I was given the task of buying sugar cookies for my son's first grade class. Buy? Would Martha have bought cookies for her daughter's class? No. So I opted to bake my own and used Martha's recipe, of course. The kids will use these sugar cookies for their Valentine's Day party... where they will pile on mounds of store-bought canned frosting and toss on as many sprinkles and candies as the cookie will hold. I took the liberty of decorating a few myself- using Royal Icing instead.
If you don't own one of those little cake-decorating kits with the bags and the assortment of tips, I suggest that you buy one. A good little Wilton kit is only about $10 to $15, and you'd be amazed to find that it comes in handy once in a while. If you don't have a kit, you can make Royal Icing and spoon it into a plastic sandwich baggie- cut off the corner of the bag and you have a homemade piping bag. Then you can pipe the edge of the cookie- let it dry a bit- before you flood the middle with the remaining icing and spread it to cover the cookie. Fill other bags with different colors and add additional decor. Or dip a toothpick directly into the food coloring bottle and use the toothpick to swirl the designs that you desire.
Martha Stewart's Royal Icing is the recipe that I used. It's one of those hard icing recipes that many people are looking for when they make decorator cookies. This icing dries quickly and it dries hard- the cookies easily stack without ruining the decorations.
Now I'm sure there are plenty of Mom's out there that will pick up those store bought sugar cookies for their child's class and that's perfectly fine, and I'm sure that the kids will be perfectly happy and yadda, yadda, yadda... but these buttery cookies with a hint of vanilla just taste sooooooo much better!
Happy Valentine's Day !
The cookie recipe can be found HERE.
The icing recipe can be found HERE.