BAKING and icing cookies is a nice way to spend a few hours at the weekend. The smell of the sweet biscuits baking fills the kitchen, and then the tantilizing wait for them to cool begins. If you can wait long enough the biscuits will need to be cold before you can start icing. Certainly cookies can but cut into whichever shape takes your fancy, but I opted for some circular discs — that I then decorated with a selection of sprinkles — and hearts. There are hundreds of different shape cutters available. It is good to try and keep your various cookie shapes an even size so they bake at the same speed.
There is raw egg used in the icing recipe. If you would prefer to use a pasteurised powdered egg white, such as meri-white, add 10g of powder for each egg and whisk it with 50mls of warm water until foamy. Fresh eggs are generally safe to use but if someone is infirmed, pregnant or very young and will be eating the biscuits the powder is a good alternative.
When using colouring for icing, a little goes a long way, there are natural colours available as well as the synthetic versions. I make piping bags with the small plastic sandwich bags you get in most supermarkets. I use one of the bottom corners of the plastic bag to form a cone like piping bag. There are quite a lot of videos online that will give you simple tutorials on how to ice a cookie well. I start by drawing a line, with my chosen colour, around the edge of the biscuit then filling it in with the icing. Adding topping such as sprinkles or edible glitter is the easiest way to decorate. You can also pipe on decorations and draw a line with an opposing colour.
If you would like to serve iced biscuits straight away you can dry them in the warm oven to harden the icing. Otherwise they will harden in a hour or so on a wire rack at room temperature.
Cookies or biscuits should not be stored in the same container as cakes or they will absorb the moisture from the cakes and begin to soften. If they get too hard in their own tin and you would like to soften them a little add a piece of apple to the container.