Baking - Cookies, Decorating

Flooding Cookies

I often admire the bright, clean look of cookies that have been decorated with royal icing. They are so attractive that you almost don’t want to eat them and mess up their perfect appearance. I have been wanting to try and make them for a while now, but I actually don’t often bake sweets unless there is a specific purpose; for example, a special event. Well, this weekend I had my chance. My husband and I were going to attend a party to celebrate life – most notably celebrating people who have survived breast and other forms of cancer, people who are still fighting cancer, and just the amazingness of life in general.

I decided to make some simple sugar cookies and use the flooding method to make pink ribbons as decoration. I looked up flood icing, which is basically royal icing that has some extra water to make it more runny to ‘flood’ an iced outline.

I made a dark pink icing for the outline, with the thought that it would look better to see the definition of the ribbon crossing itself. Then I made a lighter pink icing for flooding. When I first made the icing in the morning it seemed to be a good consistency; not too thick for a small piping tip. But when I went to use it in the evening it seemed to be thicker. I had already loaded the piping tool by the time I discovered this and decided to do the best I could with what I had, because I didn’t want to go to the trouble of taking it all out again. I had made the lighter pink icing runnier than the dark pink to begin with, but even so, it too was a bit thick for the purpose of flooding. It wasn’t a flood so much as a sploosh that needed a bit of spreading to reach the edges. The perils of not testing things in advance!

It ended up taking quite a bit longer than I anticipated, and my outlines didn’t have the super smooth look that I like so much, but I enjoyed the challenge and feel that I’ve learned something for the next time I try it. Practice makes perfect, so I just need to find a few more events to attend! Or I could just bite the bullet and make them for fun, I’m sure my family wouldn’t mind!

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