First I purchased several heart shape cookie cutters. The one on the upper left shows the original shape. (Actually, the one above is for another cookie recipe in the book....but you get the idea of how to remold the cutter from the picture. I used a 3" cutter for the sugar heart recipe.) These cookie cutters can be changed into a whimsical, one-of-a-kind, heart shape. The soft metal is easily remolded when pressed firmly with your fingers. I moved the sides in a bit to narrow the heart and pressed the concave “V” shape of the cutter down, making a deeper cut into the top of the heart. Take care to keep the top convex curves of the heart shape rounded. The picture above shows the new shape of the cookie cutter.
Gather all the bits of cookie left over.
Put them into a cute container. Add frosting, and they will be the perfect treat. (Just want you to know....no cookie bits are wasted here!!!)
I made a template of the cookie cutter using plastic template material. (You can purchase the plastic at your local quilt shop.)
I held the template over the cookie and sprinkled the nonpareils from a spoon. It felt like I had more control over their distribution....although who can really control nonpareils? The glaze dries and you are left with cookies that look designed. I love the look of these!!!
The nonpareil placement isn't perfect....but they still are sweet.
Two tips before starting the recipe.
1. Scoop up your flour with a tablespoon and fill the measuring cup. Scrape away the excess flour with a straight edge. This will prevent using too much flour and making your cookies dry.
2. Roll the cookies out between parchment paper. No need to add extra flour to prevent sticking.
1 1/2 cups of confectioners’ sugar
1 cup Land O’Lakes butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup of confectioners’ sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons half and half (more if needed to get the right consistency)
1 drop of food coloring (soft gel paste - AmeriColor #164 Electric Pink)
Tiny nonpareils - white
-Mix the sugar and butter. Add the egg and flavorings. Mix thoroughly with your electric mixer.
-Stir the dry ingredients together and add to the mixer 1 cup at a time.
-Gather the dough into a ball. Half the dough and form each half into a disk. Place the disks into a plastic bag and refrigerate for 4 hours or until the dough is chilled.
-Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
-Place 1/2 of a chilled disk between two pieces of parchment paper and roll the dough out to 3/16” thick. Keep the remainder of cookie dough in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it. Remove the top parchment paper and use your cookie cutter to cut out the heart shapes. Place the hearts on parchment covered cookie sheets. Gather the remaining dough and roll again for more hearts.
-Bake until the cookie begins to lightly brown on the edges, about 15 minutes. Cut the cookies again with the cookie cutter while the cookies are warm for a perfect heart shape. Remove the extra bits of dough from the cookie. Slide the parchment paper with the cookies onto a rack to cool. Repeat with the remaining dough.
Makes about 4 dozen cookies. Allow the cookie frosting to dry and then package in a airtight container. These will last about 15 minutes.
Until later sweet hearts!