Tutorial: Frankenstein and Skull Sugar Cookies

Halloween is coming! So, I will be showing you how to make a Frankenstein and Skull face cookie. They are both pretty easy, and don't use that much colors, so you should be able to make these really quickly. It only took me about 1 hour active time, and that includes the baking.

So first off by making your sugar cookie dough, and baking these shapes. They could be the same skull cutter. I had two cutters, but noticed the skull cutter could be made into a Frankenstein too.
This is the sugar cookie recipe I use and my favorite royal icing.


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 salt
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 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:
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.
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.
After the cookies have cooled, make the royal icing. You will need 3 colors only - Yay! You will need black, white, and a yellow-green.

Start off by piping Frankenstein's face shape. While the green is still wet, pipe a black scar across his forehead.

Allow that to set, I waited 30 minutes. Next, pipe his eyes. Pipe a white mound, and immediately pipe black, followed by white again. This is called wet-on-wet.

Wait 10 minutes, pipe the sides of his nose next. Wait another 10 minutes.

Pipe his actual nose now. Allow that to dry for 10 minutes or more.

Now pipe his eye brows and ears. Allow to dry for 30 minutes or more.

Pipe his hair and the nails on his neck. I piped in white, and painted in gray. But you can make gray icing - a 4th color. Allow to dry for 90 minutes or more.

Next, draw him a smile. Finish up his scar. Give him some eye brows. I used an edible pen to draw his brows, but you can also pipe black royal icing. And now he's done! Easy right?

Ok, now onto the skull. He was even easier!

First, thin some black icing, so you could paint onto the cookie with a brush. Allow 10 minutes to dry and pipe an outline of his face.

After the outline dries, about 1 hour for me, fill in his teeth.

Next, fill in his jaws. Allow to dry for 30 minutes.

Next fill is his face. Use a toothpick to push the icing into tight or small places. Then allow to dry for 90 minutes or more.

Finally, using the same green icing, give him some eyes. Use the wet on wet technique again. Optionally, you can have a small round cookie for an eye on the side. And now we're done! Easy!! =]

I hope you have fun with these shapes and designs!


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