As beautiful as decorated cookies look, they can be very fiddly to make, and require some genuine artistic talent.
But you’ll be amazed how easy it is to create this fabulous floral cookie bouquet! And I know you probably think I’m exaggerating, but it really is simple; There’s no need to colour endless batches of royal icing, and even someone with my limited talent for drawing can create something that looks really effective.
I simply flood the cookies with plain white icing, and then once they’re dry, paint on a basic design. Outline them in black icing to really make them pop, and then just display them in a flower pot.
This cookie bouquet makes a wonderful gift for Easter, Mother’s Day, or any other day when you want to let someone know that you care.
- 150 g butter
- 200 g castor sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 350 g plain flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 500 g icing sugar
- egg whites
- cocoa powder
- food colouring
- Cream together the butter and sugar.
- Add the vanilla and then the eggs, beating well after each addition.
- Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt together, then sprinkle over the wet ingredients.
- Stir everything together until just combined.
- Press the cookie dough into a flat disc, and wrap in cling film.
- Chill for at least 45 minutes in the fridge before rolling out the dough.
- Pre-heat oven to 180c / 160c fan
- Dust the work surface with plain flour. Roll out dough to about 5mm thick.
- Cut out flower shapes and transfer to baking sheet with a palette knife or hamburger turner.
- Insert a wooden skewer into the bottom of each cookie.
- Bake for approximately 10 minutes until the edges of the cookie start to brown, then leave to cool on the baking tray for 5 minutes.
- Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Sift the icing sugar, and add the egg whites.
- Adjust the icing by adding more egg whites, or icing sugar, until you reach a ’15 second icing’ consistency; When you break up the surface of the icing, it should take 15 seconds to become completely level again.
- Transfer the icing into a piping bag, fitted with a number 2 tip, or simply cut a small 2mm opening at the end of the bag.
- Outline a cookie, then immediately use the same icing to flood the inside.
- Use the wooden skewers to give the cookie a shake, and the icing should all smooth over nicely.
- Set aside to harden, and repeat with the rest of the cookies.
- Take the remaining icing and sift over a little cocoa powder to help darken it.
- Add some black food colouring, then cover and set aside for later.
- After 2-3 hours, decorate the cookies in a variety of different colours. Mix food colouring with vodka to create edible paint.
- I like to paint the centres yellow and dot with orange or brown, then paint the outer petals in a lighter colour, and streak out a darker colour from the middle.
- Once coloured, outline with the black icing to make them look bold and really stand out.
- To display, place some polystyrene, or other suitable foam into a flower pot.
- Insert the cookies, using needle-nose pliers to hold the sticks.
- Once happy with your display, cover the foam to disguise the base – I like to use green tissue paper.