Two very cute, and fun, books showed up recently and the boys were very excited. Especially as one of the books meant we’d be doing cookie decorating in real life.
The first book, Bake Shop: Create your own illustrated tasty treats with tantalizing scented markers and delectable stickers in one SWEET activity book! – Includes 6 … markers and 75 stickers!, is a total cutie. I won’t lie, it kept the boys busy doodling, coloring and designing I could bake cookies by myself 😉 (Yes, I said boys…my boys love all toys, even pink ones!) Did I mention scented markers? Stickers?
The second book, Cookie Decorating: Easy-to-follow recipes and decorating tips for sweet cookie creations – Includes frosting pen and cookie cutter! (Kids Craft Kit Series), is all about how to make gorgeous (yet achievable) cookies, and how to decorate them with a variety of methods. Now then, yes….this is aimed at children. It also is perfect for adults. The writing is great, easy to understand, with a lot of well shot photographs. The designs for the cookies included are perfect if you have parties and want to do highly decorated cookies (like run sugar icing, that makes a hard shell). These kind of cookies are expensive to buy, learning this will make me an all-star with my kids!
The book comes with an icing pen, heart cookie cutter, “made by” tags and a reusable frosting template, so you can learn how to do design work.
The cookies are a dream to cut out and bake – and they look perfect after baking! Without any leavening, the cookies don’t puff up. They have the thickness of a shortbread, but the light taste a sugar cookie has.
It was also incredibly easy to make. And popular. I barely had them cooled before all 3 boys were milling around me. I ended up letting them frost a few cookies each and off they went 😉
Buttery Sugar Cookies
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg (used 1½ tsp Ener-G Foods Egg Replacer + 2 Tbsp warm water instead)
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
Mix the butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer on medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes or until the butter and cream cheese are blended. Scrape the bowl. (I used a stand mixer)
Add the sugar. Continue to blend on medium speed until the mixture is light and fluffy. Mix in the vanilla.
Add the egg (or Ener-G as we did), mixing on low until thoroughly blended. Scrape the bowl.
Add the flour, 1 cup at a time. Scrape the bowl after adding each cup. Don not overt mix, or the dough will toughen.
Divide the dough into two equal portions. Flatten the dough into two patties that are approximately 1½” thick. Wrapt the patties with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at lest 2 hours until firm.
Preheat oven to 375°, line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Roll out the dough to ¼” thick (it is fine if it is thicker, you will just get less cookies). Cut out as desired. Carefully lift each cookie and place on a tray. As the cookies don’t spread, you can put them closer. Reroll the scraps and cut more out.
Bake for 9 to 13 minutes, until the edges are very lightly browned. (Thicker cookies will take the longest)
Let cool for 5 to 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
Decorate as desired once cool.
How many cookies? Well the book says 36, but I cut big cookies.
For the Buttercream Frosting recipe, see page 40 and on. The frosting is very, very good and takes colors well. It also stores for weeks in the refrigerator. The book covers Buttercream, Rolled Fondant, Run Sugar Icing and Royal Icing, along with how to paint cookies and so much more.
FTC Disclosure: We received a review copy of the book.