This week I went crazy and made two different kinds of Valentine’s Day themed cookies, both using the same large open star tip. They were so delicious and pretty that I just had to share them with you.
Four hours before my daughter’s dance class on Monday I got an email from the dance studio, informing me that they were planning on doing the Valentines party that night and to please bring a little something for everyone. Four hours before?! Really?! But I had planned to make these adorable chocolate dipped heart shaped meringue cookies. Meringue takes 2 hours to bake! There’s no way I had time to do those for both of my daughter’s classes when we had to leave the house in 3 1/2 hours. Except, I already had my heart set on these cookies. So I made them anyways, resolving that I could leave a bit earlier to swing by Target on the way to the studio if the cookies went south.
But this time, the stars aligned in my favor, and I actually got them done! Except for the chocolate dipped, sprinkles on top part. There was just no time. But you know what? The cookies didn’t even need it; they were delicious all on their own. Crunchy on the outside, yet chewy on the inside. Just enough sweetness that literally melts in your mouth. Delicate and light, so you don’t feel weighed down by them.To compensate for the lack of sprinkles, I added a touch of food coloring to give them a soft pink color. I also added a teaspoon of clear vanilla extract at the end, for a little flavor. Peppermint extract would be heavenly in these too.
I already had mini treat bags on hand, and 1 cookie fit inside perfectly.They are delicate though, so if you let your kids hand them out, be prepared for some of them to die terrible deaths.I had doubled the recipe because I was baking for a total of 3 classes. But I still had a ton left over because the recipe makes a surprising amount of cookies. So I packaged up the rest to give to our mailman and our neighbors.I’ve been dabbling in chalkboard art lately, and these tags are the result of such endeavors. Aren’t they pretty?I wish I hadn’t been quite so rushed when piping the cookies out, because most of them had little tails sticking out at the bottom since I didn’t have time to smooth them all down. But aside from that, I was really happy with how they turned out.Aside from the long baking time, these cookies are actually really easy to make. This was my first time making meringue, so speaking novice to novice: you can make these! The mixer and the big open star piping tip really do all the work for you.
The second Valentine’s Day cookie that I made this week were these red velvet rose sandwich cookies. I got invited to go to an informal women’s event at my church and everyone was supposed to bring a little something. I was tempted to just make more meringues, but I wanted to try something new. Red velvet seems perfect for Valentine’s Day: chocolate, red, and delicious. So these rose sandwich cookies were an easy pick. To make them dairy free so I could eat them, I swapped almond milk for the buttermilk, also adding 2 tablespoons of white vinegar to the batter. Do not add the vinegar to the almond milk; it causes the milk to separate and curdle. My marshmallow fluff frosting was the perfect companion for these chocolate beauties.
My husband is not a red velvet person; he says the texture is weird and he can taste the artificial color. I think he’s weird. But I have noticed that most men don’t really like red velvet, but most women love it. Mars and Venus.I won’t lie to you–these cookies were time consuming because you have to pipe out each cookie. I popped 3 icing bags because of the pressure it took to squeeze the cookie dough out. You have to work in small batches of dough in the piping bag to make it easier to manage. Refilling used piping bags is M E S S Y. There was red dough everywhere.It took a couple batches before I figured out the right bake time (8 minutes in my electric oven). The cookies are soft, so they look & feel a little wet in the middle when you first take them out. After they cool though, they are the perfect consistency. They are sturdy enough to be made into delicious sandwiches but moist and soft enough to melt in your mouth. And the flavor is allll chocolate.My 3 year old called them “Belle and Beast” cookies. They would be perfect for a Beauty and the Beast themed birthday party, or a general princess party. Or a garden themed party. Or a Wednesday when you have a chocolate craving.They were a hit at the women’s event that I went to. The best moment was when I was asked where I bought them from and I got to say that I made them myself.