Chinese New Year's Cookies

Chinese New Years is this coming Monday, so I decided to make some sugar cookies with Chinese New Years royal icing designs. They were very fun to make! I tried piping dragons for 2012, but they looked silly.

The sugar cookie recipe is delicious! I loved the taste and texture. With 2 1/2 cups of butter, it better be delicious! I found the recipe from sweetopia.

For the designs, I piped them on parchment paper. I placed the paper over a printout and traced the outline. I let them dry overnight before putting them on my cookies.



Ingredients:

2  1/2 cups butter (at room temperature)
2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
seeds from 1 vanilla bean (or 3 tsp vanilla)
5 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
Directions:
1. Cream the butter and sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer on low to medium speed.  (Use the paddle attachment).  Mix until thoroughly incorporated – for about one minute.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a plastic spatula and mix again for a few seconds more.
Over mixing the butter and sugar in this step will cause too much air to be incorporated into the dough.  If you’d like a light and fluffy cookie, that’s ideal, however the dough will spread more during baking; not ideal if you’d like the cookie to hold its shape.
2. Add eggs slowly and mix.  Scrape down the bowl with your spatula at least once and mix again.
3. Cut open your vanilla bean and scrape the seeds out.  Add to mixing bowl.  Alternatively, add liquid vanilla extract.  Stir briefly.
4. Sift your dry ingredients together.  (Flour, baking powder and salt).
5. Add all of the flour mixture to the bowl.  Place a large tea towel or two small tea towels between the edge of the bowl and the electric mixer so that the flour won’t escape.  Mix on low speed for 3o seconds.  Remove the tea towels and observe the dough mixing; when it clumps around the paddle attachment it’s ready.  It’s also important at this stage not to over mix the dough (the glutens in the flour develop and the dough can become tough).
6. Roll the dough out between 2 large pieces of parchment paper.  Place on a baking sheet and into the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour.
7. Roll out the dough further if you need to, and cut out cookie shapes.  Place on parchment paper-lined baking sheet.  Re-roll scraps and repeat.
8. Put cookie dough shapes back into the fridge for 10 minutes to 1 hour to chill again.  They will then hold their shape better when baked.
9. Preheat your oven to 350°F or 176°C.
10. Bake cookies for 8-12 minutes or until the edges become golden brown.  The baking time will depend on the size of your cookie.
11. Let cookies cool to room temperature and decorate!

Royal Icing:
Ingredients:
6 oz (3/4 cup) of warm water
5 Tablespoons Meringue Powder
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
2.25 lbs of powdered sugar
*** Note; if your meringue powder has no vanilla flavour (vanillin powder) in it, add a teaspoon of clear vanilla to this recipe.
 Directions:
In mixer bowl, pour in the warm water and the meringue powder. Mix it with a whisk by hand until it is frothy and thickened…about 30 seconds.
Add the cream of tartar and mix for 30 seconds more.
Pour in all the icing sugar at once and place the bowl on the mixer.
Using the paddle attachment on the LOWEST speed, mix slowly for a full 10 minutes. Icing will get thick and creamy.
Cover the bowl with a dampened tea-towel to prevent crusting and drying.
Tint with food colourings or thin the icing with small amounts of warm water to reach the desired consistency.

1 comments :

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February 3, 2012 at 11:37 PM

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