How about some nice decorated cookies for your mom for Mother’s Day instead of flowers? I bet your mom will love them :)
For the cookies:
1 3/4 cups (220g) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (70g) confectioners‘ sugar
1 pinch of salt
2/3 cup (150g) cold butter
1 small egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
For the royal icing:
10.6 oz. (300g) confectioners’ sugar
2 tbsp. meringue powder*
1.7 fl. oz. (50ml) water, plus maybe more for thinning the icing
some drops of lemon or vanilla flavor (optional)
food colors (e.g. pink, purple, yellow, and green)*
1. Add the flour, confectioners‘ sugar, and salt to a large bowl and mix to combine. Add the cold butter in small pieces and cut into even smaller pieces with a pastry blender*. Whisk the egg and add together with the vanilla extract to the bowl – mix with a fork first, then knead with your hands to get a nice smooth dough. Try to work quickly so the butter is not melting. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least 1 hour or overnight.
2. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line a baking sheet with baking parchment and set aside. Divide the dough in half (keep one half in the fridge) and roll out thinly on a lightly floured surface. Use a round or heart cookie cutter to cut out cookies. Collect leftover dough and roll out again. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes – the cookies should not get much of a color. Take out of the oven and let cool down on the baking sheet for some time, then transfer to a wire rack to cool down completely. Bake more cookies with the remaining dough sitting in the fridge.
3. For the royal icing add the confectioners’ sugar and meringue powder to a large bowl and mix to combine. Gradually add some of the water and the flavoring (optional) and mix with a handheld mixer or your kitchen machine. At first, the mix will probably have a texture like wet sand or streusel but the more water you add the more it will look like buttercream/frosting. Be careful not to add too much water or the icing will get runny – you want a thick texture that will keep its shape when you pipe it onto the cookies. Mix for 2-3 minutes until everything is well combined. Do not overwork your hand mixer though. Some will have problems with the thick consistency of the icing.
4. Color the royal icing with different food colors and fill it into piping bags with very small piping tips (star-shaped and for leaves). Decorate the cooled cookies with rosettes, dots, and leaves. Since the icing dries quite quickly, it is best to use one piping bag/color at a time, work on several cookies in one run, and keep the other piping bags (especially the tips) covered with a damp paper towel. Let the finished cookies dry for at least 8 hours.
Keywords: cookies, Mother's Day, flowers, floral, royal icing