This past week has definitely been a bit of a whirlwind. After a lot of thinking, I decided to leave my job in pursuit of a new one. I’m definitely going to miss my old job and all of the wonderful people that I worked with, but I will be starting a new position soon which I think is simply the next step in my career at a new company where I will be able to take a bit more ownership and grow more as a person. Kramer and I leave soon for our trip to Aruba, after which I will be starting at my new company. I’m really excited! I’ve been able to meet with some of my new team and I think that I’m going to fit right in. Now I just have to decide what baked goods to bring in on my first day!
There is yet another cause for celebration this week: Star Wars Episode 1 is being re-released in theaters in 3D! Now, I know a lot of people take issue with Episode 1, myself included, but come on, guys, it’s Star Wars! I know that Episodes 1-3 are kind of ridiculous, and that they all have Jar Jar Binks in them (yikes), but they’re still a part of the series and I, for one, can’t help but love them. Plus, I really can’t wait to see the pod racer scene in 3D – it was meant for 3D, right? Anyway, to mark this special occasion, I’ve made these Stormtrooper Sugar Cookies to share with you. I love these little guys. I bought both sets of Star Wars cookie cutters on Black Friday last year, and only got around to using them recently, but I am so glad that I had the foresight to buy them. I’ve got a few more Star Wars surprises in store for this week, but for now, enjoy these Storm Troopers and hopefully you can make some yourselves this week in preparation for the Big Day!
First and foremost, check out the latest episode of The Untitled Webseries from our friend Morgan Evans – we’re in it! Where do we pick up our Oscars?
This is the cake that my office got me on my last day from Momofuku – thanks again, guys!
And, most importantly, I wanted to show off this incredibly awesome sweater that my friend Valerie gave me. I was born to wear Fozzie Bear.
Whisk together your flour, salt, and baking powder.
Cream together your butter, shortening, and sugar.
Add in your egg and vanilla.
Then gradually add in your flour, scraping the bowl as needed.
Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for a minimum of 4 hours.
When ready, roll out your dough to 1/4-inch thick on a lightly floured surface. When using these Star Wars cookie cutters, it helps to dip the lightly in flour before cutting the cookies, to keep the dough from sticking to the delicate markings.
How cool does that look?
Bake at 325 degrees F for 10-12 minutes, until set and lightly golden.
Whisk together your royal icing ingredients while your cookies set.
I like to use a squeeze bottle to outline my cookies with a firmer white icing.
Then I use a thinner white icing to fill them in, followed by a thicker grey icing for some of the detail (just use a bit of black food coloring at first to make grey, then go all out for the black).
They will need to set for about an hour before they are ready to be packaged up.
And there you have it – Stormtrooper sugar cookies!
- 1¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ cups (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons cold vegetable shortening
- ⅔ cup sugar
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
- 2 large egg whites
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- black food coloring
- First, make the sugar cookies. Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Set aside. Beat together the butter, shortening, and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add in the egg and vanilla and beat until just combined. Add in the flour mixture and mix until just moistened. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours - this is important so that your dough is firm enough to cut into shapes. I let mine sit overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line and/or grease two baking sheets. Dust a clean work surface with flour and unwrap the chilled dough, placing it on your work surface. Roll half of the dough to about ¼ inch thick, and cut out the cookies into whatever shape you like (in my case, storm troopers). Transfer the cut-outs to the baking sheet and continue to roll the dough out and cut the cookies out until you have run out of dough.
- Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes, until set but not browned. They should just be ever so slightly golden on the very edges. Remove them from the oven and let cool on the cookie sheets for at least 5 minutes. Transfer the cookies to another surface to cool completely.
- Now, make the royal icing. Whisk together the sugar, egg white, and lemon juice until it is completely smooth and slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. The mixture should have the texture of a glaze. If it's too thin, add some more sugar. If it's too thick, add a few more drops of lemon juice or water.
- To make thick icing for outlining the cookies, place some of the icing in another bowl and add more confectioners' sugar until thickened, but not too thick to pipe out through a squeeze bottle or a pastry bag. If you want to make the icing thinner for flooding the cookies after you have outlined them, place some of the icing in another bowl and add water or lemon juice until thin (it should be a bit thinner than you think it needs to be - believe me). Let the icing harden on the outline before flooding, and let the flooded icing harden before decorating. The cookies can be kept in an airtight container for up to 3 days.