Monday, March 29, 2010

Because Every Holiday Deserves A Cookie

In honor of Easter, and partially in honor of me being pregnant and requiring a constant inflow of sugar,* I decided we should decorate Easter cookies this year. So I broke out my Swedish great-grandmother's recipe, which I had attempted for the first time at Christmas, and made a small batch of dough.

Last time my little hand-mixer nearly had a breakdown when asked to combine all the wet and dry ingredients, so it was a joy to use my shiny new Kitchen-Aid. Landon served as sous chef. He quickly became intoxicated with the newfound deliciousness of cookie dough, though he refused to eat it directly from the beater, preferring instead to use his teaspoon. His mother had no such qualms.

The dough chilled overnight on Saturday while my mom, sister, and I went to see Phantom of the Opera. My mom loves music and soundtracks were often blasting through the downstairs of our house as she cleaned or did dishes. Phantom was a favorite and my sister and I knew all the words way before we had any idea what the story was about. When I was in 9th grade the play came to Houston, and even though we totally couldn't afford the tickets, my mom took my sister and me. It was the first play I ever saw and though I've now seen and loved many others, Phantom will always be special. And I'm glad to say the show in Austin on Saturday was fantastic.

On Sunday my mom headed home early in the morning and Landon donned last year's bunny ears (from my beautifully labeled "Easter" bin) to assist me with the baking.

Our Spring cookie cutter assortment consisted of a sheep, duck, bunny, and egg. The egg was my favorite; the sheep was a total pain in the ass to cut and transfer without messing up the fluffy fur. So guess which one Landon liked the best?

The sheeps.

Here they are, all ready to decorate!

Except JP had a group meeting that went 3 hours longer than he predicted, so the cookies remained naked for some time. While we waited, Landon and I did our best to soak up the absolutely gorgeous 75 degree weather. I plugged my work laptop into an outlet on the back deck and doc reviewed for 3 hours while Landon baked me many delicious treats in his new play kitchen (a fabulous craigslist find; more on it later).

When JP finally came home we cooked out hot dogs to eat with potato salad and a delicious green bean and cherry tomato salad that I found on Smitten Kitchen. The cookie decorating (with lots of homemade icing) served as dessert.

Such focus.

Landon managed to finish 4 cookies. JP completed 9, shown below, though I think only 4 count as actually being decorated. But he did put Landon to bed and then cleaned up the kitchen table, so I suppose he gets a little extra credit for that.

I was left to decorate the remainder. Many a sheep ended up with an identical twin.

They are so delicious. It was lots of fun and something I expect will be turned into tradition. And hopefully the amount of work involved will keep me from purchasing cookie cutters for Thanksgiving, Halloween, and the 4th of July.

* I'm not kidding, I've never craved sweet things like I have during this pregnancy. I had my glucose tolerance test last week. I passed, of course - believe me, if my body was having any trouble processing sugar I would know it by now.


  1. I love your holiday coordinated table cloth and how it perfectly complements the decorated cookies!

  2. So much fun!! I love decorating cookies.

    I can't believe how grown up Landon looks! What a big boy.

  3. Fabulous cookies! And I'm with you-- I like sugar already, but I'm at 26 weeks and I swear I could just eat spoonfuls of it straight from the sugar bowl...


  4. That's the 'sugar' part of sugar and spice and everything nice for that little bun you're baking!

  5. What kind of frosting do you use for cookies?

  6. It's just a homemade sugar frosting -- a bunch of powdered sugar, a little milk (I use skim because it's what's in our fridge, but you're probably supposed to use a thicker one) until it's the right consistency, and a teaspoon or so of vanilla. Then I pour it into cups and add the food coloring. It's sweet, but the cookies aren't very so they go together perfectly. Plus I love how it dries hard and thin to make a colorful second layer. Delicious!

  7. My family and I are real fans your Mexican cheesecake appetizer so I'd really like it if you would share the sugar cookie recipe too. Can you, pleeeeeeezzzzeeeeee!!!???? Or did you and I missed it somehow...??