Published on September 26th, 2010 by Clarabella
Decorated Sugar Cookies
The September 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Mandy of “What the Fruitcake?!” Mandy challenged everyone to make Decorated Sugar Cookies based on recipes from Peggy Porschen and The Joy of Baking.
So my kitchen looked like this when I started (below). This is the result of cooking/baking 3 different things at the same time. My sugar cookies and their icing, sushi for dinner and roasted banana ice cream (my first test of my new ice-cream bowl for the trusty kitchen-aid). Now I’m as good at multi-tasking as any other capable woman, but I only have so much counter space in my little kitchen, so I can;t say it wasn’t challenging. But I guess that is just perfect for a daring bakers challenge hey 🙂
I really enjoyed this challenge. I honestly don’t remember the last time that I make biscuits with cookie cutters. The rolling and cutting and rolling and cutting of the dough had a very soothing effect on me and I just let my hands do the work and then let my mind wander away – back to the cool, tree-shadowed paths of my morning run. A peaceful place. With just the sounds of the runners feet on the damp soil and our heavy breathing; the cool air chilling our lungs and our sweat-soaked shirts… sorry, I digress. Back to the biscuits.
The biscuit recipe itself was beautifully simple and the only change I made was to add almond essence to it instead of vanilla. I have a weakness for anything reminiscent of marzipan, macaroons and amaretto, so the almond vanilla substitute was a no-brainer. I did find the all rolling, chilling, cutting, chilling steps rather time consuming but with the amount of butter in these biscuits they do need all the help they can get to stay together once faced with the onslaught of heat from my rather zealous fan-oven, so the work was worth it.
The icing was whipped up in no time with my trusty kitchen aid and I was very careful to keep it covered up to prevent it from drying out and turning into sugar-cement as it certainly is prone to do if neglected even if for only a few minutes. I enjoyed trying out my new food-colouring gels in the icing and they certainly are as powerful as I’d hoped. Except for the red that is. My poppy red is rather orangey-inkish so I’m still in the market for a proper bright red, so the hunt continues.
The icing of the biscuits was messy and great. I honestly felt like a kid again dripping multi-coloured icings all over the place. I was in a little bit of a rush by the time I came to doing the icing and the neighbours had dropped round for a drink and were watching my icing sugar covered creations with much amusement, so I was not as careful or artistic as I could have been given a few more hours, but I was fun and the biscuits taste great, so who’s going to complain?
I look forward to the next challenge and hope it will be something incredibly different that I’d never done before. I’m feeling up for a challenge at the moment!