Monday, October 13, 2008
Halloween Sugar Cookies
Once again my love affair with cookie cutters has proven to be far superior to my ability to actually decorate cookies. I did however discover an awesome version of sugar cookies perfect for cutouts. I used the base recipe in the Cookie Craft book and substituted half a cup of maple sugar for a half a cup of the granulated sugar and used 1/2 tsp of maple extract creating a lovely maple cookie with a little bit of nubby texture from the maple sugar.
I was very ambitious with this whole project, baking dozens of cookies and using 6 different frosting colors in flood and piping variations. I quickly discovered though that the colors did not hold very true for the flood frostings, despite having the color mixed in while they were still in the mixer. So the red was a bit runny and faded looking here and there, and the black was downright pathetic, which was fine because my piping skills are pretty pathetic too. The poor piping skills combined with my lack of artistic ability (I seriously have issues drawing stick figures...) made for some rather... uh... interesting cookies.
Luckily, we still had some black fondant leftover from one of our cakes and Chris made some awesome looking silhouettes. The sad thing was that the silhouettes were really easy -- roll the fondant out thin, cut the fondant with a cookie cutter, brush a little water on the fondant and stick it on the cookie -- and they were gorgeous, especially compared to the royal icing versions.
Chris' fondant bat next to my rather confused looking royal icing bat:
Two devils, neither very good, but still better than than the female sex-doll version I managed to create...
Not quite sure how I ended up with an orange asian dude in a hat... it started out a frankenstein head, but I didn't make green frosting:
A trio of owls:
Chris' fondant cat:
The recipe for the maple cookies:
3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter softened
1/2 cup maple sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar (or 1 cup granulated if you don't have maple sugar)
1 large egg
1/2 tsp maple extract (or 2 tsps vanilla extract)
Whisk together the flour and salt and set aside.
In the bowl of a mixer, cream the butter and sugars together until light and fluffy. Add the egg and the extract and blend well. Add the flour and mix until it disappears.
Divide the dough in two and roll each piece out between two pieces of wax paper to 1/8 inch thick. Transfer the flat dough to the fridge and chill for at least 30 minutes.
Once the dough is chilled, cut your cookie shapes and bake at 350 -- the size of the cookies will determine the baking time, but somewhere between 8-12 minutes.
Once the cookies are cool you can decorate any way you want. :)
For the royal icing recipes check out this post.