Cupcakes mastered thanks to the old family recipe so now I turn my attention to making those great little cookies and decorating them.
At the recent Brisbane Cake Expo I managed to buy some more food colouring gels, so I am keen to put them to good use.
Baking these cookies and getting them right requires a little preparation. It's not onerous, but will help you get the best results.
The first thing I do is pay attention to the oven temp. In this case we need the oven to be at about 180C and the racks towards the middle of the oven.
As usual, I make sure that the eggs and the butter are at room temperature. This can vary between summer and winter so you need to judge how long the butter should be out. The butter should be soft, yet still retain it's shape.
Whisk 2 cups of plain flour, 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of salt together in a bowl and put it aside.
Cream 120 grams of butter and 1 cup of caster sugar until light and fluffy. I use the paddle with my Kitchen Aid.
Add in an egg, lightly beaten and 1 teaspoon of vanilla.
Usually I give these a mix at low speed until they are just combined.
Once combined, I roll the mixture out of the bowl, and break it into two parts. Wrap these two discs of mixture tightly in plastic film and refrigerate for at least and hour.
After the hour, roll one of the discs out to about 1/2cm. This is where time and temperature are critical. I work quickly cutting my shapes out and carefully positioning them on a tray lined with baking paper. If it's warm I pop the tray back into the fridge for about 15mins before installing them into the oven.
Baking time is about 8-9 minutes. Watch them carefully as you don't want them to brown too much, or burn.
Let them cool on the tray then transfer to a cooling rack.
These can be decorated with royal icing but they are very nice plain.
Store in an airtight container. They will keep - providing no one want to eat them all.