Is there a better way to cheer yourself up on a grey, rainy day than to make pretty, pastel-coloured polka dot butterfly cookies?
I couldn't think of one, and neither could my kids, so we got our aprons on and made some cookie dough (using the same recipe as for the Valentine's heart cookies I made in February). We rolled it out, cut out some butterflies and baked until they were just turning golden at the edges.
A couple of months ago, I had a request for some instructions on how to ice cookies. So here's how.
First you need to prepare some royal icing. You can buy royal icing sugar in most supermarkets, and make it up using cold water, according to the instructions on the box. Once it's ready, decide which colour(s) you'd like to use. Mix each colour up in a separate bowl. The consistency needs to be soft, but not runny. You need to be able to pipe a line with it, without the icing curling up (too firm) or dripping everywhere (too watery).
For each colour you make up, put about a third of your icing in a piping bag. I've used disposable bags which I made from baking parchment. You can find loads of tutorials for making piping bags on the internet, so I won't bother trying to explain here - watching a video on YouTube will probably make far more sense to you.
Thin the other two-thirds of the coloured royal icing a little, using tiny amounts of cold water, until it's just about runny enough to drip off a spoon. Now put this icing into another piping bag, or into a squeezy plastic bottle with a nozzle.
Using one colour of the firmer icing, pipe the outline of your cookie, and leave to dry for a few minutes.
|Not my best effort...I blame the children!|
Then, using the same colour, flood the middle with the runny icing. While it is still wet you can use runny icing in a different colour to pipe dots on top.
Allow to dry.
And this is the result - a plate of extremely edible butterflies. The fact that these biscuits have the sweetness and crunch of Party Rings (remember those?), thereby evoking a real sense of nostalgia, only adds to their appeal!