Friday, February 12, 2010
My sugar cookie obsession is heightened at Valentine's Day. I love the simple palette of reds and pinks, the sparkles, and of course the hearts. The travel schedule for February put a dent in my baking plans, but I did get a few cookies out, and had to throw them on the blog as a mini tribute to my Sweeties out there.
I made personalized hearts for the volleyball team. Pink frosted hearts with edible glitter and packaged with a tulle bow. I mean seriously, who doesn't love personalized, sparkly and edible? I also packaged up a few cookies for my USAFA Doolie who is going through "hell month", some sweet messages to my mother-in-law who is freezing in this crazy weather up North, and a Valentine's thank you to my mom and dad since I had such a great trip last month. It was also an old friend's birthday so I sent her a few cookies to Minnesota. Hopefully they won't shatter in the frigid temps!
Some people are a little surprised by the crispy cookie and hard frosting. This is exactly the way I like them. There was a pan this time however, that hung out in the oven a tad too long, so crispy may be an understatement. But I love the contrast of that butter cookie with the royal icing. I am often asked about the royal icing. I do not use raw egg whites in mine, but I do use Wilton's Meringue Powder. I wish I could say it was an exact measurement, but I just sort of dump some in the mixing bowl, add a little warm water and a small amount of powdered sugar. I whip it for about 7 minutes until it is gorgeous and fluffy. If the cookies are being mailed out, I add a little corn syrup, otherwise just some clear vanilla and about 2# of powdered sugar and warm water to get the consistency. I made a few extras for my own special Valentine as I am gone this weekend. Lucky guy, he can finish that awesome birthday cake too!
I also thought it would be fun to see what I was blogging a year ago. The Miracle WHip Facial is one of my most popular hits on my blog, but the Daring Baker's Challenge for January was one of my best Valentine creations!
I hope you all have a lovely Valentine's (read: over hyped, commercialized, and over rated) Day. There was a time when this day was full of expectation, excitement, even disappointment. It is much more fun giving my home made Valentine's to special people and making their day since I already have my Valentine.