June 30, 2019

sugar cookie with royal icing recipe

Hello there, I know it's been forever since I posted anything. LiFe..ya know! Summer, my favorite season, is here! I love the long daylight hours, the warm temperatures (okay hot..), pool time, ice cream, fourth of July festivities/fireworks, and my birthday! I've been in a baking mood here the past month or so and since I have never made 4th of July sugar cookies I decided to give it a go! Over the last five years or so I've been enjoying making sugar cookies and decorating them with royal icing. I finally feel like I've found and tweaked a sugar cookie recipe to get it just the way I like it. Not in any way am I a professional, but my icing technique has definitely come a long way over the years. This recipe is great because the cookies hold their shape really well when baking and taste delicious (coming from me, a person who really could care less about sugar cookies! ha, I'm a chocolate chip girl). I have had several people ask me for the cookie and icing recipes that I use so I thought I'd share them here! Enjoy!

Sugar Cookie Recipe
2 cups of softened butter (salted or unsalted, I use whatever I have on hand)
1 1/2 cups of granulated white sugar
2 tsp good vanilla extract
1 tsp butter extract
4 large egg yolks
4 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
Directions: Cream together butter and sugar. Add vanilla and butter extracts and egg yolks and mix until just incorporated - do not overmix. Slowly add flour and mix until soft dough forms - again, do not overmix. Separate dough into 2 equal portioned sized balls and place each ball in between 2 large sheets of wax paper. Using rolling pin, while dough is between wax paper sheets, roll out to about 1/4 inch thickness. Leaving between wax paper sheets, transfer both rolled out portions of cookie dough to the refrigerator using a flat cookie sheet or large cutting board and leave in the refrigerator for a minimum of 30 minutes to chill. Once the dough is hard, remove from fridge and cut out cookie shapes with your cookie cutters and place on parchment paper lined cookie sheets. (I have had success tracing my cookie shapes and cutting with a knife as well) After cookies are cut out, place baking sheet back in the fridge and chill about 10 more minutes. Form dough scraps back into a ball, roll out, refrigerate, and repeat the process until all dough is used. Bake the cookies at 350 degrees F for 10-13 minutes. Let cookies sit on the sheet until semi-cool, then transfer to counter or cooling rack. For soft, chewy cookies do not let the edges brown in the oven. Best to take them out before they get to that point, they will continue to cook for a bit sitting on the hot cookie sheet.

Royal Icing Recipe
*this is just the recipe from the back of the Wilton Meringue Powder container*
*I usually double this recipe because I like to have lots of icing to work with*
3 TBSP Wilton Meringue Powder
4 cups of sifted (I don't actually sift,I just spoon into my measuring cup) confectioners' sugar (Powdered Sugar)
5 TBSP warm water
Directions: In a large bowl, beat all ingredients at medium speed of stand mixer until icing forms peaks and loses its sheen 7-10 minutes. (will take longer if you're using a handheld mixer).
My method after mixing: After mixing I separate into small glass or metal (do not use plastic, any tiny bit of grease will ruin your royal icing) bowls in the number of icing colors I'm going to make. Cover bowls you're not working on at the moment with a damp paper towel to prevent icing from drying out. For piping consistency, slowly add water (about 1/4 tsp at a time) until the consistency is about that of toothpaste. Then add your coloring. I use Americolor Soft Gel Paste. For flood consistency add water until when you dribble some icing off of a spoon into the bowl the icing lines disappear in 6-8 seconds. If I am making piping and flood icing in the same color I start with the pipe consistency, separate some off into a decorating bag, then continue to water down until I reach the flood consistency.

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