When I was a little girl my cousins gave us a plate of Christmas cookies every year. They were cut-out sugar cookies decorated with the kind of icing that got hard and didn’t smear all over your fingers (and I wonder where Jett gets his sensory issues).
I adored those cookies.
I decided this year to try them with my own kids. Needless to say, we learned lots of lessons.
Rolling out sugar cookies is a pain. These cookies are fragile. They may be too fragile to be a staple in this house. And rolling cookies annoys me. I yelled at the kids and sent them away because they “weren’t doing it right”. So I took a break and had some coffee and thought about what I wanted them to learn (and what I was teaching) from this experience.
I decided to ice the cookies today, a full day after I baked them. Mostly because I was too tired and too grumpy to tackle it yesterday.
We made royal icing (I found out that’s what the hard icing is called. It has egg whites or meringue powder in it to make it dry hard).When royal icing comes together in the mixing bowl it looks and tastes just like marshmallow fluff. It’s very delicious.
We divided the icing into little bowls and put food coloring in them to have colored icing. Letting each kid pick 2 colors to make was just the right amount of icing colors. (7 bowls total for those of you keeping count at home… 6 colors plus white).
3 dozen cookies was just right. Less and the kids would have felt like they didn’t get to decorate enough. More and they would have gotten bored and wandered off. As it was, Carlos was the last kid standing. I’m discovering he has the most stamina for art projects.
This is messy work. My table was a disaster, even with wax paper “place mats” for each kid.
If you are a germ-phobe, don’t eat our cookies. There was lots of finger-licking and finger-painting.
They turned out beautiful. Even better than I remember.