I like baking, but am not the most adept baker. For one, I often do not pay enough attention to directions, nor am I ever able to prepare things in the prescribed amount of time. Instead I work through a process of trial, error, and problem solving skills. Case in point: I started off this recipe as an attempt to make penguin cookies.
Vanilla Icebox Cookie Dough:
2 and 1/4 cups plus 5 tablespoons of flour
16 tablespoons/2 sticks of butter, softened
3/4 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of powdered sugar
2 egg yolks
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
Ninja Turtle Additions:
decorating gel (black, purple, orange, red, and blue)
neon food coloring (green and blue)
Makes 4 dozen cookies; 16 by the time you feed the wonky looking ones to the dog, throw out the ones you broke or under cooked, and get rid of the ones you used sharpie on just to see how it looks.
Baking Your Turtles
1. Cream the two sticks of softened butter, 1/2 cup of powdered sugar, and 3/4 cup of regular sugar together in a large bowl. If you have a fancy mixer, I recommend using that. If you’re waiting to get one off your wedding registry like me, use a heavy spoon. I prefer wooden because it harkens back to the olden days and won’t bend like shoddy metal spoons.
2. Mix in the two egg yolks one yolk at a time. DO NOT accidentally drop one in the sink and assume it will go down the drain like any other food substance.
3. Mix in the vanilla extract. This will be the easiest and most drama free part of the cookie making process.
4. Move 1/3 of the mixture to another bowl. Freak out when you realize you’re an English major who is extremely bad at math. Mix in one cup of flour, spilling flour everywhere and finally realizing why people have ceramic bowls in their kitchen labeled flour rather than using a bag. Stop when you have a dough.
5. In the original bowl with the remaining 2/3 of the mixture, add 1 and 1/4 cup of flour, plus five additional teaspoons of flour. Add seven drops of neon green and two drops of neon blue food coloring. If you do not have awesome neon food coloring like I do, regular food coloring will do, although it won’t be nearly as cool. Stop when you have a dough.
NOTE: If the dough is too thin, add flour, if it is too thick or dry, add melted butter. You want a nice doughy consistency. Due to my inability to read/the 1 blending in with the 1 1/4 in the initial recipe, I missed a cup of flour when making the green dough and had to add a ton of flour to rectify the problem. It was not pretty.
6. Roll the vanilla dough into a long log. Flatten the green dough into a rectangle the same length as the vanilla dough. This is easiest with a rolling pin. If you do not own one, again it’s sitting on my registry, be super ghetto and use a beer bottle.
7. Place the vanilla dough in the middle of the green dough. Flatten the green dough on either side (see photo above). Wrap around and secure the green dough around the vanilla dough. Roll lightly to remove the crease created. Cover in saran wrap and refrigerate for 15 minutes. Curse your inability to use saran wrap properly.
8. Preheat oven to 325 degrees far too early.
9. After you have checked your Twitter and made sure it took 15 minutes, remove the dough from the refrigerator. Cut log into 1/4 inch slices and organize on two baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Laugh when you realize your white dough isn’t round. Decide penguin cookies look like Ninja Turtle faces and change game plan to make those instead.
10. Place baking sheets back in refrigerator to cool for another 10 minutes. Oven will have preheated way before this.
11. Remove from refrigerator and place in oven. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes or until cookies don’t taste or look raw anymore. Let rest for 3 minutes and then move to cooling rack. Go to bed because it is now 3:00AM.
Decorating Your Turtles
1. Once cookies have fully cooled, you can begin decorating. FINALLY!
2. With black decorating gel, draw a black line around the white dough. Add in teeth, nose, and eyes with this same gel. Alternating with the purple, blue, orange, and red gel, add a bandana around the eyes.
DO NOT try to save time and buy Wilton’s food decorating pens. Not only did one of the pens come pre-dried out, but they were awful and barely worked. I got four turtles horribly decorated before the black pen wouldn’t even work anymore. I even compared them to a cookie I sharpied on just to see my expectations versus the results. Pathetic.
3. Eat and enjoy your heroes in a half shell. Or in this case, no shell.