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Sunday, 13 December 2015

Twelve Days of Christmas - Snowman Sugar Cookies

snowman sugar cookies
snowman sugar cookies

" do you wanna build a snowman?"

Today's the start of this years Twelve Days of Christmas series and I couldn't be more excited! I've got 12 wonderfully festive posts to share with you all and it means we have only 12 sleeps to go until I'll be waking everyone up at 5.30am like the excited 5 year old I am.

Sugar cookie have always seemed so festive to me, while people make them all year round, for me they'll always be a festive treat, mainly for Halloween and Christmas. I thought what better way to kick off this series than with some seriously festive little snowmen, plus -they're so cute I couldn't wait!

These little biscuits are absolutely delicious, and far too easy to eat -seriously, we've eaten an embarrassing amount this week. They're sugary but not too sweet and are perfect with a glass of milk (or for leaving for Santa). Over the years I've tried a few different recipes, each with varying responses from friends and family but this one has had the best reviews of any I've made, and it's hands down my favourite too.

snowman sugar cookies
snowman sugar cookies
snowman sugar cookies

For the cookies I used Sally's recipe, that you can find here, but changed a couple of things. For the royal icing I used my own.

Ingredients: (for cookies)

170g of room temperature salted butter
150g of caster sugar
1 large egg at room temperature
2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
280g of plain flour
1/2 a teaspoon of baking powder

snowman sugar cookies
snowman sugar cookies

-In a bowl using either a hand or stand mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy, for around 1 minute. Add in your sugar - I add half, mix, then the other half, and mix until light and fluffy. Remembering as you go to always scrape down the sides of the bowl to make sure all the mixture is incorporated. Add in your egg and vanilla and beat for a further couple of minutes.

- Sieve your flour and baking powder into a separate bowl then add about half to your butter, egg and sugar mix. Once that's combined add the rest and mix until you have a soft dough, if the dough seems to soft for rolling or is sticky, add a tablespoon more flour.

- Divide your dough into two equal parts and roll each half onto a sheet of greaseproof paper, roll out the dough until you have a thickness of 1/4 of and inch. Place these sheets of dough and the greaseproof paper onto a baking tray and cover with cling film to keep it fresh -plus keep out any smells from the fridge. Now chill your dough for at least an hour, I left mine over night but 1-2 hours is fine.

-When your dough's properly chilled, pre-heat your oven to 180°C and line two baking sheets with greaseproof paper. Remove one piece of pre-rolled dough from the fridge at a time and start cutting out your shapes, the amount of cookies you end up with will depend on the size and shape of your cutter. I ended up with 18 snowmen. If you have lots of left over dough, just re-roll it and cut out a few more shapes, but try not to warm it up too much as you do.

-Place your sheets of cookie shapes into the oven and bake for 8-11 minutes. Obviously the longer you bake the darker and crispier your cookies will be. I baked mine for exactly 9 minutes and they were just perfect for us.

-Place your cookies on a wire rack to cool completely before you ice them -it'll run everywhere if you try to do it when they're still warm.

snowman sugar cookies
snowman sugar cookies

Ingredients: (for the icing)

350g of icing sugar
2 large egg whites -around 70g
1 teaspoons of vanilla extract

-Add your icing sugar to a large bowl or stand mixer and pour on your egg white and vanilla -make sure you have no yolk in there! On a very low speed so you aren't engulfed in a white cloud, start to mix. Keep going for 5-6 minutes until fully combined and thoroughly mixed. It should be really quite stiff at this point so don't worry.

snowman sugar cookies

To Decorate:

-If your planning on using one colour that's fine, but if you want to use a few like I did with the snowmen then separate your icing into small bowls so you can colour it. I find gel works better than the liquid colouring.

-Once you have your desired colour you need to get the consistency just right for flooding your cookies. This just means filling in the large area with your icing.

-If you can lift up your spoon and leave a trail with your icing that doesn't disappear then it's too thick. Your looking for the trail of icing to disappear back into the rest of the icing in around 4-5 seconds -once you have that you're good to go. So to achieve this, add 1/2 a teaspoon of water at a time until your consistency is just right, but if you add too much, don't panic, you can always add a little more icing sugar to thicken it up again.

-Add your icing to either piping bags or as I did, food bags. Starting with the white for the snowman as it's the largest area, pipe a thin line around the outside of the cookie -only where you want the white to be. When you have one continuous edge you can start to pipe icing into the middle of your outline, it will spread out on its own but you can gift it a little hand with the tip of a fork.

-When you've finished the white on all your cookies, you can start their little hats and scarves, for them you do exactly the same as you did with the white.

-For the eyes and coal buttons you only have to make small dots, you only need a little as it will spread a tiny bit. And for the carrot nose you can make a slightly larger spot but them drag it to one side for the carrot shape.

The icing will dry in about 5-8 hours, depending on how thick you've applied it. However to be safe I like to leave mine over night just to make sure everything is fully set.

These cookies also make the sweetest little gifts, you can even ice names on them if you like, something I think we're definitely going to do to give out on Christmas Eve.

snowman sugar cookies
snowman sugar cookies


Twelve Sleeps To Go!


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2 comments

  1. These look so good! I'm super impressed, love the decorating. I cannot believe it is only 12 days until Christmas! Looking forward to your festive posts :) x

    Jasmin Charlotte

    ReplyDelete
  2. These almost look too cute to eat!!

    http://laurenslittleblogs.blogspot.co.uk/

    ReplyDelete

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