It’s amazing how a perfectly piped border can elevate a simple iced cookie to extraordinary heights! And no one is better at demonstrating this point than Cookie Connection’s January 2024 Watch-Learn-Create Challenge #56 guest, Noriko Forster of Cookie Crumbs by mintlemonade fame.

Known the world over for her meticulous piping and picture-perfect icing – not to mention her ultra-sophisticated color choices – Noriko Forster needs little introduction. She started her cookie art journey in 2012 when she happened upon a cookie decorating book in a shop in her hometown of Tokyo, Japan. She was so intrigued that she decided she would cover a store-bought cake with cookies for her elder daughter’s birthday to make the cake extra special for her. She did just that, and the rest is history. By 2016, Noriko was teaching six cookie decorating classes per month, all while raising two girls and working as a book editor. By 2023, her cookies had been featured twice in a calendar produced by a famous Japanese cosmetics company, three times in Cookie Connection’s coveted banner spot, and countless times in that same community’s Saturday Spotlights and challenges. Today, Noriko is arguably one of Japan’s finest cookie decorating instructors, having taught an estimated 1,000 students through her series of in-person, hands-on classes. It goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway: Challenge host Manu Pezzopane and I are absolutely overjoyed to have this world-class cookie artist as our guest this month.

In her kickoff demo for this challenge, Noriko demonstrates three very unique ruffle borders that employ some unexpected pastry tips and a novel combination of both piping and brush embroidery techniques. At the conclusion of the demo, Noriko and Manu encourage viewers to create cookies of their own for Challenge #56 by replicating Noriko’s ruffle borders and by creating brand-new ones using Noriko’s approach.

In addition to stretching cookie skills through this challenge, entrants have the opportunity to win one of two randomly drawn prizes, including free access to a past Cookie Connection Challenge video and Noriko’s digital workbook about embroidery-style piping! Just imagine winning this extra gift of learning from Noriko! For more information about challenge rules and how to enter, please visit the kickoff post on Cookie Connection. I hope to see some gorgeous ruffle borders from you! Remember, the more times you enter, the greater your chances of winning one of these terrific prizes! Though the biggest reward will most certainly be the skills you take away from this experience.

UPDATE, March 24, 2024: This challenge has closed, but you can still learn from Noriko’s challenge video by purchasing it in this site’s “Guest Series” section under “TUTORIALS”. You’re also sure to be impressed and inspired by all of the beautifully bordered cookie entries in the recap post on Cookie Connection. Please check it out!