Dia de los Muertos-inspired Halloween Cookies

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I.E the result of craving something to paint and needing to bring treats to a Halloween party. These are simply plain (Marie/Vanilla Wine) biscuits sandwiched with bubblegum icing and topped with painted fondant decorations 🙂 

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You just fill, cut out fondant circles to size and adhere them to the cookies with a dab of water. Then add some little fondant flowers (daisies and ribbon roses) and attach with water. Then add your colours one by one!

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And voila! Super easy 🙂 I added some sprinkles, silver cachous and edible glitter gel too. I hope your halloween went well if you celebrated it! You could easily take this idea and turn it to whatever theme you have, it’s super simple if don’t have time to bake (hence the store-bought cookies) but want to decorate and make something your own 🙂

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Royal Iced Gingerbread Cookies

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Another part of my cookie decorating escapade….. And a lot of photos this time too.


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Again, if you have not tried royal icing decorating, you may find it quite amazing what it possible with such a thick and versatile icing.

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If you can spare the time to make the effort, then I encourage you to. And give them to people you want to impress!


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Here is the recipe! 😀

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Royal Iced Gingerbread Cookies
Ingredients:
Cookies:
100g butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp golden syrup
1 egg
1/2 tsp baking powder
1cup+ flour
Ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg
Icing:
3/4 cup-ish icing sugar
1 egg white
Food colouring

Instructions:
Soften the butter and beat with the sugar until soft and creamy. Mix in the egg and golden syrup too. In another bowl, mix together the baking powder and 1 cup of flour plus the spices to taste (but remember ginger is the star of the show), and then mix into the butter mixture. The mixture will form a soft dough, but if it’s too sticky then add a bit more flour. Chill at least 30 minutes until it’s firm enough to roll out.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line two baking trays.

So, then roll it out! Cut out all your fantastic shapes and transfer to the trays. Bake for about 15 minutes, until lightly golden and the cookies move when nudged slightly. Cool, and meanwhile you can make the icing.

Whip the egg white until soft peaks form, and then add most of the icing sugar and beat until stiff peaks form. You may need to add a bit more icing sugar if the icing isn’t quick thick enough (there are great tutorials online if you are feeling a bit unsure about this). Spoon into a piping bag (a small one) And pipe the outlines of the cookies as you wish. Let them dry, which should happen in about 15 minutes.

In the meantime, water down the icing slightly until thick enough to run and fill in the shapes. Divide and colour icing as pleased, and spoon into more piping bags. Pipe and make designs as you like, I’d suggest a quick search on cool ideas online. Or comment and I can try and explain 🙂 Let them dry and devour!

Makes about 30, mixed sizes, and they keep very well thanks to the icing.

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Chocolate Cardamom Sugar Cookies

Part of sugar cookie madness begins! Prepare to become addicted!

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Although you may be a little busy with Christmas of course…..

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It’s amazing what egg white, colour and icing sugar can do! And these ones are a simple chocolate sugar cookie with a touch of cardamom. I haven’t made a tutorial for the icing, so I suggest these ones here and here.

 

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They make perfect gifts, Christmas or not 🙂

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Chocolate Cardamom Sugar Cookies
Ingredients:
1&1/4 cups flour
2 Tbsp cocoa
1/2 tsp baking soda
3 Tbsp any sugar
Seeds of two cardamom pods/1/4 tsp ground cardamom
75g butter
1 egg
Icing:
1 egg white
3/4 cup-ish icing sugar
Food colouring (I used shades of pink)
Water or lemon juice

Also: piping bags, small ones you can make out of baking paper or ziplock bags

Instructions:
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and line two baking trays.

Mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, sugar and cardamom. Rub in the butter, then mix in the egg. The mixture will come together into a soft dough. If it’s too sticky to roll out, then add a bit more flour. Roll out and cut out all your wonderful shapes! Transfer to the tray and bake for about 15 minutes, until the cookies move when nudged slightly. Cool, and get ready to ice!

Whisk the egg white until soft peaks, then add in most of the icing sugar and whip till roughly stiff peaks form. More icing sugar may be needed if the icing won’t whip thick enough. Spoon into a little piping bag and pipe the outlines of the shapes. They will set in about 20 minutes, so you can get onto the next bit.
Now water down the icing a bit with water or lemon juice, until not runny but thick enough to spread nicely when piped (Google ‘flooding technique’ with royal icing, there are some great tutorials out there). Divide into as many amounts you can be bothered to use and colour them different colours. Pipe away! Then leave for at least 6 hours to set.

Note: I used a toothpick to drag the icing stripes I piped to create the ripple effect.

Makes about 30 (various sizes). They keep very well for at least a few days, and the icing helps to keep the cookies crisp.

Enjoy 🙂
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‘Artsy’ Cupcake Decorations AKA How to Use Up Leftover Royal Icing!

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Just a cupcake decorating idea 🙂 I had lots of leftover coloured royal icing, so I made swirls and squiggles (plus some candy dots) on baking paper and let them dry over night. They are good to have on hand when you have some last minute baking and decorating to do, and are easy-as to make!

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They look really good on white icing/frosting (these cupcakes are banana, made with gluten free flour).

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I have more cupcakes and cakes to post soon, plus some recipes!
Have a good week everyone xx

Tetris Cookies (Hand-Cut….)

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They aren’t perfect; they were a quick make before a party. But they are fun 🙂
I ramble so much in this recipe! There isn’t really anything special about them though, I just got very carried away. Even if they aren’t your cup of tea then I hope they made you smile!

Tetris Cookies
Ingredients:
Cookies:
250g flour
50g cocoa
½ tsp baking soda
55g brown sugar
45g white sugar
120g butter, softened
30mls approx. milk
Icing:
150g icing sugar
10g butter
20mls approx. hot water
Food colouring
A bit of cocoa

Instructions:
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Line or grease two baking trays.
In a food processor, pulse the flour, cocoa, baking soda and sugars until combined. Add the butter, cut into cubes, to the mix and pulse until the butter has been cut in; so that it is distributed evenly and resembles bread crumbs. Add about half the milk and pulse again, then tip out onto a clean surface. Gently bring the dough together, adding more milk if necessary until it is smooth and not crumbly. Be careful not to over work it! You are now ready to work your magic.
Flour the surface (and rolling pin) you will be using. Roll out the dough until it is about 4mm thick. With a knife, cut out tetris shaped cookies. I just did mine from memory and didn’t really worry about making the right size. My slightly perfectionist side will never forgive me, but I was running late! If you actually have cookie cutters in the right shapes, then go you! Your life will be much easier. If not, don’t worry, a butter knife and some patience will do the trick. Transfer the cookies onto the baking trays and bake for about 20 mins, until the cookies move when lightly nudged. You may have to re-use the trays depending on how big they are, and so bake the cookies in batches. When baked, leave them to cool in wire racks.
To ice, pop the icing sugar into a large bowl. In another small bowl or teacup, melt the butter into the hot water (you may have to microwave it for a few seconds to help). Tip into the icing sugar and mix. You may have to add a little more water to reach a thin but not too runny consistency, so that the icing will stay on the cookies and not run off the sides. If you add too much water, just add a little more icing sugar to even it out. Divide into four equal parts and colour each one your desired colour (I did blue, yellow, pink/red and green). Using a butter or palette knife, ice the cookies. You may want to sort them out into groups if you are wanting to have an even amount of each shape in each colour. Leave these to dry, and while this is happening, add a bit of cocoa to the leftover icing (there should be at least a little; sorry if you were planning on eating the stuff left). You may need to add a bit of water too, and mix, until this enough to pipe but not too runny. Spoon into a small baking paper piping bag or snap lock bag and pipe ‘outlines’ of the squares onto the cookies. Leave to set and you’re done!
Makes about… 50 cookies!

——-don’t be afraid of the long recipe. I ramble.

Feather Iced-Cookies

Haven’t been keeping the blog as a priority at the moment, I figured it was time for a pretty (well, -ish) post to make up for it.
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I’m really sorry, but I do not actually have time at the moment to post the recipe for the cookies themselves (I know, how poor of me!) but I promise to sometime 🙂 It’s a really simple and easy way to jazz up your plain cookies and they do look great.

Feather Iced-Cookies

20 plain cookies

Icing:
1 cup icing sugar
50 g butter
1 Tbsp icing sugar
1 tsp water
pink food colouring

Instructions:

Melt the butter and place in a small bowl with the icing sugar. The icing sugar should be a runny consistency, so more butter may need to be added. Colour the icing pink. Mix together the extra icing sugar and water and spoon into a small piping bag. Place the good side of the cookie facing the top of the prongs of the fork. Dip the fork into the icing so that the icing covers all but the bottom of the cookie. Take out the fork and flip the cookie onto a wire wrack so the un-iced side is facing down. Pipe stripes of the white icing onto the cookie and using a tooth pick, drag it across the cookie, at a right angle to the lines. Drag the tooth pick across the other direction, but down the cookie slightly. Do this 2 or 3 more times. Continue with the other cookies and leave them to set. Serve or store in an air tight container in the fridge.

Makes 20

Lasts 2 days

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I
 went for pink colouring, but you can of course do whatever colour takes your fancy!
Have a good day all 🙂

Little Gingerbread Men

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Actually, they’re tiny, which only makes them more adorable 🙂 I have been a bit slack on the posting and baking more recently so this a recipe from few years ago I wanted to share. Gingerbread men are heaps of fun and whilst they may seem a little fiddly, making them tiny just means you get heaps more of them, (at least!) twice the fun! Decorate however and with whatever you like. Anyway, I’ll shut up and give you the recipe.

Little Gingerbread Men

50g butter

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 a beaten egg

5 Tbsp golden syrup

1&1/2 cups flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1&1/2 ginger

1/2 tsp cinnamon

Icing:

1/2 cup icing sugar

3 tsp butter, melted

1 Tbsp hot water+

Food colouring

To decorate:

Rainbow chocolate chips

Coloured sugar

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease the 2 cookie trays.

Soften the butter and beat with the sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and golden syrup.

Sift the flour, baking soda, ginger and cinnamon. Add a bit at a time to the butter mixture until you have a dough. Wrap the dough in cling film and refrigerate for a hour minimum.

Roll the dough out a floured surface until  4mm thick. Cut out mini gingerbread men with a mini ginger bread men cookie cutter. Transfer to the tray and reroll the rest of the dough.  Bake for 5 minutes until golden. Remove from the oven and cool completely.

Mix the icing sugar, butter and hot water together until smooth. Add a bit more water if necessary. Spread or pipe onto the cookies and decorate. Leave for the icing to dry. Store in an airtight container

Makes 40

Lasts for 6 days

Pastel Iced Cookies

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Fun fact: you are all capable of making and decorating adorable cookies. I used to think it was just for the professionals like Peggy Porschen but fear not, for those with a kitchen;can. It’s been a while since I’ve made these, so I’ll have to get back into them, but there is a recipe from a few years ago (5 actually, time flies….!) for cookies I have as a present for a new mother. If this is not a suitable theme for your cookies, simply change the colours 🙂 Remember that the colours sometimes fade slightly when the icing dries, so make it a little darker than you intend. I just used vanilla butter cookies for the base but you could add some lemon zest or substitute some flour for cocoa if you want to alter the flavour.
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For some reason that photo is slightly blurry…. but you get the idea. Anyway, have a go at them, even if they’re not for a gift and are just for fun!

Pastel Iced Sugar Cookies

100g butter

½ cup sugar

¼ cup icing sugar

2 tsp vanilla essence

1 egg yolk

1&1/2 cups flour

1tsp baking powder

Pinch of salt

Royal icing:

1 egg white

1&1/2 cups icing sugar

Food colouring

Hot water

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease 2 cookie trays.

Soften the butter and beat with the sugars and vanilla essence until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolk. Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Slowly add to the creamed butter mixture until the dough forms clumps. Pour the extra flour and dough onto a floured surface and knead until the mixture forms a smooth dough. Roll the dough until it is 6mm thick. Cut out shaped with a small heart and a small star cookie cutter. Transfer the shapes onto the cookie tray. Gather up the remaining dough and roll into a ball. Roll out until 6mm thin. Repeat the cutting process until there is no or a small amount of dough left. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes. Unstick the cookies from the tray and place on a cooling rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container until ready to ice.

Beat the egg white until stiff peaks form. Add the sugar a bit at a time, beating well after each addition. When combined, divide into 3 even portions. Colour one portion baby pink, one baby blue and one lemon yellow. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of each colour into a separate baking paper piping bag. Snip the ends of the piping bags and pipe outlines around the cookies. When the outlines have dried, add a bit of hot water to the royal icing to make it a bit runnier. Spoon into more paper piping bags and pipe the icing inside of the outlines, using the flooding technique. If necessary, use a toothpick to drag the icing into the corners. Then decorate with different colour icings, making different patterns such as dots and stripes. Leave the cookies until the icing has dried. Store in an airtight container.

Here are some slightly less professional ones used as a birthday gift a few years ago:
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The flowers are ones that I had actually made before hand, I piped them onto greaseproof paper to store them, and them stuck them on top of the dried flooded icing, which is an option too. Not very spectacular this batch but it’s just to give you an idea 🙂