|A web of sugar cookie deliciousness.|
I volunteered to provide the cookies for Serenity's class party last week. Liv always rolls her eyes at me when I take on these challenges because I always find the hardest way possible to do things. Most moms run by the store and grab a box of cookies on sale for $2.99 from my bakery table. I on the other hand pause life, stop the rotation of the Earth and dive head first into a budget busting bonanza. I admit I go a little over the top. This year I decided to use the cookie cutters salvaged from last year's clearance rack. I made rolled sugar cookies and baked my ghosts, pumpkins, cats, bats and witches. The icing was the tricky decision because I am much more a fan of buttercream icing than the traditional royal. However for this project I opted to give it a go with the run-in technique. The trick to this is patience. My dilemma, I lack this particular character trait. First step is to make a great base to work on.
After the cookies have completely cooled you can make a batch of royal icing. Set some of this thicker base aside to be the outline and finishing touches of your masterpiece. Outline with this royal icing each cookie design, be sure to leave a little room on the edge. Testing the patience again, let this thoroughly dry. Once it's completely dry you're ready to move on to the "flooding". The rest of the icing you are going to slowly add warm water to (a few drops at a time). It is ready for the cookie when the drizzles settle for a second on top before disappearing into the mix. Add your colors and carefully glaze your cookie. I use a pastry bag but a ziplock bag with a tiny hole in the corner or a spoon will do the trick. Fill in the middle of the cookie. (Here's a hint: a clean toothpick to push the bits of frosting into the corners is helpful.) If you are using multiple color on the same cookie you must wait for each color to dry separately. Again with the saintly patience, Let this completely dry. One it had hardened you can use the thicker batch of royal icing to add your finer details to give each cookie a distinct personality. Once they dry you'll be tired but proud of this fun accomplishment. The kids , and their teachers will love this yummy accomplishment.
|Pumpkin Sugar Cookies.|
- Sugar Cookie Recipe
* 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
* 2 cups white sugar
* 4 eggs
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 5 cups all-purpose flour
* 2 teaspoons baking powder
* 1 teaspoon salt
1. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).
2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Roll out dough on floured surface 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets.
3. Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.
|Bats and Ghosts Cookies|
- Royal Icing Recipe
4 cups (440 grams) confectioners' (powdered or icing) sugar
3 tablespoons (30 grams) meringue powder
1/2 teaspoon extract (vanilla, lemon, almond)
1/2 - 3/4 cup (120 - 180 ml) warm water
For Royal Icing with Meringue Powder: In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the confectioners' sugar and meringue powder until combined. Add the water and beat on medium to high speed until very glossy and stiff peaks form (5 to 7 minutes). If necessary, to get the right consistency, add more powdered sugar or water. To cover or 'flood' the entire surface of the cookie with icing, the proper consistency is when you lift the beater, the ribbon of icing that falls back into the bowl remains on the surface of the icing for a few seconds before disappearing.
The icing needs to be used immediately or transferred to an airtight container as royal icing hardens when exposed to air. Cover with plastic wrap when not in use.
Makes about 3 cups