Previous month:
March 2015
Next month:
May 2015

Friday Food: Easter Biscuits with Royal Icing

A biscuitMy go to biscuit is from my plain sweet Kiss Biscuit recipe. This week I watched Martha bake brown sugar cookies, which are basically Kiss Biscuits with half the caster sugar replaced with brown sugar. It makes a very good biscuit, which is still light but has a nice flavour. Then I made a simple Royal Icing and did a little decorating. I am not a very skilled decorator, but I managed to make some quite presentable biscuits.

I didn't use any special equipment, just a whisk for the icing and a few ziplock bags for the piping. I even coloured some raw sugar and used it to decorate the iced biscuits. I found out that you really should ice and then straight away dredge with sugar. If you leave the Royal Icing too long it dries. Which is good for icing, but bad for dredging with sugar!!

If you are too impatient to bake, then use Milk Arrowroot biscuits instead. They are perfect as they are egg shaped and if you use the 'wrong' side, they are flat.

 

Royal Icing     

  • one egg-white
  • about 2 cups of pure icing sugar, sifted
  • a little lemon juice

Coloured Sugar

  • raw or ordinary sugar
  • food colouring, gel is best

 

I baked some Kiss Biscuits, using this recipe. 225g is pretty much 1 cup, so I used 1/2 cup of caster sugar and 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar and went ahead as usual with the baking. I cooled the biscuits on a rack.

Bake some biscuits

Put the egg-white into a very clean glass or metal bowl. Beat with a whisk, or fork, for a few seconds until lots of bubbles appear. Add the lemon juice and then the sifted icing sugar a little at a time. Whisk between additions.

Royal icing 1

The Royal Icing should be about as thick as soft serve ice cream, Mr Whippy to those who remember. This is the icing for piping outlines, or dams, on the biscuits. I spoon some of this into a ziplock bag and cover the rest with clingfilm.

Royal icing 2

I cut a tiny corner off the bag and use it to pipe. I start squeezing and let the line of icing drop onto the biscuit, and it curves nicely down and settles. I don't have the joining the ends part right yet.

Icing biscuits

To fill or flood, the biscuits, I add a little extra water or lemon juice to the rest of the icing. It should be runny enough to spread all by itself. Mine was not, but hey, I carried on regardless. You basically pipe wildly inside the line you piped, and then the icing should just flow to the edges all by itself. I encouraged mine with the end of a skewer!!! It should be nice and flat, but mine are very hill and peaky.

A variety of icing

You can also pipe patterns, stripes, or swirls or dots, or just an outline on the biscuits.

Dredge

You can leave the biscuits to dry, or make some coloured sugar to decorate further. I added some gel colouring, which I bought at the supermarket, a little at a time to some raw sugar in a ziplock bag. I sqidged it all together until the sugar was the colour I liked. The you can press the biscuit into the sugar, or drizzle the sugar over the biscuit. And again, leave it to dry and set.

Easter egg biscuits

Royal Icing is a very simple and easy way to make some plain biscuits look more special. You don't need any fancy ingredients or equipment, and if you are impatient like me, you don't have to wait ages for things to set or dry before you do another process. It's also a very child friendly activity!!!

Easter biscuits


The Australian Patient

Three of four times a year I go to The Hospital and I am a 'patient' for the student doctors. This week it was the final year doctors. After the usual poking and prodding and taking of history, they were set the task of debating my possible treatments. My spleen was once again the star and everyone wanted to feel it. Apparently it feels like a nose???? It is thoroughly exhausting, but I feel useful and it is a worthwhile thing to do. I sensibly rang and cancelled my appointment with the exercise physiologist for Wednesday.

On Sunday at dinner MrsDrWho and I realised that Easter was more than on its way, it was imminent. I went to school on Monday afternoon and showed the children how to sew the felt chicken from BH&G.

Upstanding chicken

The children had to trace and cut and then sew their chickens. Then they glued on the feathers and glued 'in' the feet. Considering they hadn't really sewn before, they turned out very well!!

Chickapalooza

Consequently, when I came home on Tuesday afternoon, we all went to bed and then we slept all night. We arose for hot cross buns with The GardyGardeners, and then back to sleep all day Wednesday and all night too. The Labradors are excellent sleepers. They do take up quite a lot of the bed. It's an ipad photo and they are always atmospheric: grainy and a bit pale.

Labradors sleeping

It was WeeJock and Bessie's dad's birthday and I knitted him a hat and baked some brownies. The Twoman Pup Tent Hat is a marvellous pattern, all cabled with just some twisty knitting into the front and the back of two stitches. I used some 10ply naturally Loyal and it is so light and warm. I'd knit this pattern again.

Twoman pup tent 2015

Today I bought some material, and I am planning on sewing something Eastery. This year I haven't done very much Eastery at all. I have posted some cards and that is all. Tomorrow all the shops are shut and so I plan to bake some Easter biscuits for Friday Food and sew. Me-Made-May starts soon, well in May. I was an enthusiastic participant in Self-Stitched-September because I could wear lots of dresses and skirts I had sewn and cardigans I'd knitted, but May is not a good month in the Southern Hemisphere. It is all just the same few cardigans worn with a variety of long sleeved bought tops and green jeans. I wonder if I might just do my own Self-Stitched-Septemeber this year???

Sewing

The weather has been both unseasonally warm and so wild and windy that we had gale warnings. We walked in the rain and wind this morning. DayLight Saving ends early Sunday morning so the evenings will be dark very early. I have been doing some reading as lots of books have arrived from The Library. It is a sad time at Easter, as The Library is closed for five days. Thank goodness I stocked up today.

Peri and Gilly, eventually, both looked the same way and I managed to fit them both into the same photo!! I was holding a very tasty treat. The Labradors can't have chocolate, but I think they may get a pig's ear for Easter.

A a a