The most basic things are the most comforting. And I don’t think there’s anything better than a butter cookie.
A buttery ,yummy cookie that melts into your mouth. Ever since I started baking my own cookies ,I cannot eat cookies that come out of a plastic baggie. I can eat french fries and chips and even crisps , but I am totally unable to eat cookies that come out of a plastic bag.
Ok ,ok that is made on an assembly line production is by far the most impossible cookie ever. I like mine to be same same but different they should be cut out of the same Cookie Cutter but they may be a wee bit different one maybe thicker than the other one maybe just an even and then there may be an other which is slightly poking to one side
And when you Frost these cookies with frosting they become so gorgeous that you don’t even want to eat them you just want to stare at them the whole day long
I love the royal icing frosting. I do not like fondant on cookies, they look pretty but the minute you bite into them cookies, the texture of the fondant changes… it becomes gummy and pasty. This is where the cookie loses its Christmas.
So anytime you want to eat a cookie make your own there’s nothing better.
The first time you make them it may seem as though it is not worth the effort but once you bake them and cool them and eat then you will realise how amazing these cookies really are.
Your best friend is that roll of parchment paper ,what it does is that it allows you to roll and re roll the cookie dough ,without altering the amount of flour in the dough.
So I always roll between two pieces of parchment paper. Even cling film will do. And recycle, reuse ….parchment paper can be used at least up to 7 times.
Golden rules of working with this butter cookie dough is COLD.
If the cookie dough starts to become warm ,stop rolling . Wrap up the dough and place in the fridge until it’s chilled again.
You can make these cookies up to 24 hours in advance and place them on a parchment paper in the fridge so you can roll them a day prior and bake them just before you need them.
When you start the butter must be at room temperature.
The dough should be soft and when you Roll It between parchment paper there should be no cracks.
Follow the exact proportion, because if you add too much butter, the cookies will spread and become like crackers and merge into one solid mess . If there is too less butter, then they will just not taste the way they should.
The cookies need to cool before you can dress them with royal icing. They are best consumed within 4-6 days and stored in an airtight container.
This recipe will give you 16 -18, 3 inch cookies, depending upon the size of the cutter you use. A wise decision would be to make the dough, divide into two parts wrap and freeze one and bake one lot of cookies.
Butter Cookies ￼￼
3 cups flour or maida
1 cup or 200 gms powdered sugar not icing sugar plus half cup extra
3/4 tsp baking powder
1 cup soft ( amul tastes the best) butter
1tsp vanilla essence
Pinch salt if you’re using unsalted butter
Cream the butter and add the one cup sugar till the sugar dissolves and the mixture is pale and fluffy.
Beat vanilla essence , the milk and the egg.
Now shift over the flour and baking powder and use the wooden spoon to bring the dough together.
Divide the cookie dough into 2 or 4 parts and wrap in cling film and chill for at least an hour before you use the dough.
Cut out parchment paper to fit cookie sheets. Place one part of dough in the centre and cover with a second sheet of parchment paper and roll gently till you get to half centimetre thickness everywhere. I measure with a ruler and prefer cookies that at 4 mm or 5 mm thick. Dip the Cookie Cutter in flour and cut out the desired shape. With the help of a spatula carefully lift off the cookie and place on another parchment paper .
Make sure the cookies are at least an inch away from each other. Once one tray filled place it in the fridge.
Roll off the remaining cookie dough and all scraps and reroll between two sheets of parchment paper again. Repeat until all your cookie dough is used up.
Before you bake the cookies preheat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade.
Just before sliding in the cookie tray Sift over some powdered sugar to dust each cookie.
This powdered sugar will caramelize slightly and ensure that the royal icing frosting will not make your cookie soggy. So please do not skip this step.
Bake one cookie tray at a time and for only 9 to 10 minutes.
The cookies maybe soft but on cooling on a wire rack they will become first and have the right texture.
Allow the cookies to cool and prepare your royal icing frosting.
Royal Icing Frosting
2 egg whites
One tablespoon lemon juice strained
3-4 cups of sifted icing sugar
Gel food colours of your choice I use Wilton and Amerigel
Cling film to cover the royal icing and small bowls and plenty of spoons to mix the colours into the royal icing
I prefer disposable piping bags for frosting cookies
Lightly beat the egg whites and add approximately half the lemon juice beating the egg whites to get a nice white colour.
Slowly beat in 3 cups of the sugar and beat in most of the remaining sugar to get a stiff consistency of royal icing.
Ensure that you don’t over beat the frosting or your icing will begin to dry out even before you use it.
You can add a few more drops of lemon juice if you feel that the icing is too stiff.
The lemon juice bleaches the royal icing to pure white from the grey that you started out with.
Cover the icing with cling film so that it does not come in contact with air.
Divide the icing into small balls and colour with gel Colors before you had any water to clean out the consistency of the royal icing .
The gold pain is edible lustre dust mixed with vodka and painted on freely.
Now, I have not received any formal training in baking or frosting or decorating cookies. But for frosting cookies I followed Julia Usher YouTube channel and learnt what kind of consistency is of royal icing are required to Frost a cookie.
Click on the link and Check out her channel her techniques are extremely informative and remember you cannot Frost spectacular cookies the first time.
It takes tremendous amount of patience and practice to get your cookie right.
I don’t do sugar cookies very regularly because they are loaded and calories but when I do then often my frosting looks much prettier and the best way to disguise any errors in royal icing frosting is to make small flowers or small roses over the mistakes you have made.
Or if you’re in a hurry or just plain lazy ,just dip them in melted chocolate and place them on parchment paper.
Make small batches and enjoy with tea, coffee and your favorite people for company.
Bake a cookie and frost it today.
The cookie may not be perfect, but the happiness will be perfect.