Happy Friday, everyone! How are you hanging in there, guys? This Corona situation has me trying to stay calm, while having a ton of nervous energy that I’m trying to channel into meaningful things. Meaningful being for me at this very moment in time: baking. #coronabaking. And decorating said baked goods. And we can all use some rainbows right now, right? Which is why Kirsty and I decided that two rainbow themed posts after another were perfectly fine and just the ticket. These Rainbow Sugar Cookies were so good! Once again, @sallysbakeblog had the perfect recipe for the sugar cookies and @allrecipes delivered an excellent icing recipe. These were so much fun to decorate! My piping skills are definitely getting better! But I also attribute that to the icing recipe, which was way easier to handle than the runny concoction I used the last time I attempted piping (if you’ve been with us since the beginning you’ll remember those failed Hanukkah cookies… 😆)
I’m so glad I had a peaceful and focused morning making these, before the news hit that schools in Berlin are closing for the next five weeks… 🤦🏻♀️ Totally called for and I’ve been waiting for it, but I am steeling my nerves, girding my loins and taking extra deep breaths in preparation. Let’s stay strong and stay healthy! xoxo Donata
Ingredients Sugar Cookies
Makes about 24 cookies
2 and 1/4 cups (281g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/4 or 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional, but makes the flavor outstanding)
Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
In a large bowl using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on high speed until completely smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla, and almond extract (if using) and beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. Dough will be relatively soft. If the dough seems too soft and sticky for rolling, add 1 tablespoon more flour.
Divide the dough into 2 equal parts. Place each portion onto a piece of lightly floured parchment paper or a lightly floured silicone baking mat. With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 1/4-inch thickness. The rolled-out dough can be any shape, as long as it is evenly 1/4-inch thick.
Lightly dust one of the rolled-out doughs with flour. Place a piece of parchment on top. (This prevents sticking.) Place the 2nd rolled-out dough on top. Cover with plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then refrigerate for at least 1-2 hours and up to 2 days.
Once chilled, preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Carefully remove the top dough piece from the refrigerator. If it’s sticking to the bottom, run your hand under it to help remove it. Using a cookie cutter, cut the dough into shapes. Re-roll the remaining dough and continue cutting until all is used. Repeat with 2nd piece of dough.
Arrange cookies on baking sheets 3 inches apart. Bake for 11-12 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. If your oven has hot spots, rotate the baking sheet halfway through bake time. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before decorating.
Sugar Cookie Icing
1 cup (125 g) confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons milk
2 teaspoons light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon almond extract (optional, I did not use it)
assorted food coloring
1/2 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
crushed golden sprinkles for the pot of gold
glitter spray (optional)
In a small bowl, stir together confectioners' sugar and milk until smooth. Beat in corn syrup and almond extract until icing is smooth and glossy. If icing is too thick, add more corn syrup.
Divide into separate bowls, and add food colorings to each to achieve the desired intensity.
I doubled the recipe, mixed the colors and left one batch white for the clouds. Pipe the arches on to the rainbows. I started with the red frosting on the top and worked my way down. Leave a space at the bottom for the pot of gold.
Then pipe white frosting around the edge of the clouds on the cookies and fill in the middle. This part doesn’t have to be neat. Sprinkle a small mound of shredded coconut on each of the clouds and press the coconut down lightly. Shake off any excess. Pipe a line of icing under the last rainbow arch. Press some gold sprinkles onto the icing. Spray with glitter spray. Let set before serving.
Sugar Cookie Recipe by Sally McKenney
Icing recipe by JBS BOX