Mrs. Regueiro's Plate: Sugar Cookies w/Royal Icing

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Sugar Cookies w/Royal Icing

"It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas" has been running in my mind these past 2 weeks. I've been on a mad baking operation these past 2 weeks, and it's been all about the cookies lately. I think my kitchen assembly line for cookies was pretty efficient. Day 1: Prep cookies and bake. Prep colored royal icings. Day 2: DECORATE! After baking & decorating these sugar cookies, I realized that I love chocolate and other cookies more. These cookies are VERY time consuming, but the best sugar cookies as well. I've had this bookmarked from Ashlee from A Year in The Kitchen FOREVER, and I knew her recipe was the best because Katie from Good Things Catered uses this cookie recipe for all their fabulous cookies. I envy these girls because they make it look so simple and perfect, like better than store-bought cookies! But I figured if they can do it, so can I. I was determined to be in the holiday spirt with my sugar cookies!

This was also my first attempt at making sugar cookies & decorating with royal icing. I bought myself all the proper tools with my Michael's coupons. I bought a couple cute holiday cookie cutters - candy cane, snowflake, star, Christmas tree & gingerbread man. For the royal icing treatment, I bought the Wilton meringue powder because I didn't feel like using egg whites to ice up my tasty cookies. I also stocked up on some Wilton gel pastes in colors of Christmas red, Christmas Green, and the basics of yellow, black & sky blue. I highly recommend using Wilton gel pastes vs. food coloring, it really does give that vibrant high quality color that you are looking for. I also prepped a self-guide on what colors I would be using and on what cookies. Yellow to the stars, red for gingerbread man, green for trees, and so forth. You'll also need to invest in the disposable pastry bags because it really does help for your clean lines and flooding and icing...believe me! Ziploc bags are not the equivalent!!! It also helps to prepare the icing the day before you decorate the cookies, it helps the color set. Most importantly, these are simply the best sugar cookies, I love the hint of lemon & almond that these cookies can't stop eating them. If you decide to venture and make these cookies, set aside some time, at least 2 days, and be ready to bake and conquer!

Ashlee's Famous Sugar Cookies
Adapted by Ashlee from A Year In the Kitchen & seen on Good Things Catered

1 1/2 cups butter
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1 tbsp. lemon zest
5 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
Powdered sugar, for rolling

1.Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Cream butter and sugars in a mixer for 5 minutes. Add in eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly. Add in vanilla, almond, and lemon zest. Sift in flour, baking powder, and salt a little at a time. Do not over mix, this process should take about one minute.
3. Chill dough for up to a week in the fridge, or roll out and cut right away.
*For these, I rolled the dough extra thin, placed on cookie on the sheet, pressed in the stick, and topped it with another*
4. Line a cookie sheet with silpat and bake cookies for 12 minutes.
5. Wait until cookies are cool before icing. I used the infamous royal icing.
Bake at 350's blog is very helpful, too. Please read her guide for flooding and icing really does help!

Review: Time-consuming, tiring, but overall a pretty darn sweet cookie. It might be awhile before I attempt to do this crazy baking adventure again, but I might have to enlist on help from my sister or a couple of girlfriends. Isn't this the prettiest cookie ever?
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