Hey! Welcome to my first blog post………
I’ve been doing quite a few tutorials for the online Cake Minds magazine recently, so I thought it would be fun to share them with you here, in case you haven’t had a chance to read them in the magazine.
I’ve been making cookies for a while now, and have tried lots of recipes – I wanted a crisp cookie, that tasted really buttery and of vanilla, but didn’t spread in the oven! Having a no spread cookie is crucial when making cookies! I’ve included my recipe below.
- 450 g plain flour
- 230 g block butter at room temperature
- 200 g caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Cream butter and sugar together in a stand mixer with the paddle attachment until pale and fluffy. Gradually add the egg and vanilla. Add the flour in 2 batches with your mixer on low, scraping down the bowl between batches. The dough should come together to form a ball of cookie dough. This will make around 14-15 large cookies.
- Cut 4 large pieces of baking paper. Split the dough into 2 large balls on top of 2 of the pieces of baking paper. Place the other pieces of baking paper on top. Use a rolling pin (I use a Joseph Joseph one with spacers to get an even thickness of dough), to roll out your dough between the 2 pieces of baking paper. Please your dough on a tray and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
- Preheat your oven to 180 degrees C.
- Remove the dough from the fridge and cut out your cookies. Place your cut cookies onto baking paper on a baking tray and put back into the fridge for 30 mins.
- Remove from the fridge and immediately place in your pre-heated oven for 12-15 mins.
I’ve decorated cookies with royal icing and fondant icing – I am still perfecting my techniques for using royal icing to decorate my cookies – I find getting the right consistency quite tricky. I’ve been using fondant/sugar paste for making cupcake toppers for years (its where I first started my cake decorating journey), so I am much more at home with using fondant/sugarpaste rather than royal icing. So for our nurse cookies we will be decorating with sugar paste.
There are a whole host of cookie cutters, stamps and embossers out there – but you don’t need to spend a fortune on cookie cutters – sometimes you can adapt ones you already have and turn them into a shape that will work for your theme.
I used the following cutters to make my nurse appreciation cookies: heart, nurses face and syringe are all by Sweetsugarbelle (https://www.sweetsugarbelle.com). The rectangle cutter is by Cookies by Courtney (https://cookiesbycourtney.co.uk) and the t-shirt cutter is by Ann Clark (https://www.annclarkcookiecutters.com). I also used an embossing stamp by Cookiekut (https://cookiekut.com) to make the ‘Thank you NHS’ ones.
Nurses faces – step by step
Using the nurse face cookie cutter, cut a flesh coloured base. Use this to build onto for the hat, hair etc as shown. I used a square cutter to make the mask and cut it into three, and then using a stitching tool along the edge, and then overlapped the three pieces. I used a stiff consistency royal icing to pipe the ties for the mask and outline the hat. I then used edible ink pens to draw on the eyes and Red Cross on the hat. Finally I used edible pink food dust to give her rosy cheeks!
Nurses uniform – step by step
Cut out some blue sugar paste using the t-shirt cutter. Use a small square cutter to make the pockets and use the stitching tool again to add detail to the pockets. I then used stiff consistency black and white royal icing to pipe the stethoscope. I used a No 2 tip with the royal icing.
Syringe cookies – step by step
Cut a white base from sugar paste using the syringe shaped cutter. Then cut the detail out in red sugarpaste as shown. Add the scale detailing using stiff black royal icing and a No 2 piping tip.
You can make the sugar paste designs for your cookies in advance and leave them to harden. You can then bake the cookies when you need them and attach the sugar paste decoration with a little royal icing spread over the cookie. I then individually bag all of my cookies and heat seal them.
Have fun and happy baking! xx