Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Decorated Cookies

I view my cookies as little edible pieces of art!  Let me start by saying, I do not like to bake or cook, but I LOVE to decorate food!  My husband is the cook in our family.  He is an award winning cook, as a matter of fact.  He used to cook in bar-b-que cook offs all of the time.  He would cook it, and I would present it.  I cut bell peppers to look like palm trees, or radish roses...etc.  What a team!

So that being said, when I first started my cookie decorating, I would get refrigerated dough from the grocery store, and add lots of flour, then kneed the heck out of it!  They tasted to store bought to me, so I tried adding powdered sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg...but still didn't like it.  After years (and I am not kidding) of research and development, I have discovered the best knock of cookie ever!  I like my cookies to be very stiff for decorating.  I don't want them to fall apart, or rise and spread so you can't tell what the shape is.  In my unprofessional opinion, this requires a lot of flour.  To make the perfect decorator cookie, I use Krusteez sugar cookie mix as follows:

1 stick of margarine softened
2 1/2 cups of Krusteez Cookie Mix
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 egg

You will have to knead this with your hands.  I roll mine out to be about 1/4" thick and then cut with my favorite shape.  I flour EVERYTHING!!!  The surface I roll on, the rolling pin, and the cookie sheet.  I watch mine closely, (every oven is different) but they take about 9 minutes at 375 degrees.

After they are completely cooled, you can decorate.  I use 2 cups of powdered sugar and 2 Tbsp of milk.  I color the icing with Wilton paste food coloring.  This doesn't dilute and you get vibrant colors.  I usually buy icing bags at Michael's made by Wilton, but on the Halloween cookies shown, I used nothing but a zip lock back, and cut a tiny piece out of the corner.  To ice the solid base color, draw a line around the cookie and then fill in.  The icing sort of flows into itself and covers very well.  Everything I do is just sort of hand drawn, so your imagination is the key to a bright decorative cookie.  Here are some of mine.

Happy Baking!
Nee' Nee'

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