I’ve missed baking and decorating cookies. During the Christmas holidays, when I normally take on this special project for friends and family gifts, my right hand was hurting too much to even consider decorating so many cookies at once. So, for that reason, I took a pass on the project and hoped to take it on for Valentine’s Day. Happily, my hand is quite a bit better now, and I was able to bake and decorate about ten dozen cookies over the past few days.
This is also the first time that I have made cookies for Valentine’s Day gifts, and I must say that I like decorating them for this special holiday as much as I like decorating them for Christmas. I opted to stick with heart shapes to help keep things a bit more simple. After baking the first large batch and experimenting with different ways to decorate them, I quickly discovered that one particular cutout shape was by far my favorite. So, for the final large batch, I only made cookies with that shape – a medium heart cutout with a pretty scalloped edge.
These are vanilla-almond sugar cookies and are so tasty, even without icing. I also add a little almond flavoring to my royal icing before thinning it for piping and flooding the cookies. The heart flowers are quite simple to do. Just layer three dots of flood icing on top of each other, then drag a toothpick from top to bottom through the center of each one in one slightly curved motion. I varied the heart flower designs on most of the cookies, just to see what each different combination would look like, and there are many combinations that I like in the bunch!
Here are the results of this year’s big cookie project! I had so much fun that I’m thinking about doing Easter cookies this year, too, if I can find some cute cutouts soon.