Monday, February 13, 2012

Dotty With Love Heart Cookies for Valentine's Day

In which I learn to decorate a sugar cookie with flood icing and flat dots and subsequently spray the entire kitchen and myself with hot pink icing like a sugary cluster bomb.

Dotty hearts are dotty

It's almost Valentine's Day, and you can feel LOVE in the air; hot and pulpy like a, er, like something hot and pulpy. Everywhere I turn, I'm bombarded with messages of love and hearts, love and romance — written in all caps in sparkly red curly fonts. Even the birds are getting the Valentine's message; they friskily chase each other, sometimes performing their sexy time right in front of my kitchen window. NATURE! Stuff's getting real here, folks.

When I think about the love of my life, I get all dotty in the head with love and besotted with giggly, blushing thoughts of romance. We celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary last summer! What better pastry to symbolize my marriage than a dotty pink heart-shaped cookie?

Mmmm... shiny pink cookies!

I had no idea what I was doing, so I followed this tutorial for making the Royal icing; this tutorial  for flooding the icing on the cookies; and this tutorial for making the dots. I highly recommend them as Bridget from Bake at 350 is a cookie genius, and her video tutorials are easy to follow. Bridget is also involved with University of Cookie, another really great cookie tutorial site. I have included the Sugar Cookie recipe below.


I am hilariously inept at these cookies! I did not screw on the lid of my squeeze bottle properly, and as you can see by the photo below, comedy ensued.

Thankfully, this did not require a HazMat cleanup team.
The lid literally exploded off the container as I squeezed. Later I would discover that the blowback from the lid explosion caused gobs of hot pink icing shrapnel to embed themselves permanently in my hair and eyebrows. I cried a little, then actually had a huge laugh about it. Dude, it's just a cookie!

I apologize that the photos aren't the usual standard of quality. The cookies looked too weird to pull out all the camera and lighting gear. Anyhoo – I hope you have as much fun as I did making these Dotty With Love Heart cookies!

Sugar Cookies 
Recipe from Four Little Boys
Makes about 4 dozen cookies, depending on the size of your cutter

1 Cup Shortening (I used butter flavoured shortening)
1 1/2 Cups Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
2 Eggs
1/4 Teaspoon Almond Extract
1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
3 Tablespoons Milk
3 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1/2 Teaspoon Orange Extract (optional)


  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together shortening and sugar until light & fluffy.
  2. Mix together milk and baking soda until thoroughly combined. Add to shortening mixture and beat until combined.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, beating each time until combined.
  4. Add milk mixture, vanilla and citrus extracts (if using), and salt; beat until combined.
  5. Add flour, one cup at a time, beating after each addition, until thoroughly combined.
  6. Refrigerate cookie dough for about an hour.
  7. Pre-heat oven to 350° F.
  8. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  9. Roll dough out on a flour-dusted board or counter to about 1/8" - 1/4" thickness. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters.
  10. Place each cookie on the prepared cookie sheet so that there is about 2" in between each cookie, as they spread a little bit.
  11. Bake for about 8 minutes, until edges just start looking golden.
  12. Remove sheet from oven and leave cookies on the sheet to cool for about 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.

Allow cookies to cool completely before icing.

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