I’m just going to come out and say it. I don’t really know that much about football. You could say football and I are like acquaintances. I know some of the major players by name (mainly Seahawk players), basic terminology, and the gist of how the game is played. But, that’s about it.
The little that I do know, I picked up from my college roomie, Lauren, who is possibly the biggest Bronco fan I have ever met (ironic, huh?) and from my Dad and brother, who can literally spend hours talking about football and their fantasy football teams. I’m not even kidding when I say hours. In fact, that may even be an understatement.
I even tried to learn about football on my own once. I read a Wikipedia article (good source, right?) and tried to learn everything about the Chicago Bears. Why, you ask? Well, to impress this boy I really liked. Are you wondering how that worked out? Let’s just say anytime the Bears play, I root for the other team.
My entire family
likes loves the Seahawks. We have a 12th man flag hanging outside of our house, everyone (including myself now) has Seahawk attire, and the puppies have Seahawk nametags. Did I mention we visited Seattle for the sole purpose of going to a Seahawk game? Yeah, that happened.
Can you see why I’ve become a Seahawk fan?
While in Seattle I purchased a ‘Hustle like Russell’ shirt. I really liked the slogan for some reason, and I was getting kind of tired of being the only one without Seahawk garb. Once I had the shirt, I started to really get into this football thing. I still don’t know everything there is to know about football (and, honestly, I’ll probably never know everything), but one thing I do know is that tomorrow I’ll be cheering (rather loudly) for the Seahawks.
And, probably eating half of these cookies before halftime.
Speaking of the cookies, I’m actually really happy about how they turned out. This was my first time making homemade sugar cookies and working with royal icing, and I’ll admit I was a little nervous about the royal icing part. All in all though, I would say everything went well. The sugar cookie itself is soft in the middle and harder around the edges, and has that buttery-sugary taste that you’d expect from a sugar cookie. The royal icing was super easy to make (you don’t even need meringue powder!) and is flavored lightly with caramel extract, making it a little sweeter and leaving a hint of caramel taste on your tongue after each bite.
The piping of the royal icing wasn’t that bad either. But, I will say that it was extremely time-consuming. I had planned on putting this post up a lot sooner, but the piping (and my need for perfection) took a lot longer than I had anticipated. That’s something to keep in mind if you’re going to embark on this baking project or one that is similar.
Seahawk Sugar Cookies with Caramel Royal Icing
Yields: about 40 cookies
football cookie cutter
football helmet cookie cutter
navy blue gel food coloring
electric green gel food coloring
piping bags (or, Ziploc) and piping tips
½ cup unsalted butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
1 egg, brought to room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
Caramel Royal Icing
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoons light corn syrup
*I suggest making the cookies and letting them sit overnight before icing them.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment, cream the butter for about a minute on medium speed—get it nice and smooth.
Add the sugar (still on medium speed) until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Mix in the egg and vanilla until combined. Set aside.
In a medium sized bowl, whisk together baking powder, salt, baking soda, all-purpose flour, and cream of tartar.
With the stand mixer on low, gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in three parts, mixing until combined—the dough will be tough and a little sticky.
Gather the dough as best you can into two balls, wrap each in plastic wrap, and let sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
After being chilled, remove the dough from the plastic wrap and place on a piece of large parchment paper. Cover the dough with another piece of large parchment paper, and using a rolling-pin roll the dough to about 1/4-inch thick—I found the thinner the cookie the better the shape stayed.
Once dough is rolled out, slide the parchment paper covered dough onto a cutting board and place back in the fridge for another 30-60 minutes or until dough is easy to work with—you want the dough to become hard, so that it’s easier for you to cut the shapes.
After dough is chilled for a second time, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line baking sheet with parchment paper.
Remove the chilled dough from the fridge and cut out your football shapes, place each shape on the lined baking sheet and put in the freezer for 15 minutes—if the dough gets to soft for cutting your shapes place in the freezer to firm up a bit.
Bake for about 8 minutes or until edges start getting a little brown.
Let cookies cool for about a minute on the cookie sheet, and then transfer to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
Caramel Royal Icing
*In total I made about 2 ½ batches of icing for each color—you can make it all at once (the icing will stay in the fridge overnight) or make it as you need it.
*I also made a white batch, but decided that I liked using the other two colors better.
In a small bowl, combine powdered sugar, light corn syrup, and a few drops of caramel and milk—I added the caramel and milk on a drop-by-drop basis until I had the consistency and flavor I wanted (you’ll want a thicker icing for outlining the cookie shape and writing the words, and a thinner icing for when you flood (color in the background) the cookie)
Continue adding caramel and milk until desired flavoring and consistency are achieved.
Mix in gel food coloring until desired color is achieved.
Spoon colored icing into a piping bag with a small tip (or, Ziploc with a small corner cut) for outlining the cookie shapes—let the outline harden before you start flooding the cookie.
Once outline has hardened, switch to a larger tip (or, larger corner cut) for flooding—let sit until royal icing has completely hardened before starting to write on each cookie.
For the writing, use a small tip (or, small corner cut)—do your best, have fun, and don’t stress (like me) if each letter doesn’t come out perfect!