I have been patiently waiting for an opportunity to make sugar cookies decorated with royal frosting. I’ve had dreams of how they would turn out! Please tell me that I’m not alone. After a trip to Syracuse to visit family I bought a few New York City themed cookies at JFK while waiting for my connecting flight. One was a taxi cab, another the Statue of Liberty and the last a blue airplane for my son Leif. I can definitely tell you that these cookies looked so much better than they tasted. Not to mention they were hard as a rock. So in my wave of disappointment I decided that although my first attempt of decorated sugar cookies wouldn’t look the best; I was determined to make them at least edible. When I arrived home I searched many recipes and finally decided that I liked Glorious Eats recipe the best but made a few slight modifications.

The story of the royal frosting was a little more complicated, making it was the easy part. However, learning how to properly decorate cookies using the royal frosting took reading an entire tutorial written by Sweetopia to have a standing chance of succeeding. Then I worked with pencil and paper to decide how I was going to decorate the cookies. I traced my heart shaped cookie cutter then drew what I thought would be fairly easy design to accomplish. I was very wrong about the easy part but at least I thought a head. Before tackling the decoration process I took pictures of the iced cookies so in the event of decorating failure I would still have a product that I was confident enough to share with you. As you can see there are only plain red and pink iced cookies. That’s because I failed at the decorating part. Actually, the 5th cookie wasn’t so bad but I used my best judgment and didn’t bother taking pictures. So although I was partly defeated I wouldn’t say I completely lost the battle. There will definitely be more attempts in the future.

3 cups all-purpose flour 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature ½ cup powdered sugar ½ cup sugar 1 large egg, beaten 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 ½ teaspoon almond extract

Instructions: In a medium bowl, stir together the flour and baking powder and set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. This should take about 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat another minute or so. Add the flour mixture slowly. Blend until all of the flour is incorporated and the dough begins to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Place dough on plastic wrap form in a disc shape, wrap dough and refrigerate for about 2 hours.

When the dough has chilled and is firm preheat oven to 350°F. Because I didn’t want to add excess flour to dough I rolled dough out while it was sandwiched between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Then I transferred dough with plastic wrap still attached to the back side of a cookie sheet and placed it in freezer for a couple minutes. Then I used cookie cutters and transferred chilled shapes to cookie sheet lined with a silicone baking mat. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for about 2 minutes before transferring to cooling rack. Allow cookies to cool completely prior to icing.

3/4 cup of warm water 5 Tablespoons Meringue Powder 1 teaspoon cream of tartar 4 ¼ cups confectioners’ sugar

*Note: if your meringue powder has no vanilla flavor (vanillin powder) in it, add a teaspoon of clear vanilla to this recipe.

Instructions: In mixer bowl, pour in the warm water and the meringue powder. Mix it with a whisk by hand until it is frothy and thickened for about 30 seconds. Add the cream of tartar and mix for 30 seconds more. Pour in all the icing sugar at once and place the bowl on the mixer. Using the paddle attachment on the LOWEST speed, mix slowly for a full 10 minutes. Icing will get thick and creamy.

Cover the bowl with a dampened tea-towel to prevent crusting and drying. Tint with food coloring or thin the icing with small amounts of warm water to reach the desired consistency.