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Love Letter Cookies

Handwritten letters and notes are the best, right? I love technology, the Internet, and social media like crazy, but I am also a huge believer in hand-writing thank-you notes, letters, etc. There’s just something more personal about receiving a hand-written note — knowing that an envelope, a stamp, and the ritual of mailing it were involved. Snail mail and hand-written notes also allow me to justify my shopping trips to Paper Source!

If you haven’t mailed someone a hand-written note in a while, do it this Valentine’s Day season! I made these little love letter cookies to celebrate the season — and they were so easy to do! A simple shape, only one color of icing, and minimal decorating required. Enjoy!

If you are a new to decorating with royal icing, here are some helpful tips and links:

Here are the specifics on how I made these cookies:

Omi’s Sugar Cookies

1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon nutmeg

Beat butter and sugar. Add egg, sour cream, and nutmeg. Add dry ingredients gradually. Chill the batter overnight or for at least 4 hours. Roll out dough and cut with cookie cutters. Bake at 350F until golden (in true fashion, my grandma didn’t give a specific baking time. I baked the cookies for about 8 minutes). The yield will depend on how large your cookie cutter is. I got a couple dozen cookies out of this recipe.

White Royal Icing
4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 Tablespoons meringue powder
5 Tablespoons water

Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until the sheen has disappeared and the icing has a matte appearance (about 7-10 minutes).  Transfer the contents of the mixing bowl to an air-tight container. This will be the stiffest consistency of the icing, and at this point it is still too stiff to use for decorating. Add water a very small amount at a time and stir by hand until fully incorporated. Continue until the icing has reached a consistency appropriate for piping.

* Note: you may need more than one batch of icing, depending on how many cookies you make or how big your cookies are.