A few years ago I tried mastering icing cookies. There are tons of beautiful icing cookies out there and they seem so easy to make! But when I tried it, I realised that there was a lot of technical details involved to make the perfect icing cookie! Even when I've learned enough tips to know what cookie base is the best, how to make them flat and sharp looking (I've obviously not bothered doing that here but I'll tell you how) and getting the correct royal icing consistency, I still lack the creativity to design beautiful cookies! Someone said that Icing Cookies are a work of art, they can say that again!
2 weeks ago I've received Chef'n Cookie Stamp to review. I was hoping to do this with Abby as i know she loves to cut out cookies and she would definitely love to stamp out patterns on them too, but there was so much going on during our holiday, I ended up doing these after school holiday has finished. Nevermind, there are plenty of opportunities to bake together, May bank holiday is just a few days away!
Chef'n Cookie Stamp (rrp £10.00) comes in a neat container, storing 5 assorted stamps, including flower, crown, star, heart and butterfly shapes. It also comes with a cookie dough recipe. The lid of the container cleverly acts as the cookie cutter, cutting out 6.5cm diameter cookies. The cutter and stamps are made of BPA free plastic.
To stamp the cookies, simply attach one of the stamp to the cookie cutter, cut the dough and then press the blue "button" on the top to stamp the pattern into the dough.
I tried out their cookie dough recipe in my first attempt, but because I was too lazy to convert the cups to grams, the dough was dry and the cookies came out with wrinkles. I just can't do cups! On my second attempt I chose another cookie recipe (I'll have to give their recipe a try again, after conversion!), which would have yield cookies that are flat and sharp if I had frozen the cut out shapes first until they have hardened. I didn't bother doing that either as I just wanted to put the cookies in the oven and I was baking cupcakes on the same day as well (I guess I'm not fit to be a baker!) But for a sharper edge I really recommend a colder dough to cut, then freeze the shapes first before sending them straight to the oven (which I did for Abby's 5th birthday).
Making these cookies are fun! The patterns comes out sharp, even for the crown and butterfly. Just make sure you dust the stamps well if the dough has softened a bit too much. My tip is not to stamp the cookies too hard especially if you make thick cookies like me (I need this rolling pin! In fact, I'm buying it right now!), or the edge of the stamps will show.
With the stamps outlining the shapes, decorating them with royal icing become much easier as I don't have a whole pattern to think of! They are good enough to just colour in, or you can add the minor details around each to elaborate the designs a bit. I went for pastel colours and overdid the dots and wriggly lines I think. Do they look like children party cookies?! Now that gives me an idea for Clay's birthday next month!
If you have to produce a lot of cookies in a short time and don't want to do too much designing on a whole cookie surface, or you want a special effect to normal icing cookies, you should definitely get Chef'n Cookie Stamps. They are easy to clean and use, and they also come in Christmas and Winter versions, perfect for the time when you have to bake a lot of cookies to give away (perfect teacher gifts!).