Monday, September 27, 2010

Daring Baker's August '10: Sugar Cookies

I love sugar cookies! So I was ecstatic to see that this month's DB challenge would be featuring the simply delicious and tasty treat. I wasn't quite sure how I wanted to decorate the cookies, but I realized that in this challenge it was mandatory that we had to use decorate the cookies in a "September theme" (whatever September means to you). So, I chose to do this challenge in two parts. The first day, I made a bunch of little square cookies (each 1 square inch in size), which gave me until day two to decide what my "September theme" would be.

The September 2010 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Mandy of “What the Fruitcake?!” Mandy challenged everyone to make Decorated Sugar Cookies based on recipes from Peggy Porschen and The Joy of Baking.

Basic Sugar Cookies
(Makes Approximately 36x 10cm / 4" Cookies)

- ½ cup + 6 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
- 3 cups + 3 Tbsp All Purpose

- 1 cup Caster Sugar
- 1 Large Egg, lightly beaten
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract / Or seeds from 1 vanilla bean

• Cream together the butter, sugar and any flavorings you’re using. Beat until just becoming
creamy in texture.
• Beat in the egg until well combined, make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
Add the sifted flour and mix on low until a non sticky dough forms.
• Knead into a ball and divide into 2 or 3 pieces.
• Roll out each portion between parchment paper to a thickness of about 5mm (0.2 inch)
• Refrigerate for a minimum of 30mins.
• Once chilled, peel off parchment and place dough on a lightly floured surface.
• Cut out shapes with cookie cutters or a sharp knife.
• Arrange shapes on parchment lined baking sheets and refrigerate for 30mins - 1 hour.
• Re-roll scraps and follow the above process until all scraps are used up.
• Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C Fan Assisted) / 350°F / Gas Mark 4.
• Bake until golden around the edges, about 8-15mins depending on the size of the cookies.
• Once completely cooled, decorate as desired.

So... again, with the theme... hmm... that was a tricky one to figure out. After making the cookies, my mind started running trying to figure out how to theme my cookies for September. Then, after a long hard think, I remembered that September 13th, 2010 was the 25th Anniversary of the release of Super Mario Bros. So, I used the cute little squares as "bits" and created an 8-bit Mario by using various colors of icing sugar to decorate the cookies with the outline-fill/flood

Royal Icing

- 2½ - 3 cups Confectioner’s Sugar, unsifted
- 2 Large Egg Whites
- 2 tsp Lemon Juice
- 1 tsp Almond Extract, optional

• Beat egg whites with lemon juice until combined.
• Sift the icing sugar to remove lumps and add it to the egg whites.
• Beat on low until combined and smooth.
• Use immediately or keep in an airtight container.

3 cups of confectioner's sugar is good for piping the outline, and by adding a little bit of water to the mixture the icing is perfect for flooding the outline)

Look at all the cute little colored squares! They were a bit time consuming to decorate, but in the end I think they were worth every bit of effort. If I were to do this again, I'd probably pipe the icing a bit closer to the borders of the cookies so that there would be less cookie visible when the 8-bit character is put together. Other than that, the cookies and icing were delicious and my sisters really enjoyed picking apart Mario, piece by piece ^_^


Renata said...

Love your creative idea! Awesome!

Kris Ngoei said...

So clever! Just totally love the idea of composing squares to form "pixelated" Mario....

Sawadee from bangkok,

Aparna said...

I thought it was Mario! :) A great idea. My daughter and I used to play this at one time.

Suzler said...

Mario! What a clever idea! I love the pixelated look so much. Brilliant. :D

Linda V @ Bubble and Sweet said...

Wow what a great idea but so much work piping all those tiny little squares. Double points for creativity.