My nieces and I are planning to make cookie bouquets this weekend. Both Amanda and Cassie are aspiring young bakers. Needless to say, they are very excited about this project.
They have already marked the day on their calendar and decided on their tasks. Being the older sister, Amanda will measure or scale these ingredients.
|Vegetable shortening||2/3 cup|
|Unsalted butter, softened||2 oz or ½ stick|
|Granulated sugar||½ cup|
|Light brown sugar, packed||½ cup|
|Vanilla extract||2 tsp|
|Ground cinnamon||1 tsp|
|All purpose flour||3½ cups|
|Baking powder||2 tsp|
Knowing how inquisitive Amanda is, I’m certain that she will ask me these questions.
- Why do we use both vegetable shortening and butter in this recipe?
- Why are ingredients listed in this order?
Cassie, the artist, will be in charge of decorating. These templates of flowers and leaf are Amanda and Cassie’s joined effort. They want to make cookie bouquets to give to their mother on her special day.
They have also assigned me the task of creaming softened butter, vegetable shortening, and sugars (both granulated and brown) until light and fluffy.
Then I will add vanilla extract and eggs, one at a time. Mix well after each addition.
Next, Amanda will add flour, baking powder, and salt to this mixture.
She’ll gently blend them together until just combined. I know that she loves to do this by hands. If preferred, she can divide the dough into two or three small portions, and add a different food coloring to each.
Cassie will cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for a couple of hours.
When the time comes, it’s my job to preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. and line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
My nieces will want to take turn rolling the dough out on a floured kitchen counter to a thickness of about ½ inch. They’ll work with a small portion of dough at a time while keeping the rest refrigerated.
Then they’ll trace the flower and leaf patterns on the rolled out dough with a dull knife.
Using a spatula, my nieces will carefully transfer the cut-out dough to prepared cookie sheets, and insert a popsicle stick about 2-inches into the base of each cookie.
I will make sure that cookies are properly baked. They should be in the oven for 12 – 15 minutes, or until they are very lightly browned.
Let cookies cool on baking sheets for a couple of minutes before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely.
Please note – Don’t handle cookies by the stick until they are completely cool.
While cookies are cooling, Cassie will prepare the icing for decorating. She will need:
|Vanilla extract||¼ tsp|
|Confectioners’ sugar, sifted||1 cup|
|Some milk or orange juice|
- Adding vanilla extract to sifted confectioners’ sugar. Stirring in some milk or orange juice, 1 teaspoon at a time, until the icing is of a drizzling consistency.
- For color icing, dividing it into separate bowls and adding a drop or two of different food coloring to each.
- Putting the icing in a small zip-locking plastic bag and closing it tightly. Making a very very small hole in a lower corner of the bag.
- If you prefer not to work with icing, you can simply sprinkle some colorful decorating sugars on cookies just before baking them.
My niece, Cassie, will create amazing edible arts on these cookie bouquets.
This recipe makes about 12 – 20 cookies depending on the size of your patterns.
Last but not least, the three of us will have just as much fun cleaning up as we do baking. 🙂
This recipe for cookie bouquets is adapted from Bake the Best-Ever Cookies! Quick Start for Kids by Sarah A. Williamson.