I had been planning to make cookies to give out for Valentine’s, and this recipe for sugar cut-out cookies from TheKitchn seem perfect. Unfortunately, this recipe doesn’t seem to like me. I mixed up the dough, and refrigerated it as instructed. After an hour, I rolled it out to start cutting shapes out. Or at least, I tried to. The darn thing kept sticking to everything! I’m sure I dusted everything with flour, but still.. Anyway I ran out of time, so I covered the dough in cling wrap, shoved it in the fridge, and waited for the next day.
The next day, I took it out of the fridge and tried again. It was too hard! I had to wait for it to soften up a bit, and by then, it was just the same as the last time! At this point, I just gritted my teeth. Instead of the rolling pin, I just used my palm to slap the dough flat. I used my really nice heart cutters to make batches of heart cookies, and some of my animal cutters to make one batch of bears, cats, bunnies, and butterflies.
Here’s a batch of hearts and animals cooling on the rack:
After cooling completely, I set about making the icing to decorate the cookies with (after trying out one or two of the more burnt cookies to check the taste). It isn’t my first time making icing (I made buttercream icing before), but it’s my first time making Royal icing. I followed this simple royal icing recipe from The Joy of Baking, which warned me that royal icing dries fast!
I set out to make a batch of icing, hoping that it will last for the entire batch of cookies. I halved the icing, and put a drop of red food color on one to make pink icing. The other half I left white, and that’s the one I started with. My improvised icing bag (which is just a plastic sandwich bag) didn’t like it very much, and the icing kept splattering around the piping tip. I wasn’t able to use the white icing very well, and iced only about ten cookies total. I wanted to cry!
I firmed up my heart and told myself that I have the pink icing still, and it was actually a bigger half than the white. I also have some nice colorful heart sprinkles, which will help me spread out the pink icing. I changed the crappy sandwich bag with another plastic bag supposedly for making ice. It actually made all the difference! Things went pretty well after that, and I finished all the cookies in no time. The icing dried fast primarily because the day was amazingly hot.
Here’s a representative of the cookies I made:
I especially liked the face on the white icing heart, because that’s exactly how I felt after I wasted most of the white icing. The bunny turned out cute too, especially with those sprinkles. My daughter loved the taste apparently, as she ate 3 or 4 of the smaller cookies straight! I haven’t tasted any of the iced ones yet, but the plain cookies were pretty interesting. I can clearly taste both the almond extract and the lemon zest.
Happy Valentine’s day, everyone!