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Posts Tagged ‘Valentine’s Day’

These are my signature Valentine’s Day cookies, but making them tends to be a love-hate type of situation for me. I love that decorating theses cookies brings out my inner Picasso, but because they require so much time and patience, I hate making them. I say “hate” lightly, though. I admit working with the icing can be challenging, but it is also therapeutic. Even though the cookies in the photo are all of the same design, I enjoy experimenting with the flow of the icing and creating new designs. No two are ever exactly the same and after sitting at my kitchen table for hours straight on end, they are always a labor of love.

This type of project is always more fun when shared with others. What about this? Why not host a Valentine’s Day cookie-decorating party for your friends? If you don’t feel like baking, order undecorated sugar cookies from your local bakery or grocery store’s bakery. The fun will be in the decorating and the time spent with friends.

Shortbread Valentine’s Day Cookies:
(Original recipe is from Martha Stewart)

1-1/2 C unsalted butter, softened
¾ C sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 C unbleached all-purpose flour
1 C cornstarch
Icing recipe below

Cream together the butter and sugar in a large bowl. Stir in the vanilla.

Sift together the flour and cornstarch and then stir this into the creamed mixture. Place the dough on a sheet of plastic wrap and form the dough into a round disc. Wrap the dough and chill it for at least 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line the baking sheets with parchment paper. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface and cut out heart shapes with a cookie cutter. Bake for 5-8 minutes. These cookies remain a pale color. Carefully remove from baking sheets and cool on racks. Spread on icing and let icing dry until shell forms. Store in an airtight container.

Makes about four dozen cookies.

Icing:
3-1/2 C confectioners’ sugar, sifted
3 large egg whites, lightly beaten
½ tsp fresh lemon juice
Food coloring (I use Wilton’s gel icing colors)

In a medium bowl, combine the confectioners’ sugar, egg whites, and lemon juice. Blend until smooth.

Divide icing into small bowls. Add food colors. Blend the colors thoroughly. Make in small batches as necessary. Apply icing to cookies using small brushes. Stir individual bowls occasionally to prevent icing from hardening.

Makes enough for four dozen cookies.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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