Face cookies are a recurring request from my kids’ for their birthdays. Previously, I have always made little Hare Krishna faces (click here to peek). But in the past, I have always used Dec-a-Cake or whatever crappy tube icing I could get my hands on. The white was always homemade–just powdered sugar and water. However, the last time I made sugar cookies (cute little ghosts for Halloween), I wasn’t pleased with the consistency of the icing–which can be so tempermental. Also, a friend of mine made a little ha-ha at my expense about how I don’t make my own decorative frosting.
Well, I sure showed her! I found a sugar cookie icing recipe that got rave reviews on-line, made a small adjustment of subbing water for milk and got frosting. Quickly I grew tired of sifting the powdered sugar with the flour sifter that was cramping my hand and I felt too much like I was exercising for guitar (I don’t play). So I came up with this totally genius little kitchen tip which I will pass on to you. I used my food processor to sift the powdered sugar!
Now, now. A standing ovation is not necessary. Just throw your sugar in the food processor (plastic blade), turn it on and rock it back and forth, side to side every few seconds. It takes a little while to get it all nice and soft and powdery but it sure keeps your hand from bulking up with unsightly muscles. I buy my powdered sugar in bulk so it gets kind of crunchy. If you are working with smaller quantities, you may not have these issues. Good for you. No really. I am happy for you.
Back to the icing. First of all, let’s say that this icing is kind of gross. To put it nicely, it’s “vegan” (code word for “the main ingredient is….god, I can’t even say it!”). I couldn’t do many colors because I only bought a tiny canister of the vegetable lard, made too much red and blue and had enough for only one more color. The boy wanted me to make vampire cookies but white fangs wouldn’t show so well on white faces. His other suggestion was tiger faces. But really, it was too late in the game for that. So it was a toss-up between tilak and mustaches (that was my clever idea). He chose mustaches, amidst much laughter.
Let me just say that handling the food coloring was a weird experience. Spoontula-ing the colored icing into clear pastry bags really drove it home–i was voluntarily putting poison on my beautiful, organic, flax speckled sugar cookies. And my kids were loving it. Eh, once in a while won’t totally cancer them.
These cookies are kind of ugly and not so cute compared to my previous expedition into the world of edible faces. Hopefully the kids won’t say mean things to me about them.
I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had time to eat a thing. Thank goodness for mineral water; 6% of my daily calcium per glass! Okay. I have been eating. Gross, gross things. Like too much gluten and raw cookie dough. Barf.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I’m really trying to maneuver this crazy kitchen the best that I can, using whatever is in reach. I had a bowl of ground and slimy flax eggs whipped up but after about 20 dozen cookies, ran out. Instead of reaching for the spice grinder, I just opened the fridge and grabbed a few unused pieces of tofu. Mash, mash. That’s my egg replacer. The resultant chocolate chip cookies were nice and puff.
Right now the gluten is in the oven, taking over all three racks. Thank you, convection. Many jammie cookies have been made and are awaiting a sprinkle of faerie dust before entering their paper sack where they will hide until the party is over. At that time, they will be passed out to all the departing children who will excitedly open the bags expecting candy and party blowers and an assortment of useless plastic crap. Instead, they will be met by an assortment of organic, homemade cookies. That will be the true test of their good manners.