Friday, June 24, 2011

Cut-Out Cookies

As of about 15 minutes ago I finished reading my latest book "The Help". Already the grieving process has started (if you read my last post, you'll understand).

Now I am just incredibly eager for the movie to come out...2 months from now...perhaps I should have waited to read the book...

But who am I kidding? Patience is not a trait I am familiar with.

You people who are patient are lucky...just saying.

I'm the kind of person who gets antsy when a person is 5 minutes late. By the 6th minute I have convinced myself that something horrible has happened to them...

I often check my school's web site shortly after I take an exam as I am dying to know how horrible I did so I have an excuse to indulge in chocolate gelato....

I paint my nails only to have them ruined in a matter of minutes because I decide that 17 seconds to dry is more than enough time....

And yes, I even watch a pot of lukewarm water and pray to the cooking God's to "hurry it up already! water should be boiling after 2 minutes! easily!"

I could learn a thing or two from you patient people.

This post may come as a shock to you all. Cut-out cookies are not for impatient people. And yes, I know this. But they make such darned good gifts that I can't help myself.

Another thing about me...I tend to think that I can somehow cheat the "time" system by holding my breath and squinting my eyes when I try to complete these tasks in which patience is vital. Such as cut-out cookies.

My cut-out cookies don't come out as pretty as the cake decorator at work (her patience baffles me!) While I find detail important, I also find it impossible to pay attention to.

A little tip for those of you who, like me, curse at the hairdryer every morning you are drying your hair (because "OH MY GOD" it takes too darn long)...if you pair your panic-inducing, time-consuming, detail-oriented activity with a freshly lit candle and a glass of riesling or sweet red wine, your experience shall consists of a little less jaw-clenching and a little more breathing (I can't imagine holding your breath is that good for you)...

And word on the street is a little red wine is. And some dark chocolate. Always allow for some dark chocolate.

Cut-Out Cookies



1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Royal Icing:
1/4 cup cold water
3 tablespoons meringue powder
2 cups confectioners' sugar
Food coloring, optional


In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy. Beat in eggs, vanilla and almond extract until combined.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add to sugar mixture, beating until smooth. Wrap dough in heavy-duty plastic wrap, and refrigerate 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut with assorted snowflake cookie cutters and place 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Chill dough 15 minutes. Bake for 10 minutes, or until edges are very lightly browned. Let cool for 2 minutes on baking sheet. Remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks.

Paint cookies with Edible Paint Icing. Garnish with silver dragees, sugar pearls and sparkling sugar, if desired.

Royal Icing:
In a medium bowl, combine water and meringue powder; whisk until foamy. Whisk in confectioners' sugar until smooth. Add food coloring, if desired. Use immediately.

NOTE: If you can't find meringue powder you can easily make royal icing by whipping egg whites, a touch of vanilla extract, and powdered sugar together until you get the right consistency (it should be thick, white and glossy). Just thin out that icing with a touch of water.

1 comment:

purabi naha said...

Interesting recipe, indeed! The shape is so sweet and the throw of colours is gorgeous!! Great!

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