Saturday, October 31, 2015

Halloween Cookies

Pin It Halloween Cookies

Happy Halloween! I baked all weekend and decorated a variety of Halloween cookies this year: grim reaper, jack o'lanterns, witch hats, cats, bats, skulls, tombstones, ghosts and candy corn. Though time consuming, I love to work with cookies.

Halloween Cookies
Close-up of Halloween Cookies
Chocolate Sugar Cookie
Ingredients
2 cups (4 sticks) Unsalted Butter, softened

2 cups Sugar

2 Extra Large Eggs

3 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract

4 cups All-Purpose Flour

1 ½ cups Cocoa Powder

1 teaspoon Kosher Salt

Halloween Cookies

Directions
Sift flour, cocoa powder and salt in large bowl and combine with spatula; put aside.

Cut each stick of butter into 8 pieces.

Close up of Halloween Cookies
Cream the butter and sugar together in a bowl of an electric mixer with paddle attachment on low to medium speed. Mix until incorporated, about 1 minute.

Scrape sides of bowl with spatula and mix again for 5-10 seconds more.

Reaper and Ghost
Add eggs one at a time. Scrape down bowl with spatula and mix again for another 10 seconds.

Add vanilla extract and mix for 1 minute.

Skulls
Slowly add flour mixture to bowl and mix on low speed for 1 minute. When dough clumps around paddle attachment, it is ready.

Use rolling pin and roll out dough between 2 pieces of parchment paper. Cover dough with plastic wrap and cool in fridge for 1-2 hours or overnight.

Tombstones

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Take one quarter of dough, and roll out to desired thickness and cut out desired shapes. Repeat rolling the dough and cutting shapes until you have used it all.

Place cookie shapes on parchment lined baking sheet and space apart 2 inches. Put cookies in the freezer for 5 minutes before baking. They hold their shape when you do this.

Jack O'Lanterns
Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes, or until center of cookie no longer looks wet. My cookies baked in 10 minutes.

Let cookies cool in baking sheet for 5 minutes and transfer to wire rack to cool completely, about 1 hour.

Let cookie sheets cool completely before you bake again. I put the cookie sheet in the freezer for 5 minutes. Repeat until you have baked all the cookies.

Crazy Bats

Royal Icing
Ingredients
4 Egg Whites

4 teaspoons Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed

6 cups Confectioners Sugar, sifted

Witch Hats

Directions
In a medium size bowl, whisk together the egg whites and lemon juice.

Transfer to stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment.

Slowly add sifted sugar and beat on low until smooth.

Black Cats
If needed, you may add 1 teaspoon of water at a time until you reach the right consistency. Watch the Joy of Baking (link at the end) video for both Flooding Consistency and Piping Consistency Royal Icing. If you prefer a recipe using Meringue Powder, it is also available at this link.

I separated the icing in plastic containers with lids according to the different colors I needed for tinting.

Candy Corn
I used Americolor Soft Gel Paste Food Color in Grey, Super Red, Super Black, Orange, Yellow and Super White. I made Grey by adding just a few drops of the Super Black. I wanted a bright white so I added two drops of Super White.

Keep the containers covered until you are ready to color. Royal Icing hardens fast so keep it covered when not in use.

I transferred the icing immediately into Squeeze Bottles using a funnel to prevent it from spilling. Keep the squeeze bottle tips covered. If the Royal Icing hardens due to exposure to air, spray a little bit of water and shake bottle well holding the tip with your finger. Test the icing consistency on a paper towel before decorating the cookie.

Shapes cut out
I did the white borders around each cookie and waited 1/2 hour before flooding the cookie.

Use a paintbrush or cookie stick to reach edges and use tip of toothpick to pop any air bubbles.

Royal Icing Colors I used
I lined a cookie sheet with paper towels and placed the cookies on cooling tray over it.

I did the outlines first and waited about 15 minutes and then filled the cookies. I used some sprinkles, skulls and bones for decoration.

For further information:
For the Chocolate Sugar Cookie recipe, please visit Sweetopia: http://sweetopia.net/2013/12/chocolate-sugar-cookie-recipe-cut-out-cookies/

Please visit, Joy of Baking for the Royal Icing Recipe and Video Tutorial:
http://www.joyofbaking.com/RoyalIcing.html

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Friday, October 30, 2015

Jack Skellington Cookies

Pin It Jack Skellington Cookies

Jack Skellington Cookies
Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas is one of my favorite films. I love Jack Skellington and finally after all these years, I made cookies to celebrate him for Halloween/Samhain. This was the first time I used fondant and it was a fun experience. I bought the Jack Skellington cutter on Etsy, and used Sweetopia's Vanilla Sugar Cookie recipe. I purchased the Jack Skellington doll and mug at Walgreens for $9.99. Recipe and directions follow below.

Close up of Jack Skellington Cookies

Vanilla Sugar Cookie 
Ingredients
2 cups Unsalted Butter, softened

2 cups Sugar

2 Extra Large Eggs

3 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract

5 cups King Arthur All Purpose Flour

1 teaspoon Coarse Salt

Jack Skellington Cookies

Directions
Sift flour and add salt. Combine with spatula. Put aside.

Cream butter and sugar in a hand held mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment on low; 1-2 minutes.

Scrape sides of bowl with spatula and mix for a 10-15 seconds.

Add eggs one at a time, mix until incorporated. Scrape sides of bowl and mix for 5-10 seconds.

Add vanilla extract and mix on low until incorporated, about 20-25 seconds.

Slowly add flour mixture on low to combine. The dough is ready when it begins to clump around paddle attachment.

Jack Skellington Cookies
Roll dough into ball, cover with plastic wrap and chill in fridge for 1-2 hours.

Cut dough into 4 cuts, leaving unused dough covered with plastic wrap until ready to  use.

Preheat oven tp 350 degrees.

Use 2 sheets of parchment paper with dough in between and roll with rolling pin until desired thickness is reached.

Use a round cutter to cut shapes. I measured the size cutter by placing the Jack Skellington cutter over my Ateco round cutter and made sure it fit over it correctly leaving an inch or so of space.

Jack Skellington Cutter
Place onto cookies sheets lined with parchment paper and put in freezer for 5 minutes. The cookies hold their shape when you do this.

Bake 12-15 minutes or until the edges have slightly browned.

Wait 2-3 minutes before transferring cookies on cooling racks to complete cooling.

Decorate once cookies have cooled.

Royal Icing in Super Black

Royal Icing
Ingredients
4 Egg Whites

4 teaspoons Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed

6 cups Confectioners Sugar, sifted

Wilton Decorator Preferred Fondant in White Vanilla

Directions
In a medium size bowl, whisk together the egg whites and lemon juice.

Transfer to stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment.

Slowly add sifted sugar and beat on low until smooth.

Cake Boss Rolling Pin and Wilton Decorator Preferred Fondant
If needed, you may add 1 teaspoon of water at a time until you reach the right consistency. Watch the Joy of Baking (link at the end) video for both Flooding Consistency and Piping Consistency Royal Icing. If you prefer a recipe using Meringue Powder, it is also available at this link. I only needed the Piping Consistency Royal Icing for this recipe.

Jack Skellington cutter imprinted onto Fondant
I separated the icing in 1 plastic container with lid and tinted with Americolor Soft Gel Paste Food Color in Super Black. To make the black, I added 4 drops and combined with a small spatula. Keep the container covered until you are ready to color. Royal Icing hardens fast so keep it covered when not in use.

I transferred the icing immediately into 3 small Squeeze Bottles using a funnel to prevent it from spilling. Keep the squeeze bottle tips covered. If the Royal Icing hardens due to exposure to air, spray a little bit of water and shake bottle well holding the tip with your finger. Test the icing consistency on a paper towel before decorating the cookie.

Jack Skellington Cookies ready for Royal Icing

Fondant
I bought Wilton Decorator Preferred Fondant in White Vanilla. I am typically not a fan of fondant at all, but to my surprise this Wilton product has a great taste. The fondant was very easy to work with. I sprinkled powdered sugar on my work surface/counter to prevent sticking. I sprinkled powdered sugar on my Cake Boss Fondant Rolling Pin and formed the fondant into a round ball and started kneading it until it was soft to roll out.

I rolled the fondant until desired thickness, and then dipped my Jack Skellington cutter in the powdered sugar and pressed into the fondant using both hands to make sure the imprint came out. Repeat this step until all the fondant Jack Skellington faces are done.

Use a dab of the royal icing and place in the center of the cookie and put the fondant over it. Just press gently to hold it in place. I found this easier than using royal icing in white and then black to decorate over it. I am not an artist and knew the face would not come out like I would want it to.

Close up of one Jack Skellington Cookies without Royal Icing
Take Black Royal Icing and do an outline of all the eyes and wait 10-15 minutes, and then fill in the eyes. I did the nose next and lastly the mouth on each cookie and repeated until I was done. The hardest part was the mouth, but I think I did a fine job for my first try.

I let the cookies dry for 4-5 hours.

For further information:
Please visit, Sweetopia for the Vanilla Sugar Cookie Recipe: http://sweetopia.net/2009/12/sugar-cookie-recipe/

Please visit, Joy of Baking for the Royal Icing Recipe and Video Tutorial:
http://www.joyofbaking.com/RoyalIcing.html

Enjoy!

Happy Halloween/Samhain.

-Sophia/Two Frys

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Vampire Bites Cookies

Pin It Vampire Bites Cookies

Vampire Bites Cookies
I have been obsessed with vampires since I was a teenager. It all started when I first read Bram Stoker's Dracula, followed by research I did on Vlad Tepes the Impaler back when I owned and published an underground fanzine called, Delirium. I remember the first time I saw Nosferatu and was horrified, but at the same time intrigued by this frail looking but powerful being. The ultimate vampires for me was falling in bloodlust over the Vampire Lestat and Armand after reading Anne Rice's books. This is my favorite vampire series and I have read it multiples times over the years.

These Vampire Bites Cookies are a tribute to vampires and fitting for Halloween/Samhain. I made a batch of Sweetopia's Vanilla Sugar Cookie recipe and included the full recipe below. I used Strawberry Jam as the filling and used a toothpick to make the bites. The cookies are tender, not too sweet, and the strawberry jam just adds the right amount of sweetness and added flavor. This is a perfect cookie to indulge in with coffee or tea.

Vanilla Sugar Cookie 
Ingredients
2 cups Unsalted Butter, softened

2 cups Sugar

2 Extra Large Eggs

3 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract

5 cups King Arthur All Purpose Flour

1 teaspoon Coarse Salt

Close up of Vampire Bites Cookies
Directions
Sift flour and add salt. Combine with spatula. Put aside.

Cream butter and sugar in a hand held mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment on low; 1-2 minutes.

Scrape sides of bowl with spatula and mix for a 10-15 seconds.

Add eggs one at a time, mix until incorporated. Scrape sides of bowl and mix for 5-10 seconds.

Add vanilla extract and mix on low until incorporated, about 20-25 seconds.

Slowly add flour mixture on low to combine. The dough is ready when it begins to clump around paddle attachment.

Roll dough into ball, cover with plastic wrap and chill in fridge for 1-2 hours.

Cut dough into 4 cuts, leaving unused dough covered with plastic wrap until ready to  use.

Use a medium size round cutter to make the shapes.

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Roll dough in between two sheets of parchment paper
Use 2 sheets of parchment paper with dough in between and roll with rolling pin until desired thickness is reached.

Place onto cookies sheets lined with parchment paper. Spoon 1 teaspoon of jam in the center of the cookies and place top dough and seal the edges together. Do not add too much of the jam or it will seep through the edges.

Take a toothpick and make two holes so it looks like a vampire bite. Repeat for each cookie.

Place cookies in the freezer for 5 minutes. The cookies hold their shape when you do this.

The vampire holes hold their shape as they bake.

Bake 12-15 minutes or until the edges have slightly browned.

Wait 2-3 minutes before transferring cookies on cooling racks to complete cooling.

When the cookies have cooled, take a toothpick and dip it in the jam and pull out one of the vampire bite holes to make it look like blood trickling down the cookie.

For further information:
Please visit, Baking Bites for the Vampire Cookie Recipe: http://bakingbites.com/2008/10/vampire-cookies/

Please visit, Sweetopia for the Vanilla Sugar Cookie Recipe: http://sweetopia.net/2009/12/sugar-cookie-recipe/

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Dexter Blood Spatter Cookies

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Dexter Blood Spatter Cookies

Dexter Blood Spatter Cookies
Dexter was one of my favorite shows and I bought the final season some months ago. I love the Blood Spatter Cookies at Annie's Eats and thought with Halloween upcoming, no better way to pay homage to my favorite serial killer so I made Dexter Blood Spatter Cookies. The Vanilla Sugar Cookie recipe is from Sweetopia. The cookies have a great vanilla taste and are not too sweet. I did not add baking powder since I did not want the cookies to spread and lose their shape in the oven.

Vanilla Sugar Cookie 
Ingredients
2 cups Unsalted Butter, softened

2 cups Granulated Sugar

2 Extra Large Eggs

3 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract

5 cups King Arthur All Purpose Flour

1 teaspoon Coarse Salt

Dexter Blood Spatter Cookies

Directions
Sift flour and add salt. Combine with spatula. Put aside.

Cream butter and sugar in a hand held mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment on low, 1-2 minutes.

Scrape sides of bowl with spatula and mix for a 10-15 seconds.

Add eggs one at a time, mix until incorporated. Scrape sides of bowl and mix for 5-10 seconds.

Add vanilla extract and mix on low until incorporated, about 15-20 seconds.

Slowly add flour mixture on low to combine. The dough is ready when it begins to clump around paddle attachment.

Cookies dry
Roll dough into ball, cover with plastic wrap and chill in fridge for 1-2 hours.

Cut dough into 4 cuts, leaving unused dough covered with plastic wrap in the fridge until ready to  use.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Use 2 sheets of parchment paper with dough in between and roll with rolling pin until desired thickness is reached.

Place cut out shapes on cookies sheets lined with parchment paper and put in freezer for 5 minutes. The cookies hold their shape when you do this.

Bake 12-15 minutes or until the edges have slightly browned.

Wait 2-3 minutes before transferring cookies on cooling racks to complete cooling.

Decorate once cookies have cooled.

Close-up view of Dexter Blood Spatter Cookies

 Royal Icing
Ingredients
4 Egg Whites

4 teaspoons Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed

6 cups Confectioners Sugar, sifted

Directions
In a medium size bowl, whisk together the egg whites and lemon juice.

Transfer to stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment.

Slowly add sifted sugar and beat on low until smooth.

If needed, you may add 1 teaspoon of water at a time until you reach the right consistency. Watch the Joy of Baking (link at the end) video for both Flooding Consistency and Piping Consistency Royal Icing. If you prefer a recipe using Meringue Powder, it is also available at this link.

I separated the icing in plastic containers with lids for tinting with Americolor Soft Gel Paste Food Color in Super Red and Super White. Keep the containers covered until you are ready to color. Royal Icing hardens fast so keep it covered when not in use.

To make the red, I add 3 drops and combine with a small spatula. Add 1 drop at a time until you reach the red you want. For the white, I added 2 drops to give it a pure white color.

Close-up view of the rest of the Dexter Blood Spatter Cookies
I transferred the icing immediately into Squeeze Bottles using a funnel to prevent it from spilling. Keep the squeeze bottle tips covered. If the Royal Icing hardens due to exposure to air, spray a little bit of water and shake bottle well holding the tip with your finger. Test the icing consistency on a paper towel before decorating the cookie.

I did the white borders around each cookie and waited 1/2 hour before flooding the cookie.

I used the remaining white icing by just adding a few squirts of water from a spray bottle and then shaked to combine. This made the Flood Consistency I needed to flood/fill the cookie. Add the water a little at a time until you reach a nice smooth consistency.

Use a paintbrush or cookie stick to reach edges and use tip of toothpick to pop any air bubbles.

I lined a cookie sheet with paper towels and placed the cookies on cooling tray over it.

Cookies cooling 
I transferred the red icing from a squeeze bottle to a medium sized bowl, and with a spray bottle spritzed it with more water to make it really runny.

I used a thin paintbrush and splattered away until I was happy with my mess.

Let dry for 5-6 hours or overnight.

For further information:
Please visit, Annie's Eats for the Blood Spatter Cookies: http://www.annies-eats.com/2012/10/29/blood-spatter-cookies/

Please visit, Sweetopia for the Vanilla Sugar Cookie Recipe: http://sweetopia.net/2009/12/sugar-cookie-recipe/

Please visit, Joy of Baking for the Royal Icing Recipe and Video Tutorial:
http://www.joyofbaking.com/RoyalIcing.html

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Heirloom Pumpkins

Pin It Heirloom Pumpkins

Heirloom Pumpkins
I was at my neighborhood Stop & Shop this weekend and I saw some really huge Heirloom Pumpkins in a variety of colors. I love the weird shapes and bumpy look to these pumpkins. When I started doing research on Pinterest on how to make the Heirloom Pumpkins, I was inspired by the Sweet Sugarbelle and Everyday Occasions blogs. I saved half of the dough from the Pumpkin Pie Spice Cookie recipe from my previous post, Autumn Cookies - Leaves and Acorns and made my own Pumpkin Pie Spice. Use any pumpkin cookie cutter you have.

The colors I did  - Heirloom Pumpkins
Pumpkin Pie Spice Sugar Cookie Recipe
Pumpkin Pie Spice
Ingredients
2 teaspoons Cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon Nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon Ginger

1/4 teaspoon Clove

1/4 teaspoon Allspice

Heirloom Pumpkins
Directions
Add spices in a small bowl and combine with a small spatula or fork.

Ingredients
1 cup (2 sticks) Unsalted Butter, softened

3/4 cup Light Brown Sugar, lightly packed

1/2 cup Turbinado Sugar

3/4 teaspoon Baking Powder

3/4 teaspoon Salt

3 1/2 teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice

1 Extra Large Egg

1 tablespoon Milk

2 3/4 cups Whole Wheat Flour

Some of the Pumpkin Pie Spice Sugar Cookies cooling
Directions
Using a stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment on medium speed, cream together butter and light brown sugar until light and fluffy; about 3-4 minutes.

Add turbinado sugar and cream for 1 minute.

Add baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice; mix until incorporated.

Add egg and milk; beat well.

Add flour little by little, mixing until combined.

Reddish Orange still wet Heirloom Pumpkins; color got darker as they dried  (see pics above)
The dough will be soft.

Roll dough into a ball, cover in plastic wrap and chill in fridge for 1-2 hours.

Preheat oven to 365 degrees.

Lightly sprinkle some of the flour on work space and rolling pin. Roll out dough and cut shapes.

Light Peach heirloom pumpkins
Transfer to baking sheets lined with parchment paper.

Chill in freezer for 5 minutes. This will ensure cookies keep their shape.

Bake for 10-13 minutes or until the edges have slightly browned.

Cool in baking sheets for 2-3 minutes before transferring to cooling racks.

Let cookies cool completely.

Reddish Orange and Light Peach Heirloom Pumpkins

Royal Icing
Ingredients
4 Egg Whites

4 teaspoons Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed

6 cups Confectioners Sugar, sifted

Spray bottle with Water

Light Green/Blue Heirloom Pumpkins

Directions
In a medium size bowl, whisk together the egg whites and lemon juice.

Transfer to stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment.

Slowly add sifted sugar and beat on low until smooth.

Step 1

Step 1: Close-up

You can spritz water 1-2 times at a time until you reach the right consistency. Watch the Joy of Baking (link at the end) video for both Flooding Consistency and Piping Consistency Royal Icing. If you prefer a recipe using Meringue Powder, it is also available at this link.

Step 2: Fill the center and then the sides
Step 2: connect the top and bottoms. Wait a few minutes then fill. Use the brown
Royal Icing to pipe/fill the top of the Pumpkin

I separated the icing in 5 plastic containers with lids for tinting with Wilton Gel Colors in Reddish Orange, Light Peach, Light Green/Blue, Tan and Brown. Please see the Everyday Occasions post for instructions on mixing the colors. I came up with a different color palette, but was not very precise when I mixed the colors together so I got different results. I have a lot to learn about mixing colors together.

Dip a toothpick in the gel and then into the icing and combine with a small spatula. Repeat until you reach the color you want. Use a clean toothpick each time so have plenty handy. Keep the other containers covered until you are ready to color. Royal Icing hardens fast so keep it covered when not in use.
Tan Heirloom Pumpkins
I transferred the icing immediately into Squeeze Bottles using a funnel to prevent it from spilling. I poured the piping consistency Royal Icing into small squeeze bottles leaving what I needed to fill/flood the cookie in the container. I then made the fill/flood consistency with water using the spritz bottle by spritzing 1-2 times, stirring with spatula and then repeating until it was smooth. I immediately transferred the Royal Icing into large squeeze bottles, which have a wider tip perfect for filling/flooding cookies.

Light Green/Blue and Tan Heirloom Pumpkins
Be sure to keep the squeeze bottle tips covered. If the Royal Icing hardens due to exposure to air, spray a little bit of water and shake bottle well holding the tip with your finger. Test the icing consistency on a paper towel before decorating the cookie.

I did the outlines in sections waiting 2 minutes before filling/flooding each one to get the outline effect on the Heirloom Pumpkins.

Use a paint brush or cookie stick to reach edges and use the tip of a toothpick to pop any air bubbles.

Let dry for 5-6 hours or overnight.

Heirloom Pumpkins drying

I use the Pumpkin Pie Spice Sugar Cookie recipe from Life's a Batch
http://lifesabatch.com/?p=1013

I use the Royal Icing Recipe from Joy of Baking:
http://www.joyofbaking.com/RoyalIcing.html

Everyday Occasions was my inspiration for the Heirloom Pumpkins:
http://jennysteffens.blogspot.com/2011/10/heirloom-pumpkin-sugar-cookies-tips-for.html

Sweet Subarbelle was my inspiration to make the outlines of the Heirloom Pumpkins:
http://www.sweetsugarbelle.com/2012/09/the-great-pumpkin-cookie-makeover/

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Autumn Cookies - Leaves and Acorns

Pin It Autumn Cookies - Leaves and Acorns

Autumn Cookies - Leaves and Acorns
I love Autumn almost as much as Winter, but this year New York is unseasonably warm and hardly very few cool, crisp days. I have not baked anything since June, and it was great to get back into the groove. However, the leaves are starting to turn beautiful hues of reds, oranges, yellows and browns and I was inspired to bake. I used leaf and acorn cutters for the Autumn cookies. To keep in the theme of Fall, the dough is a Pumpkin Pie Spice Sugar Cookie recipe from Life's a Batch (see below for link). The rich texture comes from the Whole Wheat Flour, Turbinado and Light Brown Sugars. I made my own Pumpkin Pie Spice and the cookies smell and taste amazing. I hope you try this recipe.

Pumpkin Pie Spice
Ingredients
2 teaspoons Cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon Nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon Ginger

1/4 teaspoon Clove

1/4 teaspoon Allspice

Directions
Add spices in a small bowl and combine with a small spatula or fork.

Close-up of Acorn Cookies

Pumpkin Pie Spice Sugar Cookie Recipe
Ingredients
1 cup (2 sticks) Unsalted Butter, softened

3/4 cup Light Brown Sugar, lightly packed

1/2 cup Turbinado Sugar

3/4 teaspoon Baking Powder

3/4 teaspoon Salt

3 1/2 teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice

1 Extra Large Egg

1 tablespoon Milk

2 3/4 cups Whole Wheat Flour

Close-up of Leaf Cookie

Directions
Using a stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment on medium speed, cream together butter and light brown sugar until light and fluffy; about 3-4 minutes.

Add turbinado sugar and cream for 1 minute.

Add baking powder, salt and pumpkin pie spice; mix until incorporated.

Add egg and milk; beat well.

Add flour little by little, mixing until combined.

Close-up of another Leaf Cookie

The dough will be soft.

Roll dough into a ball, cover in plastic wrap and chill in fridge for 1-2 hours.

Preheat oven to 365 degrees.

I used Hodgson Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
Lightly sprinkle some of the flour on work space and rolling pin. Roll out dough and cut shapes.

Transfer to baking sheets lined with parchment paper.

Chill in freezer for 5 minutes. This will ensure cookies keep their shape.

Bake for 10-13 minutes or until the edges have slightly browned.

Cool in baking sheets for 2-3 minutes before transferring to cooling racks.

Let cookies cool completely.

Spices: Cinnamon, Clove, Nutmeg, Ginger, Allspice

Pumpkin Pie Spice 

Royal Icing
Ingredients
2 Egg Whites

2 1/2 teaspoons Lemon Juice, freshly squeezed

4 cups Confectioners Sugar, sifted

Pumpkin Pie Spice dough

Pumpkin Spice dough wrapped and ready to go in fridge to chill

Directions
In a medium size bowl, whisk together the egg whites and lemon juice.

Transfer to stand or hand held mixer with paddle attachment.

Slowly add sifted sugar and beat on low until smooth.

Leaves cooling
You can add 1 tablespoon of water at a time until you reach the right consistency. Watch the Joy of Baking (link at the end) video for both Flooding Consistency and Piping Consistency Royal Icing. If you prefer a recipe using Meringue Powder, it is also available at this link. I used half of the dough and made a small batch of the Piping Consistency Royal Icing and saved the remaining dough for another recipe this weekend.

Acorns cooling
I separated the icing in 3 plastic containers with lids for tinting with Wilton Gel Colors in Orange and Brown. To make the dark brown, I added 1 small drop of Black to the Brown color. Dip a toothpick in the gel and then into the icing and combine with a small spatula. Repeat until you reach the color you want. Use a clean toothpick each time so have plenty handy. Keep the other containers covered until you are ready to color. Royal Icing hardens fast so keep it covered when not in use.

Small Squeeze Bottles
I transferred the icing immediately into Squeeze Bottles using a funnel to prevent it from spilling. Keep the squeeze bottle tips covered. If the Royal Icing hardens due to exposure to air, spray a little bit of water and shake bottle well holding the tip with your finger. Test the icing consistency on a paper towel before decorating the cookie.

I did borders around each cookie and let dry for 1-2 hours.

Piped borders on each cookie and let dry before flooding cookie
I used the remaining icing by just adding a few squirts of water from a spray bottle and then shake to combine. This made the Flood Consistency I needed to flood/fill the cookie. Add the water a little at a time until you reach a nice smooth consistency.

Use a toothpick or cookie stick to reach edges and use tip of toothpick to pop any air bubbles.

Let dry for 5-6 hours or overnight.

Please visit, Life's A Batch for the sugar cookie recipe: http://lifesabatch.com/?p=1013

Please visit, Joy of Baking for the Royal Icing Recipe and Video Tutorial:
http://www.joyofbaking.com/RoyalIcing.html

Enjoy!

-Sophia/Two Frys