Owls are the latest rage. Didn’t you know? Just go in any department store (in the children’s section) or baby store and you’ll see them. They are all cute and cuddly and come in many different shapes and sizes. (I apparently missed this bandwagon when I decorated my son’s nursery last year. Sadness! We did a jungle theme instead, and it’s worked out just fine. Next kid will get owls.) I made these owl cookies because I wanted to make a fall cookie for Haniela’s giveaway, but you could make them for any occasion–just change the color to suit whatever the function is. Of course you’ll need an owl cookie cutter, but other than that, the rest is your own prerogative.
I find that baking the cookies and getting the royal icing together the day before works really well. That way, the colors can deepen overnight and you’ll have brighter brights and deeper hues. You can find my favorite royal icing recipe here. And my sugar cookie recipe comes from the book Cookie Craft. If you haven’t checked this book out, I highly recommend it. It’s like a textbook with all kinds of information and helpful hints and tricks. I won’t post their recipe, but you can always look online for a sugar cookie recipe to use instead.
I thought having a step-by-step tutorial on decorating these owl cookies would be helpful to you, so if you did want to make them, you would know how. (When I first started decorating sugar cookies, I wish I had a tutorial to look at. I had to do so much by trial and error!) So, here it goes. You need the following decorating tools: #2 tips, piping bags (plastic or vinyl), squeeze bottles, and toothpicks (to pop the small air bubbles, should you have them).
Okay, so as I’m writing out these instructions, I realized that there is a picture missing. I am so sorry!!! I’ve attempted to fix my mistake by having a 1A and 1B. Hopefully I didn’t confuse you.
1A. Outline the cookie in chocolate brown.
1B. Flood the cookie using a thinner icing. Wait–at least 30 minutes before going to the next step. Preferably you should wait an hour.
2. Outline the white of the eyes using white icing and fill it in. Then while it is still wet, apply the dots for the pupils using black icing. Wait. (See step 1B.)
3. Outline and flood the breast using orange, gold, yellow, or any light fall color. Using flood icing, create the ruffled feathers using a V out of a darker or lighter color. Wait again.
4. Using the color orange, create the beaks and legs. Add the wings next to the breast (you can omit this step). Let dry overnight before stacking, shipping, or packaging.
Decorating cookies takes patience and time. You can always find little things to do while you wait for these to dry–do the dishes, fold laundry, read a blog post, take a walk, nicely tell the neighbor girls to stop picking the green tomatoes off your plant and throwing them at each other–you know, every day things like that. These decorated cookies will last about a week, since the royal icing acts as a preservative. I have packaged them and then put them in a freezer bag to freeze and they turned out fine later, but they taste best fresh.
Please leave a comment in the comment section and let me know if this was helpful to you or if there is any question you might have. Good luck and happy decorating! xoxo