layton’s hat which he never takes off. Despite its good condition, Luke believes that nobody would want to steal it.

Creating the stamp was a puzzle in itself

Creating the stamp was a puzzle in itself

I had to get a bit crafty with this, and by me I mean my husband and I (thanks Tom!). Trying to solve the puzzle of how to create the iconic Layton logo, and keep it food friendly at the same time needed no hint coin. Ruling out clays and polymers, for obvious reasons, I chose to make a normal stamp out of salt dough, which hardens to about the consistency of a rock when baked at a low heat over a long period of time. Again, with Tom and I flexing our creative muscles, we were able to sculpt a replica of the Layton seal using one parts salt, one parts water and two parts flour. It’s funny how something you learned in kindergarden is still handy to this day. Despite losing a few picarats trying to solve the stamp conundrum, it turned out pretty great in the end. I included the recipe I use for sugar cookies as well. By far this is my favourite recipe, its easy and comes out great every time without much spread.

Sugar Cookies:
1 cup of unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups icing sugar
1 egg, room temperature
2-3 teaspoons of vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

“Gold” glaze:
1 egg white
2 1/2 teaspoons of yellow dye
Optional: 2 tablespoons maple syrup (These cookies are sweet, but I have a greater sweet tooth.)
Optional: If you want to kick these up one more notch, gold food colouring spray is also available. Unfortunately, I live in the middle of nowhere.

Cream together softened butter and confectioner’s sugar. Add egg and the vanilla extract. Mix until the egg is thoroughly incorporated, it may separate then come back together. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt, then add little by little to the mixture. Mix well, dough is ready when I touch it, it has a little give, but does not stick to my fingers.

[Recommended but optional] Refrigerate dough until chilled, this makes rolling, cutting and stamping much easier. Roll out on parchment to about 1/4 an inch thick, use flour for dusting as necessary.

Ready for the oven

Ready for the oven

Then, stamp, cut and bake at 400 degrees for 7-8 minutes. Make sure to take cookies out before they begin to brown.

While cookies are baking prepare the golden glaze. Mix egg white and yellow dye together (and maple syrup). Immediately upon taking cookies out of the oven brush mix over cookies using a pastry brush.

This version makes about 9 large hint coins.

Fun Fact: Most of the voice actors in the English-language release of the games put on fake British accents. Actual British-English test players of the game reportedly hated Lani Minella’s mockney accent for Luke so much that the British edition completely redubs Luke’s lines with English-born Maria Darling. Christopher Robin Miller, however, put on an accent for the Professor so convincing that many players think he is British.


DIFFICULTY: ONE MOOGLE
1moogle

Poké Puffs

PokePuffsPokémon X&Y recently released worldwide bringing with it a new 3D adventure packed with new features. There were so many new bonus extras my head literally exploded. It probably took me a good five minutes to get over seeing everything rendered, including your character, in 3D. It simply looked great, considering the massive overhaul from previous generations.

After cleaning up the pieces and getting in to the thick of my adventure, Froakie in tow, I noticed that one of the newer features, Pokémon Amie, let you feed delectable looking creme puffs to Pokémon, called “Poké Puffs”. Severely jealous of the mountains of delicious looking treats I was feeding my Pokémon, I decided that enough was enough, and I’d make my own version of real life Poké Puffs.

Once on the lips forever on the hips, Sylveon.

Once on the lips forever on the hips, Sylveon.

At first it didn’t go as planned, I had added too much colouring to the mixture and some Puffs didn’t rise or only partially rose. Then, later, disaster struck while dying the whipped cream. I recommend using a mock cream instead of whipped cream if you’re new to baking, real whipped cream tends to go funny too quickly and trying to create a variety of coloured creams can be overwhelming. The creme puffs themselves however are decently easy to make, and don’t require an insane amount of skill.

Fun fact: Creme Puffs are also used as a treat in FFXI, granting a boost to INT, perfect for the Black Mage in your life. There’s even a dance troupe called “The Creme Puffs” that perform during special events.

Blobs used transform

Blobs used transform

Choux Pastry:
– 1/2 cup all purpose flour
– 1/2 teaspoon granulated white sugar
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
– 1/2 cup (120 ml) water
– 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
A few drops of pink, green and orange food colouring

Whipped Cream:
– 2 cup heavy whipping cream (double cream)
– 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
– 4 tablespoons granulated white sugar
Optional: Mint, strawberry and oraPirouline Wafer Biscuitsuit, Jelly etc.s, Pirouline Wafer Biscuits, Chocolate etc.

For the Choux Pastry:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or lightly butter or spray the pan with a non stick vegetable spray.

In a bowl combine the flour, sugar and salt.

Place the butter and water in a heavy saucepan over medium high heat and bring to a boil. (Make sure that the butter melts before the water boils to reduce the amount of evaporation.) Remove from heat and add the flour mixture, all at once, stir until combined. Return saucepan to the heat and stir constantly until the dough comes away from the sides of the pan and forms a thick smooth ball (about 1-2 minutes). Transfer the dough to another bowl and beat slowly to release the steam from the dough (about a minute). Once the dough is lukewarm start adding the lightly beaten eggs (dough will separate and then come together) this will yield a smooth paste. Divide dough into three separate bowls and add a few drops (2-3) of food colouring to each. Remember not to add too much, or else this will prevent the pastry from rising. Spoon 12 small mounds of dough onto the baking sheet, spacing about 2 inches apart.

Bake for 15 minutes and then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Continue to bake for a further 30 to 35 minutes or until the shells, when split, are almost dry inside.

For Whipped Cream: In a large mixing bowl place the whipping cream, vanilla extract, and sugar and stir to combine. Whip hip the cream just until stiff peaks form, be careful not to over beat. You can also add a bit of flavoured extract to your whipped cream, as Pokepuffs come in a variety of flavours; such as mint, strawberry or orange.

To Assemble: Split the pastry shells in half and fill (or pipe) with whipped cream, transfer to fridge ASAP. Separate the remaining whipped cream into three bowls, adding a bit of food colouring to each. Once again be careful as to how much is added. Pipe or spoon coloured cream on top of puff cases. Add garnishes as deemed fit, it’s personal preference!

Fun Fact: it is rumoured that the chef of Catherine de Medici, of the esteemed Italian Medici family, created the Creme Puff. Too bad they don’t defend from Templar attacks.

DIFFICULTY: THREE AND A HALF MOOGLES
moogles