I originally made these watercolor cookies for Easter a few weeks back, and because I wasn’t sure how they would turn out I didn’t really have any intention on blogging about them. For all I knew it was going to be a total disaster, albeit a delicious one, and I really just wanted to attempt them for fun. As it turns out, although they’re time consuming, they’re actually surprisingly easy to make and REALLY fun to decorate! Justin, my super anti-crafty boyfriend, even voluntarily joined in on the fun – if that tells you anything. I ended up packaging up a few in cute little bags for my family, and think they’d be adorable as edible gifts for Mother’s Day!
A few tips for making a batch that wows:
:: Create a “test cookie” to test out your colours. Add more food colouring, or vanilla, until you achieve the colours you desire
:: Use 3-4 colours max. in order to keep your batch consistent
:: Once you find a few patterns or styles you like, stick with them and don’t be afraid to repeat them on a few different cookies
:: We found the simpler the pattern, the better
:: Case in point: stripes and dots were the clear winners here
:: Dots in the form of flowers are especially impressive as they’re easy to create, but look involved
:: Remember that watercolours are forgiving – embrace their natural imperfections!
Grab the recipe and steps below…
Beautiful watercolor cookies that are ridiculously fun to make! Perfect for all ages.
Your favorite sugar cookie recipe (I used this one)
Square or circle cookie cutter
White fondant (I picked mine up at Michael's)
White icing (store bought is fine)
Unused paint brushes
Clear vanilla extract (or almond extract)
Gel food coloring (I picked mine up at Michael's)
Bake your sugar cookies according to the directions. Important note: omit the baking powder if it calls for it. Baking powder makes the cookies puff and spread, which we don't want. Let your cookies cool completely.
In the meantime, roll out your fondant until it's 1/8" thick. If you're using the same rolling pin you used to roll out the dough, clean and dry it first so that no grease or moisture is transferred to the fondant.
Using the same cookie cutter, cut out the same number of fondant shapes as you have cookies. Place them on a sheet of parchment paper and let them dry out a bit for an hour or two (or overnight if you prefer!)
Next, place a small amount of icing to the back of your fondant shape and "glue" it to the top of a cookie. Using a small square of parchment paper between your palm and the fondant, gently rub in small circles until the fondant sticks.
In the meantime, mix together your watercolor colours using a tiny bit of gel food coloring and vanilla (or almond) extract. Test out your colours on a test cookie until you achieve the shades you're after. Important note: do not use water! Water will make the cookies soggy. The alcohol in the extracts will evaporate leaving you with beautiful shades.
Decorate your cookies using the paint brushes, let dry for 30 minutes and enjoy!