Mother’s Day – one of my favorite holidays, simply because I absolutely love my momma. My momma deserves more than a holiday to recognize how special she is. Luckily we all treat her like the queen that she is on the regular. But when Mother’s Day comes around, it’s a great excuse for us to give her a little extra lovin’. A little extra love never hurt nobody!
To be honest, I’ve always baked my momma something for Mother’s Day. I know flowers are beautiful, but I’ve found that mommas are happiest when they receive a gift that you put a lot of effort in creating. Anything that comes from the heart is outstanding. Last year, I made momma Oreo truffle roses, and this year, I’m making her shortbread cookies decorated with royal icing.
Shortbread cookies are my momma’s favorite cookies (those and white chocolate macadamia nut cookies) because they melt in your mouth and just scream “delectably tender and buttery.” To me, they’re perfect just like that. But when you add the royal icing on it, oh my gosh, the light and fluffy icing allows you to decorate any cookie any way you’d like, which makes it that much more fun, right?! Creativity at its finest my friends!
This shortbread cookie recipe is unbelievable. The addition of one egg yolk is really key. Many shortbread recipes require butter, sugar, flower, and vanilla extract,but the use of both sugars (brown and white) and the egg yolk really make a difference.
The royal icing recipe is straight from Wilton, using only meringue powder, water, and powdered sugar. Royal icing is great to work with because you can add water to make it thin, and add powdered sugar to thicken the icing if needed. With this royal icing recipe, I added a few drops of edible food coloring to get pink and purple icing colors. Next step, the decorations. The decoration possibilities are endless. Let your creative mind free!!
*UPDATE* I let momma try the shortbread cookie once it was fully decorated. In the middle of her chewing, her eyes widened, she stared at me, and said with a full mouth, “oh hell yes.” I think she was pretty satisfied with her treats!
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1.5 tbsp meringue powder
- 2 cups powdered sugar (confectioner’s sugar)
- 2-3 tbsp warm water
- Using an electric mixture, beat softened butter until creamy.
- Add the two sugars and beat until the mixture has a fluffy consistency.
- Add the egg yolk and vanilla extract. Beat until ingredients are well-combined.
- Slowly add flour. In the middle of adding the flour, add the salt and mix thoroughly.
- Stop beating until fully mixed. Do not overmix the dough!
- Transfer the dough onto a sheet of parchment paper. Add another sheet on top of the dough and roll it out to reach about 1/2 inch thick. Place in fridge for at least an hour.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Remove dough from fridge. Use desired cookie cutter to cut out various shapes of shortbread dough.
- Bake on a parchment lined baking sheet for about 15 minutes. Keep an eye on the cookies as each oven is different and some cookies may need a few more minutes in the oven.
- Set aside to let cool.
- Using a clean electric mixture, combine powdered sugar, meringue powder, and water until the icing is fully mixed through and well-combined. Add two to three drops of food coloring (a little goes a long way with food coloring).
- Pipe icing contents into piping bag with a tip of your choosing.
- Pipe a thin line close to the edge of the cookie. Begin flooding the cookie and use a toothpick to blend the royal icing together inside the cookie. Decorate as you desire!
- Store cookies in an airtight container for up to one month.
- Bon appétit!