There are things that I can do well and something that I can never get right. Decorating cookies is in between. Over the years, the art of decorating cookies has exploded to massive scales and everyone seems to know how to whip up icing and slap it onto a plain sugar cookie. I was totally clueless till I came to America where cookie cutters of all forms and sizes are everywhere and bookstores shelves are stocked up with every cookies book imaginable. Everytime I pick up a magazine or book and see those beautiful colors piped onto the cookie, my jaw drops and a hush sigh is let out. I really admire those people who can do all the icing decoration with multiple colors and patterns and also deliver a full tray of it! How do they do it?
I did attend some of the Wilton decorating classes long time ago and before I had kids. After the classes, my interest wavered partly due to the fact that there was no one eating my cake or cookies and I was lazy! Decorating cookies is a feat to me and I am like Prince D with a color pen....... getting all messy with my hands and still cannot draw anything! However said, having kids do change a person, especially a woman and everyone knows, kids love cookies and with the X'mas season around, how can I not do anything like the other moms and make my kids miss out on all the fun of eating a decorated cookie?
One day Missy E came home from school with an assignment. She had to bring in everything she can find that spells with the alphabet 'G'. The idea of Gingerbread man came instantly to my mind and my mood in cookie making was suddenly revived! Throughout the process, I was imagining how happy she and her friends will be to have these cookies for snack time. Despite knowing that my piping skills is zero to nothing, I gathered up my guts and whip up the icing. Making the cookie was the easy part. The usual mixing of sugar, brown sugar, molasses, butter and vegetable shortening was done with the mixer and the flour was slowly folded in. Nothing complex. It was the mixing of the icing sugar with meringue powder and water that kept my attention locked in. I don't really fancy handling icing cream as I find it messy just like melted chocolate and the consistency of it can change drastically with an extra drop of water! I managed to decorate 18 gingerbread people before my palm starts aching. Although the results were amateurish, I am glad that I did it and thanks to Missy E and Prince D, my piping and decorating tools will not see the doomsday!