Just a reminder that I’m having a giveaway on my giveaway blog until Wednesday, April 7, 2010 (closes midnight CST). Winner can be from US or Canada. Head on over and check it out and leave a comment to be entered for the random drawing.
But look at these cutest sugar cookies you’ll ever see first! I can bake like the best of them, my chocolate chip cookies, as well as other kinds, cakes, pies, brownies are all delicious, but one thing I’m not very good at is decorating things to look pretty/cute and fabulous. You’ll see an example of that on my post about our recent cheesecake throwdown. Dan walked in with an awesome looking white chocolate raspberry cheesecake. Mine, not so decked-out. (I did win the throwdown though!) Anyway, what I’m getting at is these hatching baby chick sugar cookies are so cute and so easy that even I could make them. So you can, too. Yeah, I WISH I was as good as some of my blogging pals, like Amanda or Leslie. But we can’t all be that good, now can we.
Super simple though, cut the cookies with an egg shaped cookie cutter. When cool, frost the top half with yellow icing, let it dry (my icing recipe dries really fast!). Add the little orange beak before the icing dries. I used some candy coated sunflower seeds I had. I’ve seen these done with orange icing and even what looked like cut up fruit leather. Once the yellow is dried, frost the other half with white icing. For the eyes, melt a little chocolate and put it in a plastic zipper bag with a little snip off the corner and pipe on the eyes. You could also use mini chocolate chips for the eyes. That’s it. Done and so cute.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. What’s up with the chick with the eye patch? You could just say while we were making these, we decided to make one for Dan! ;) No, really, while piping the eyes, I really made a mess of one, so Scott thought it would be fun to put an eye patch on it to cover it up. He just might be the cutest one. While making the cookies, I also cut out a bunch of flowers. I like making the icing runny enough that you can just dip the cookies. It dries shiny and smooth. Then I just piped some yellow in the center for the flowers.
Peep, Peep! Here’s my favorite sugar cookie recipe that I’ve been using for years and have never had troubles with it, even rolling it out immediately, no dough chilling time involved.
I'm Gonna Call These My Mom's Sugar Cookies
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks, or 8 oz.), softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon cream (I almost always use milk)
3 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cream the butter and sugar together. Add the vanilla, egg and cream (or milk). Beat until fluffy, scrape sides of bowl at least once. Add the dry ingredients until it comes together. Turn dough out on floured surface, knead it into a ball, just a few times. Do not over knead the dough. Making sure there is enough flour on your surface that it doesn't stick, roll out dough until desired thickness. I always do about 1/4 inch. Cut dough into shapes with cookie cutters. Laying on baking sheet lined with parchment paper, bake cookies at 400 degrees for 7-10 minutes (until desired doneness.)
Transfer to cooling rack. When cool, frost cookies.
The icing recipe I use is one I got from Allrecipes. I adapt it just about every time I make it. Sometimes I only use vanilla, and the amounts of milk and corn syrup I use always seem different, but there’s the main ingredients that I used for the chicks and flowers. These really were fun and easy!
My Favorite Sugar Cookie Icing, by Katrina Smith, Baking and Boys!
3 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespooons corn syrup
3 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
Beat with electric mixer, on slow at first, then beat on high for a couple minutes. Add more milk until the icing is the consistency you’d like. Sometimes I make it thicker (like for the chicks) and sometimes I thin it out (like for the flowers). It always dries nice and smooth, but not so hard like royal icing.
For April Fool’s Day yesterday, I didn’t do much, but the boys sure get a kick out of being pranked or being the pranksters. I hurried downstairs and woke the boys up in a huff, telling them to hurry as I’d slept in and school was about to start and we were late. I rushed them through getting dressed and kept them moving fast. They were confused and kept trying to tell me what time is really was. I assured them that I didn’t know why, but their clocks were wrong and it really was almost time for school to start. So they were rushing through trying to get dressed. Then Scott just stopped and said, “Wait a second, it’s April Fool’s Day! You’re joking.” Okay, well, it was fun for the minute it lasted. I didn’t really try to do anything else the rest of the day.
But for dinner last night, I decided to make the boys pancakes. We love having breakfast for dinner at least once a week. So just for kicks, I put some of the pancake batter into four bowls and colored it. They thought these were pretty cool.
Here’s the pancake recipe I almost always use.
Whole Wheat Pancakes, by Katrina Smith, Baking and Boys!
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups low-fat buttermilk
1 tablespoon canola oil (I actually forgot it with these and they were fine!)
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional, sometimes I put it in, sometimes I leave it out)
Combine the dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk together. In another bowl, combine buttermilk, oil and eggs and whisk together. Pour the liquid into the dry ingredients and stir until mixed together. Our desired size spoonfuls on heated griddle. Turn pancakes when tops are covered with bubbles and edges are beginning to look cooked.
*For the colored batter, I put some batter in four different bowls once it was combined and added different colors of food coloring to each and stirred it until combined. Serve with syrup (and the boys love peanut butter on their pancakes).