Gingerbread Hello Kitties and decorating cookies with cookie dough!

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I’ve been thinking about these cookies for so long, I don’t remember if they’re gingerbread because I wanted dark kitties, or if they’re dark kitties because I wanted gingerbread. You may think it’s weird to make gingerbread in September. I don’t. And you won’t either, once you try this one.

It’s a recipe by Martha Stewart so you may know it already. I saw it on Smitten Kitchen last year, made it for the holidays, and loved it.

How can you go wrong with that much spice?

These cookies are so tasty, spicy but not too spicy. I also wasn’t building kitty houses, so I reduced the baking time by a couple minutes to get soft, melt in your mouth cookies.

This year I’m making gingerbread houses for the first time, can’t wait ;)

So now we have the flavor covered, I’m gonna tell you about these cookies’ shape. As you may have noticed, I’m a lover of all Hello Kitty stuff. I already had an unused kitty cutter (on the right), but I saw this other one at the Sanrio store in Little Tokyo, LA (posts on my trip are coming, by the way!). I was a bit hesitant because of its huge size, but I ended up buying it, and I’m so glad I did.

When making character cookies, proportions are key. Move the eye 1/4 inch to the right, and your Hello Kitty won’t be Hello Kitty any more. This is why it’s so helpful to have a cutter that marks the features as well as the shape.
Although, with regular royal icing decoration, those features would be lost. That’s why I thought of these cookies to try this new awesome decoration technique.

Yep, that’s cookie dough!

I read about it on this post by Miss Cuit, and since then I had been eager to try it. Basically you take you leftover cookie dough, thin it down it water, color it and pipe it on your cookies. Then you bake them. It’s that easy!

Of course this time, I had to use a different dough because of the color. But it was still much faster than royal icing. I’m not sure this technique would work with bigger surfaces, but it’s great for outlining. The dough is pretty easy to pipe and it doesn’t spread much.

You can see I was a bit indecisive with the noses. My tip was too big, so the outlining didn’t look right. Other than that, I was really happy with my cookies and they were super fun to make!

And yes, I did make some with the small cutter, but they obviously weren’t as precise as the other ones. And, I know this sounds stupid, but I kept forgetting which the good one was.

Anyway… go make some cookies. You won’t regret it.


Gingerbread cookies

Recipe by Martha Stewart
Yield: a dozen 4 inch cookies
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground pepper
3/4 tsp coarse salt
4 oz butter
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup unsulfured molasses (I used golden corn syrup)
1. Mix flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and spices until thoroughly combined.
2. Beat butter and brown sugar on medium speed until fluffy. Mix in the egg and molasses. Reduce speed to low. Add sifted flour mixture; mix until just combined. Wrap dough in plastic and refrigerate until cold, about 1 hour.
3. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
4. Roll out dough on a lightly floured work surface to a 1/3-inch thickness. Cut out cookies, and place on baking sheets lined with parchment paper, spaced 2 inches apart. Refrigerate until firm, about 15 minutes.
5. Bake cookies until they look dry rather than shiny, about 12 minutes.

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