Festive Cookies 2 Ways

Makes 20 cookies

 

INGREDIENTS

 

For the cookie dough:

 

1 cup butter, softened at room temperature

1 cup castor sugar 

2 eggs 

1 tsp vanilla essence

3 cups SASKO Cake Flour, sifted 

 

For the cookie wreath:

 

1 egg white

1 cup icing sugar, sifted

Various sizes star and snowflake cookie cutters

 

For the spiral cookies: 

 

Red liquid food colouring

Green liquid food colouring

Sprinkles (Christmas colours would be best)

1 egg white, lightly beaten with a fork

 

METHOD

 

For the cookie dough:

 

1. In a bowl, beat together the softened butter and sugar with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth and light in colour, about 3 minutes. This process is called creaming.

 

2. Reduce the speed to low. Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating until fully incorporated. 

 

3. Add the vanilla essence and slowly beat in the flour 1/3 cup at a time until a nice dough has formed. 

 

4. Remove the dough from the bowl and press into 2 flat rectangles. 

 

5. Wrap the cookie dough in plastic and refrigerate 30 minutes to overnight. *Chef’s tip: The dough can be frozen for up to 2 months.

 

For the cookie wreath:

 

1. Preheat the oven to 170℃ and line a large baking tray with baking paper. 

 

2. Remove the cookie dough from the fridge and roll it out about 1cm thick on a floured surface. 

 

3. Cut out as many cookies as possible using a snowflake- and star-shaped cookie cutter and place each cut out on the baking paper. 

 

4. Refrigerate the cookie dough shapes for another 20 minutes to hold shape when baking.

 

5. Bake the cookies for about 12 minutes, until golden. Allow to cool for 10 minutes on the baking tray before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. 

 

6. Make royal icing by whisking egg whites until fluffy. Beat in icing sugar until icing is thick and glossy and a pipeable consistency. 

 

7. Pour into a piping bag with a very small round nozzle. 

 

8. Decorate your cookies with festive patterns and leave to dry completely.

 

9. Once the icing has dried and hardened, arrange the cookies in a circular (wreath) formation, sticking them together with small blobs of royal icing. 

 

10. Place on your table as a BEAUTIFUL centrepiece and ENJOY!

 

For the spiral cookies:

 

1. Preheat the oven to 160℃ and line a large baking tray with baking paper and some flour. 

 

2. Divide cookie dough into 3 equal parts. Knead 1 ml red food colouring into one part, and green into the other, leaving the other free of colour. The amount of food colouring can be adjusted slightly to make the desired shade. 

 

3. Roll out each dough ball to 1/2 cm thick on the floured baking paper. Brush each dough sheet with egg white.

 

4. Layer each sheet of dough over the other to create 3 layers of colour.

 

5. Gently roll inwards to create a log and brush the outside lightly with egg white.

 

6. Fill a try with sprinkles and roll the log in them to coat completely.

 

7. Wrap the log in plastic wrap and place in the freezer for 1 hour.

 

8. With a sharp knife, slice the log into ½-1 cm thick rounds. *Chefs Tip: For easy slicing, rinse the blade with hot water and wipe dry.

 

9. Place cookies on lined baking sheet and bake until set but not browned, about 12-14 minutes.

 

10. Leave to set for 4 - 5 minutes on the sheet, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

ENJOY immediately or place in an airtight jar for gifting!