Friday, August 6, 2010

Summer Sugar Cookies

I've always typically reserved making sugar cookies for Christmastime.  However, I received some adorable ice cream cone and lollipop cookie cutters for my birthday in July and just had to try them.  I also have wanted to try being more fancy with decorating cookies and so here is my first attempt at that. It was fun with a little frustration mixed in and just took a lot longer than I thought it would.

I used the Martha Stewart sugar cookie recipe and as suggested, I shaped them into discs, wrapped them in plastic and I ended up chilling them overnight.  This whole process actually took me three days (evenings). One evening I made the dough, the next day I cut them and baked them and the next I made the icing and decorated them.

The cookie cutters had little indents for the details and weren't the easiest to cut out (I used lots of flour).  I put them on the silpat lined baking sheets and chilled them for about 10 minutes in the freezer.  I've skipped this step in the past, but I know it does help them to keep their shape when you bake them.

Here are the baked sugar cookies.  They were so pretty at this point with their detail.  Such innocent little sugar cookies that weren't yet globbed with icing.  They tasted pretty good just like this too, especially since I made them nice and thick.

Speaking of royal icing was thick.  I always grew up making the simple and syrupy royal icing with just powdered sugar and milk.  I probably just added way too much milk than necessary. This time, since I wanted to pipe detail on the cookies, I used the royal icing recipe from the Bake at 350 blog. This royal icing has meringue powder and corn syrup in it, which I'm assuming helps it hold its own for piping. She had great descriptive directions, but I think I may have overbeat it or something as it was quite thick.  It ended up working out, but when I piped the border on my cookies some of them started to meringue.

I got myself all set up...bowls of icing to make different colors, spoons and spatulas to stir, cookies lined up on sheets of parchment, food coloring and my iPad with some sites that had ice cream cookie decorating inspiration.

My icing was finally all colored to my satisfaction. I used AmeriColor Ivory for the vanilla ice cream, Americolor Warm Brown and Copper for the ice cream cone, AmeriColor Warm Brown for the chocolate ice cream and AmeriColor dusty pink for the pink dots and drips.

I found these squeeze bottles at Crate & Barrel and they are so handy for pushing through all the icing in the bottle and are easy to hold onto.  I used these for piping on the edging. I also have a few plain tall squeeze bottles that I used for the flood icing (to fill in the middle of the cookies).

The first step was to to outline the edges of the cookies with each color and then I thinned out each of the colors and filled them in.  At this point I realized that I had a) picked a rather difficult shape for my cookie decorating trial; b) baked way too many and I was determined to decorate them all and c) I was tired, but just had to finish the project as this was the third evening I was working on this.

I did just some plain sprinkles on some of them after I filled in the ice cream.

When I used the pink icing, I started doing some dots and cherry drips on top.  I also used the leftover ivory to make a "waffle" pattern on the cone. If you may have noticed, I don't have any photos of finished lollipops.  I did decorate the sticks with the same icing I used for the cones and then I did yellow lollipops with a pink swirl.  However, the swirl looked like more of a sloppy smear, so I chose not to share those, aside from my belly.

I definitely learned a lot and I think I'll try this again...maybe at Christmastime. I don't think I'm going to try to tackle Santa though. I'll plan to stick with stars, snowmen and Christmas trees.


  1. Can I have your sugar cookie receipe? I'm a huge fan of frosted cookies and I'd love to give these a try.

  2. I've tried several different recipes, but I used the Martha Stewart one this time and when I cut them nice and thick they held their shape good yet stayed a little chewy and not rock hard. I used it from her cookies book, but here is the version I found online: